On Thursday, the Detroit Lions announced that former linebacker Jessie Lemonier died. He was 25.
“We are shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of former Detroit Lion Jessie Lemonier,” the Lions said in a statement.
“Jessie was a model teammate and wonderful young man who is gone far too soon. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends during this difficult time.”
— Detroit Lions (@Lions) January 26, 2023
Lemonier, who was drafted by the XFL’s Arlington Renegades in November, instead recently signed with the USFL’s Houston Gamblers for the upcoming season before being traded to the Birmingham Stallions.
He appeared in seven games with the Lions during the 2021 season, finishing with 15 total tackles and 1.5 sacks. He signed with the Arizona Cardinals last summer and registered a sack in a preseason game but was later released during training camp.
His agent, Drew Smith of DEC Management, told ESPN that Lemonier and his girlfriend were expecting a child.
Lemonier, a native of Hialeah, Florida, originally signed with the Los Angeles Chargers as an undrafted free agent out of Liberty in 2020. He saw action in six games, making two tackles.
Some reactions on Twitter:
Saddening to see people trying to turn this into a political narrative. RIP💓
— 🚀45-37 still on the menu🚀 (@stayhotandrew) January 26, 2023
Every other day its another athlete… Why don't we have the cause?
— Verlis (@Verliswolf) January 26, 2023
RIP. 🙏💙 I was at the game last year when he sacked Rodgers. Sending prayers. https://t.co/jkpcJLWPgy
— Onepride Nation (@onepridenation) January 26, 2023
I’m so tired of reading about all these young athletes dying. What’s going on? So sad 😞
— Jodi White (@jodilynn1974) January 26, 2023