On Saturday April 9, shortly after news broke that Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Dwayne Haskins had been killed in an accident, former Dallas Cowboys executive/Pro Football Hall of Famer Gil Brandt appeared on SiriusXM NFL Radio and made a series of comments about Haskins that caused the NFL world to react with outrage.
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Gil Brandt: Dwayne Haskins Was ‘Living to Be Dead’
“I hate anytime anybody is killed or anybody dies, but he was a guy who was living to be dead, so to speak,” began Brandt, who went on to harp about Haskins leaving Ohio State early to enter the NFL Draft in 2019.
“They told him, don’t under any circumstances leave school early. You just don’t have the work habits, you don’t have this, you don’t have that. What did he do? He left school early,” offered Brandt, who went on to say it was “always something” with Haskins, who was drafted No. 15 overall by the Washington Commanders in 2019.
Brandt went on to speculate wildly about how the accident might have occurred early Saturday morning on I-595 in South Florida, this according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
“Maybe if he just stayed in school a year he wouldn’t do silly things (like) jogging on a highway you know on a road like that, that leaves it open because I tell you a guy has two drinks and is just a little bit to the right side of the road and gets hit and killed, that’s easy to happen,” said Brandt.
As noted by Frank Guzman of WSVN-TV in Miami/Fort Lauderdale, the Florida Highway Patrol has since revealed that Haskins was struck and killed by a dump truck while attempting to cross Interstate 595 “when there was oncoming traffic.”
Steelers’ Cam Heyward: ‘Your Words Are Disgraceful’
In the wake of Brandt’s above-referenced comments, Steelers defensive captain Cam Heyward urged the Pro Football Hall of Famer to keep quiet about Haskins.
“I do not know or will assume to but please don’t speak on my friend. He will be missed and your words are disgraceful. We are all hurting right now,” related Heyward.
Also reacting to Brandt’s comments was ESPN commentator Louis Riddick, who recently interviewed for the Steelers’ soon-to-be-open general manager position.
Brandt: ‘I Reacted Carelessly and Insensitively’
In the wake of the uproar, Brandt, who is 90, took to Twitter to apologize for his comments, writing:
“This morning while learning of Dwayne Haskins’ passing, I reacted carelessly and insensitively on a radio interview. I want to apologize to Mr. Haskins’ family and anyone who heard my poor choice of words. I truly apologize. My heart goes out to his family at this difficult time.
Brandt was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2019. The former vice president of player personnel for the Cowboys worked for the organization between 1960-89. He currently works as an analyst for NFL.com and as a host for SiriusXM NFL Radio.
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