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Former NFL quarterback Ryan Mallett drowns at Florida beach

Mallett was a head football coach at a high school in Arkansas after professional career

Graeme Massie
Los Angeles
Wednesday 28 June 2023 01:23 BST
Ryan Mallett
Ryan Mallett (Getty Images)

Former NFL quarterback Ryan Mallett died in a drowning accident at a Florida beach at the age of 35.

The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office says a group of people had been struggling to make their way back to shore in Destin when Mallet went under and he was not breathing when lifeguards pulled him out.

Lifesaving measures were immediately given but Mallett was pronounced dead at the Destin Emergency Room.

“The victim is identified as 35-year old Ryan Mallett of Arkansas. We send our heartfelt sympathies to his family, friends, and loved ones in his tragic passing,” the agency stated.

Mallett, who played for the New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens, was working as a head football coach at White Hall High School in Arkansas, and officials at the school district confirmed his death on its social media accounts.

“It is with great sadness that we share the loss of Coach Ryan Mallett. Coach Mallett was a beloved coach and educator. We ask that you remember his family, team, students, fellow coaches, and the White Hall School District staff in your prayers,” they stated.

Hunter Yurachek, the director of athletics at the University of Arkansas where Mallett played in college, also took to Twitter to confirm the news.

“Our (Razorback) family lost an incredibly special person today. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends and teammates of Ryan Mallett,” he tweeted on Tuesday evening.

Mallett was a third-round pick in the 2011 NFL draft and retired in 2017 after also playing for the Houston Texans.

The 6ft 7in athlete was from Texarkana, Texas, and was ranked the number four overall player in the country when he graduated high school.

The New England Patriots official Twitter account also confirmed the death of Mallett.

“The New England Patriots are deeply saddened to learn of the sudden and unexpected passing of former quarterback Ryan Mallett. Our thoughts are with the Mallett family, his former teammates and all who are mourning his loss,” the team said in a statement.

And the NFL’s official Twitter account added: “The NFL family is deeply saddened by the passing of Ryan Mallett. Our thoughts are with his family and loved ones.”

Some of Mallet’s teammates and other NFL stars reacted on social media to his death.

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