Jaylon Ferguson, who set an FBS record for career sacks while at Louisiana Tech and then played the last three seasons in the NFL with the Baltimore Ravens, has died. He was 26 years old.
Police said Wednesday that the cause of death has not yet been determined.
“On June 21, 2022, at approximately 11:25 p.m., Northern District Patrol Officers responded to a home in the 400 block of Ilchester Avenue for a report of a questionable death,” Baltimore police said. “Once there, officers located Jaylon Ferguson, 26, who was unresponsive and being treated by doctors. Ferguson never regained consciousness, and doctors pronounced him dead at the scene. No signs of trauma were found and no foul play was suspected at this time.”
Ferguson, nicknamed “Sack Daddy,” was drafted by the Ravens in the third round in 2019 and played his entire professional career with them. He appeared in 38 games and had 4 1/2 sacks.
“Jaylon was a warm-hearted, gentle person who loved his family and his team. He was a joy to talk to and be around every day,” Baltimore coach John Harbaugh said. “You always wanted to see and talk to ‘Ferg.’ Our prayers and help go out to his family.”
Born on December 14, 1995, in St. Francisville, Louisiana, Ferguson played high school football and basketball at West Feliciana. At Louisiana Tech, his 45th sack was One better than another Ravens linebacker, Terrell Suggs, accomplished at Arizona State.
Ferguson was a third-team AP All-American in 2018.
“The LA Tech family mourns the tragic news this morning of the sudden death of former Bulldog great, Jaylon Ferguson,” the Louisiana Tech football program tweeted. “We will remember his God-given talents on the field and his infectious personality off the field. the. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and his friends.”
Ferguson made nine starts as a rookie for the Ravens in 2019, also starting the team’s only playoff game that season. The linebacker spent time on the COVID-19 list early last season but ended up appearing in 10 games.
“Ferg and I went through some of the same struggles when it came to making a name for ourselves in the league,” linebacker Tyus Bowser said. “From that, we were able to understand each other and help each other build and grow. like players. From the playbook, to the field, and even outside of work, we create a strong bond with each other. Whether he was having a bad day or vice versa, we encouraged each other, and that is what I appreciated the most and what I will miss.
The Ravens finished minicamp last week and are out until training camp. Wednesday was a tragic day for the franchise, with the news that both Ferguson and former defensive tackle Tony Siragusa had died.
“‘J Ferg’ had the most genuine energy I’ve ever seen,” safety Tony Jefferson said. “Before I left after minicamp in the locker room, he expressed that he was ready to have a great year, and I believed it. It was going to be his best season as a Raven, he will be watching us, I know, and he will bring the team closer only from the brand what he left.”
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Noah Trister, Associated Press