Kevin Greene will be remembered for his long blond hair, his charisma, and the havoc he created for opposing quarterbacks.
The Hall of Fame linebacker, considered one of the fiercest pass rushers in NFL history, died Monday, it was confirmed by the family and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He was 58.
No cause of death was given.
“I regarded him as a personal friend and a true Hall of Famer in every sense," Hall of Fame president and CEO David Baker said in a statement Monday. “He possessed the most incredible can-do attitude of anyone I ever met. He was a great player, but more than that, he was a great man."
A two-time All-Pro and five-time Pro Bowl selection, Greene finished his 15-year NFL career with 160 sacks, which ranks third in league history behind only Bruce Smith (200) and Reggie White (198). He also had 23 forced fumbles and five interceptions.
He played for Los Angeles Rams (1985–1992), Pittsburgh Steelers (1993–1995), Carolina Panthers (1996, 1998-99) and San Francisco 49ers (1997). He was All-Pro in 1994 and 1996.
Former Panthers general manager Bill Polian said Greene was a person exceptionally devoted to his family, his craft as a football player and the military, where he earned the rank of captain and completed airborne training at Fort Benning to become a paratrooper.
Polian said Greene had an exceptional ability to escape blockers.