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Jeff Blackshear (1969–2019), former NFL offensive lineman

Getty Images / George Rose

Remembered as a gentle giant, he played for the Ravens and Seahawks

Jeff Blackshear was an offensive lineman who played with the Baltimore Ravens, Seattle Seahawks, Kansas City Chiefs, and Green Bay Packers. The guard started every game for the Ravens from 1997 until 1999. He was drafted by the Seahawks out of Northeast Louisiana University in the eighth round.

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Died: Saturday, August 31, 2019 (Who else died on August 31?)

Details of death: Died at the age of 50 from pancreatic cancer.

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On his cancer diagnosis: “It’s very hard. There’s not a day that doesn’t go by that you don’t think about death. I’m not afraid of dying, but it’s just my kids and my family. I have a lot of people that still depend on me and need me.” —As told to

What they said about him: “He was a gentle giant off the field as well as a fierce competitor and tremendous teammate who played the game with passion.” —Baltimore Ravens

He literally blocked out the sun. “I told him I’d offer him if he’d just get off the bus first and he agreed. It’s a good thing I did because when he locked into you, there wasn’t much anyone could do about it.” —His college head coach Dave Roberts

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