Tony Siragusa, the charismatic defensive tackle who was part of one of the most celebrated defenses in NFL history with the Baltimore Ravens, died Wednesday. He was 55.
Siragusa’s broadcast agent, Jim Ornstein, confirmed the death. The cause of death was not immediately available.
“This is a really sad day,” he said. “Tony was way more than my client, he was family. My heart goes out to Tony’s loved ones.”
Siragusa, known as “Goose,” played seven seasons with the Indianapolis Colts and five with the Ravens. Baltimore’s 2000 team won the Super Bowl behind a stout defense that included Siragusa, Ray Lewis and Sam Adams.
Siragusa was popular with fans because of his fun-loving attitude, which also helped him transition quickly to broadcasting after his playing career.
“There was no one like Goose — a warrior on the field and a team unifier with a giving, generous heart who helped teammates and the community more than most people know,” said Brian Billick, the coach of that 2000 team. “We would not have won the Super Bowl without him. This is such stunning, sad news.”
Siragusa came to Baltimore as a free agent in 1997 and teamed up with Adams to form an imposing defensive tackle tandem. He finished his career with 22 sacks.
“I love Goose like a brother. From the first day we met, I knew that life was different. I knew he was someone who would change my life forever,” Lewis said. “He was a one-of-a-kind person who made you feel important and special. You can never replace a man like that.”
The news of Siragusa's death came on what was already a tragic day for the Ravens. The death of Jaylon Ferguson, a linebacker for Baltimore, at age 26 was announced earlier in the day.
“This is a tremendously sad day for the Baltimore Ravens,” owner Steve Bisciotti said. “We appreciate everyone who has expressed an outpouring of support for our players, coaches and staff.”
Siragusa was a star football player and wrestler at David Brearley High School in New Jersey. He then played collegiately at Pittsburgh, where he had a reputation for wisecracks well before his NFL career.
“If I wanted to learn a school song, I would’ve gone to Notre Dame or Penn State," he once said. "I want to kill people on the football field. That’s why I came to Pitt.”
Siragusa went undrafted before signing with Indianapolis, but he turned out to be a championship-winning force in the NFL. Then he took his personality to the airwaves, working for Fox's NFL coverage.
“His incomparable passion for football established him as one of the most charismatic personalities ever to set foot on the gridiron or in front of a camera,” Fox Sports said in a statement. “Goose was a natural in his ability to relate the sport and its players to fans everywhere.”
Siragusa also had a role on HBO's “The Sopranos” and hosted shows on the Discovery Channel and DIY Network.
“Tony truly was bigger than life, on and off the field,” said Pat Narduzzi, Pitt's current football coach. “He played the game passionately and relentlessly. Despite not being drafted, he thrived in the NFL for 12 years. His post-football life took him so many places but he never forgot Pitt. We could always count on him to send the best recorded pep talks to our guys before our biggest games."
Baltimore Ravens linebacker Jaylon Ferguson has died at age 26. Police said the cause of death is still to be determined but that no foul play is suspected at this time. Ferguson played three NFL seasons. All were with Baltimore. Ferguson set the college Football Bowl Subdivision career sacks record with 45 when he played at Louisiana Tech, and he was drafted by the Ravens in the third round in 2019. He played in 38 games as a pro and had 4 1/2 sacks. Ferguson was born Dec. 14, 1995, in St. Francisville, Louisiana. He played high school football and basketball at West Feliciana.
The Washington Post has obtained a letter detailing a woman's accusations that Washington Commanders owner Dan Snyder sexually harassed and assaulted her on a team plane in 2009. The woman was later paid $1.6 million by the team to settle her claims. An attorney working for the team argued in the letter that the woman's claims were not credible, and Snyder denied the allegations. The NFL is investigating a different woman's allegation that Snyder sexually harassed her when she worked for the team. A House committee is also looking into the team's workplace culture. Snyder has declined to testify before the committee.
A person with knowledge of the decision tells The Associated Press the NFL has fined the Washington Commanders $100,000 and stripped the team of two offseason workouts next year because of excessive contact in practice among players. The fine applies to coach Ron Rivera. One particular hit in organized team activities incensed Rivera to the point he stopped practice to lecture his team. The fine is the latest off-field development for the Commanders after assistant Jack Del Rio was fined for downplaying the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol and a lawyer for Dan Snyder told Congress the team's owner would not testify at a hearing next week.
Ryan Fitzpatrick is taking his magic touch to the broadcast booth. Amazon Prime Video says Fitzpatrick is joining the streaming service as an analyst for its first season as the exclusive home of “Thursday Night Football.” Fitzpatrick will be part of Amazon's pregame, halftime and postgame coverage. The 39-year-old journeyman quarterback recently retired after a 17-year career in which he started for a record nine teams, earning the nickname “FitzMagic.” Fitzpatrick joins Hall of Fame tight end Tony Gonzalez and All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman as studio analysts. Al Michaels will be the play-by-play announcer with Kirk Herbstreit as his booth partner.
The Tennessee Titans have added a handful of new coaches and scouts for training camp. The Titans announced Tuesday that five coaches will work with them during camp as part of the NFL’s Bill Walsh Diversity Coaching Fellowship. Former Tennessee running back Bishop Sankey will be a scout as a Nunn-Wooten Scouting Fellow. Former Auburn volleyball player Chesney McClellan will be an intern through the Amy Adams Strunk Women in Football program. This is the third year for the Women in Football program named for the Titans' controlling owner.
The Pittsburgh Steelers have signed veteran defensive end Larry Ogunjobi to a one-year deal. The signing shores up a position of need following Stephon Tuitt’s retirement earlier this month. The 28-year-old Ogunjobi spent last season with the Cincinnati Bengals. A tentative three-year agreement to play for the Chicago Bears was nullified when Ogunjobi failed a physical. He was recovering from foot surgery at the time of the signing. Ogunjobi played well last season for the Bengals, recording a career-high seven sacks. His arrival gives the Steelers another veteran to help shore up a run defense that finished dead last in the league in 2022.
With investigators looking into the death of Ravens outside linebacker Jaylon Ferguson, his family on Thursday asked for privacy, calling this “one of the darkest moments in our lives.”
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FILE - Tony Siragusa, defensive tackle for the Super Bowl-champion Baltimore Ravens, holds the Vince Lombardi trophy as he rides with his wife, Kathy, in a parade in his hometown of Kenilworth, N.J. on March 4, 2001. Siragusa, the charismatic defensive tackle who helped lead a stout Baltimore defense to a Super Bowl title, has died at age 55. Siragusa's broadcast agent, Jim Ornstein, confirmed the death Wednesday, June 22, 2022. (AP Photo/Jeff Zelevansky, File)