The NFL, and the world lost a great man on April 9, when former New Orleans Saints player Will Smith was brutally murdered. We’ve heard about his tragic death, but we wanted to know more about his remarkable life. Click through for five important facts about Will!
Will Smith was murdered at the too-young age of 34 on April 9, fatally shot during what’s being described as a road rage incident in New Orleans. He’s gone, but will never be forgotten. Click through to learn five things about the life of the late, great NFL star.
He played nine seasons with the New Orleans Saints
Will was picked 18th overall in the first round of the NFL draft in 2004, and went on to play for the New Orleans Saints until 2012. With the Saints, he played incredibly as a defensive end, but a knew injury in 2013 left him sidelined for the entire season. He was picked up by the New England Patriots in 2014, but let go of the team later that same year.
Will was the 3rd highest paid defensive end…ever!
In 2008, the New Orleans Saints agreed to take on Will for a six-year, $70 million contract, with $26 million guaranteed. This made him one of the highest paid defensive ends in NFL history.
He was highly dedicated to charity work
Will started the ““Where There’s a Will There’s a Way” foundation, which mentors and provides at-risk kids with educational and athletic opportunities. He hosted the “Smith Family Christmas” event during the holidays, in which 60 at-need families received gifts, a holiday meal, and a tour of the Saints practice facility. He was also on the board of the Artists and Athletes Alliance.
He’s a Super Bowl winner
Will played starting defensive end in the 2009 Super Bowl for the New Orleans Saints. This was the year they had their historic victory, thanks in part to Will.
He was going to be inducted into the Saints Hall of Fame
The announcement wasn’t supposed to come out until May 17, 2016, but the New Orleans Saints revealed that Will had unanimously been selected to join the team’s Hall of Fame in 2016. The induction ceremony is still happening, but no word as to when.
HollywoodLifers, our thoughts are with the Smith family during this difficult time.