Former TCU star and NFL first-round pick Jeff Gladney has died.
Gladney, 25, was killed overnight in a car crash in Dallas, Texas, his agent confirmed to media on Monday.
The Vikings selected the cornerback in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft, and he started 15 games as a rookie. The team released Gladney in August 2021 after he was charged with a domestic violence felony stemming from an April incident in Dallas.
He was found not guilty in March 2022, and the Cardinals signed a deal with the cornerback a week later.
TCU paid tribute to Gladney in a statement from athletic director Jeremiah Donati via the Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
“Our TCU Athletics family, and our football program in particular, were very devastated to learn of Jeff Gladney’s death. After graduating and continuing his playing career in the NFL, Jeff remained closely associated with TCU. He loved everything about his alma mater. He was a frequent visitor to campus and attended our Spring Practice and Spring Games this year, proudly accompanied by his young son.
“He will be missed by our entire community. Our thoughts, prayers and deepest condolences go out to Jeff’s family, friends and TCU teammates.”
Former teammates and people from around the NFL world also mourned the sudden death of the former TCU star:
I’ve lost my brother, my best friend, my right hand man… that’s all I can fucking take!
RIP Jeff Gladney Brother please take care of me.
— Reag (@jalenreagor) May 30, 2022
We are saddened by the tragic death of former Viking, Jeff Gladney. Our hearts go out to his family and friends, the Arizona Cardinals organization, and Jeff’s current and former teammates and coaches who are grieving his life lost far too soon. pic.twitter.com/5bdVCXT6Gv
— Minnesota Vikings (@Vikings) May 30, 2022
Rest In Peace Jeff Gladney🙏🏾
— JJETS✈️ (@JJettas2) May 30, 2022
— Arizona Cardinals (@AZCardinals) May 30, 2022
Rest In Peace Jeff Gladney. The 25-year-old Arizona Cardinals cornerback has died. So much life lies ahead of him. Sending prayers for him, his family and friends after this tragic loss.
— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) May 30, 2022
The NFL family mourns the loss of Jeff Gladney and we send our deepest condolences to his family and loved ones. pic.twitter.com/FgN5T62q3I
— NFL (@NFL) May 30, 2022
prayers for @TCUFootball and Jeff Gladney’s family. Gone way too soon. 🙏
— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) May 30, 2022
This message from Jeff Gladney hits me differently. Had the privilege of playing with him during his rookie year in Minnesota. One of the most respectful and single-minded rookies I’ve encountered to date. Always had a smile and came to work. Sad sad. So young, so precious. RIP Young King
— George Iloka (@George_iloka) May 30, 2022