Legendary NFL player Jack Tatum, and All-Pro safety for the Oakland Raiders who was nicknamed “The Assassin,” has died of a heart attack, Sports Illustrated reports.
Tatum, best known for a hit in a 1978 preseason game that paralyzed New England Patriots receiver Darryl Stingley, died Tuesday in Oakland, according to his former Ohio State teammate John Hicks. Tatum was 61.
On Aug. 12, 1978, Stingley ran head-on into Tatum on a crossing pattern. The blow severed Stingley’s fourth and fifth veterbrae and left him paralyzed. Stingley died in 2007.
Tatum played safety for the Raiders from 1971 to 1980, winning one Super Bowl with the team and being voted to three Pro Bowls. He was considered one of the hardest hitters ever to play in the NFL.