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Seahawks legend Cortez Kennedy dead at 48

Police in Orlando, Fla., say there is nothing suspicious, but they are investigating the death.

<p>Hall of fame Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy (96) watches a video presentation during a halftime number-retiring ceremony against the New England Patriots at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports</p>

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Legendary Seattle Seahawks defensive end and NFL Hall of Famer Cortez Kennedy died Tuesday in Orlando, Fla. He was 48.

Orlando Police said it was investigating what led to his death, but said there was nothing suspicious to report.

Kennedy was expected to be in Seattle Thursday night for Rise With Us, a party to benefit the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games.

Kennedy played his entire 11-year pro career in Seattle and was one of the most dominant defensive forces in football. He often drew double teams from opposing offensive lines, thereby opening up opportunities for his teammates to make the play.

Kennedy pulled off a rare feat in 1992. In a season in which Seattle went 2-14, Kennedy was named the NFL's Defensive Player of The Year. He recorded a career-high 14 sacks and 92 tackles that season.

He finished his career with 58 sacks. six fumble recoveries, three interceptions and one touchdown.

Kennedy was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2012, becoming the second full-time Seahawks player to do so following Steve Largent. His No. 96 jersey was retired by the Seahawks later that season.

The Seahawks posted this statement:

Cortez Kennedy has been a pillar of the Seahawks franchise since joining the team in 1990. Tez was the heart and soul of the Seahawks through the 1990s and endeared himself to 12s all across the Pacific Northwest as a player who played with a selfless and relentless approach to the game.

Tez was an NFL Defensive Player of the Year, Pro Football Hall of Famer and Seahawks ambassador, but more than his on-field accomplishments, he was a loyal son, father, teammate, and friend to many, possessing a larger-than-life personality and an infectious laugh.

We extend our warmest thoughts and prayers to his parents, Ruby and Joe Harris, daughter Courtney, and entire family on the unfortunate loss of a life-long Seahawk. We are proud to have been represented by such a special person.

One of Kennedy's greatest single-game performances came on Sept. 20, 1992. He posted three sacks in a 10-6 win over the New England Patriots.

That win turned out to ultimately be a loss for Seattle. Both teams finished 2-14. The Patriots ended up with the No. 1 pick in the following draft because of the tiebreaker and selected Washington State quarterback Drew Bledsoe, who went on to a long and successful career that included two Super Bowl appearances. The Seahawks took Notre Dame quarterback Rick Mirer with the second overall pick. Mirer regressed after a solid rookie year and lasted only four seasons in Seattle.

Paul Silvi and Chris Egan remembered Cortez Kennedy during a conversation on Facebook Live. Share your memories in the comments section.

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