Offensive lineman Mario Henderson, who played four seasons for the then-Oakland Raiders, died Wednesday at the age of 35.
No cause of death was announced.
"The Raiders Family is heavy hearted following the passing of Mario Henderson," the team said in a statement. "... Everyone will miss Mario's sense of humor and passion for football and life. The prayers of the entire Raider Nation are with Mario's family and loved ones at this time."
Henderson was selected by the Raiders in the third round of the 2007 NFL draft after a college career at Florida State. He started five games at left tackle in his second season and played in 44 games (28 starts) in four seasons with the Raiders.
Henderson also spent time with the San Diego Chargers but never played in another NFL game after the leaving the Raiders. He subsequently signed for several indoor football teams.
The athletic department at Lehigh Senior High School in Lehigh Acres, Fla., where Henderson was a star athlete, issued a statement that read, in part, "We are saddened and shocked to hear of the unexpected passing of one of our most prominent alumni. We would like to send our deepest condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of our 2003 graduate Mario Henderson. ... Known as a gentle giant, Mario will be sorely missed by all whose lives he impacted."
The NFL Players Association said in a statement, "We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Mario Henderson. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends during this difficult time. Rest In Peace."
--Field Level Media