AceShowbiz - Gil Brandt has been forced to issue an apology for his insensitive comment on the death of NFL star Dwayne Haskins. The former Dallas Cowboys executive has been called out after saying that the Pittsburg Steelers star "was living to be dead."
After catching heat for his remarks, Gil issued a statement via his official Twitter page. "This morning while learning of Dwayne Haskins' passing, I reacted carelessly and insensitively on a radio interview," he wrote on late Saturday, April 9. "I want to apologize to Mr. Haskins' family and anyone who heard my poor choice of words. I truly apologize. My heart goes out to his family at this difficult time."
Earlier that day, Gil gave his take on Dwayne's passing on SiriusXM. The Pro Football Hall of Famer suggested that the young quarterback ignored the advice of NFL draft evaluators who told him to remain an extra year at Ohio State.
"I hate any time anybody is killed or anybody dies. But he was a guy that was living to be dead, so to speak," the SiriusXM NFL radio analyst said. "They told him don't under any circumstances leave school early. You just don't have the work habits, you don't have this, you don't have that. What did he do? Left school early …"
Gil added, "It was one of those, 'I'm not offsides, but they keep calling me for offsides.' It's a tragic thing. Anytime somebody dies it's tragic, especially when you're 24 years old and you've got your whole life ahead of you." He went on questioning why Dwayne was jogging on the highway as saying, "Maybe if he'd have stayed in school an [extra] year, he wouldn't do silly things [like] jogging on a highway."
Among those criticizing Gil for his insensitive comments was Cam Heyward, a defensive tackle for the Steelers. "I do not know or will assume to but please don't speak on my friend," he wrote in a tweet. "He will be missed and your words are disgraceful. We are all hurting right now."
"I really hope you didn't mean what you said about Dwayne," ESPN's Louis Riddick tweeted at Gil. Yahoo Sports NFL writer Charles Robinson asked that the audio of Gil's comments not be shared, insisting, "It is just completely inappropriate and wildly hurtful."
Dwayne died after getting hit by a dump truck on Saturday morning. Florida Highway Patrol said in a statement, "Mr. Haskins was walking on a limited access facility (Highway/expressway) for unknown reasons. He was attempting to cross the westbound lanes of Interstate 595 when there was oncoming traffic. Unfortunately, he collided with an oncoming dump truck. Mr. Haskins was pronounced dead on scene." Police say they are conducting a "Traffic Homicide Investigation" in the wake of the accident.
Meanwhile, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said in a statement following Dwayne's passing, "I am devastated and at a loss for words with the unfortunate passing of Dwayne Haskins. He quickly became part of our Steelers family upon his arrival in Pittsburgh and was one of our hardest workers, both on the field and in our community."
"Dwayne was a great teammate, but even more so a tremendous friend to so many. I am truly heartbroken," he continued. "Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Kalabrya, and his entire family during this difficult time."
The NFL also mourned the death, saying in its own statement, "The NFL family mourns the tragic loss of Dwayne Haskins and we extend our deepest condolences to his family and loved ones."