Former NFL head coach Marty Schottenheimer died on Monday after dealing with Alzheimer’s for several years. He was 77 years old.
Schottenheimer was diagnosed in 2014 with Alzheimer’s disease. On January 30, they moved to a hospital in Charlotte, North Carolina near his home due to complications of irreversible, progressive brain disorders.
Schottenheimer has been head coach in the NFL for 21 seasons, leading the Cleveland Browns, Kansas City Chiefs, Washington and Chargers.
He had a career record of 205-139-1, including the playoffs, leading his teams 13 times in the post-season. Although Schottenheimer has trained in three AFC tournaments, two with the Browns and one with the Chiefs, he has never made a Super Bowl.
His NFL coaching career ended in 2006 after pursuing a 14-2 season at Chargers and exiting the division round of the division.
Hall of Fame footballer LaDainian Tomlinson played five seasons under Schottenheimer at Chargers and called him “the best coach.”
“I never participated with Marty as a coach, I felt like I wasn’t fully prepared for the win,” Tomlinson said. “He really wanted to understand every detail of the game plan. I considered him a real all-American man. He was a great father figure and I was lucky to be able to get to know him and my wife and I. [his wife] Pat is beyond the usual player-coach relationship. He was a well-rounded man. He cared more about the man than the athlete. I rather remember the life lessons he taught me. “
Schottenheimer has also played six seasons as a linebacker for the Buffalo Bills (1965–1968) and the Patriots (1969–1970).
His wife, Pat, two children, Kristin and Brian, and four grandchildren survived.
Brian Schottenheimer recently agreed to become the Jacksonville Jaguars pass match coordinator, a source told AdamN Schefter of ESPN after previously being the offensive coordinator for the Seattle Seahawks.
“We know he looks down on us from the sky and smiles,” her daughter said. “We’re so incredibly proud of the man who was and how he lived his life.”