Former Buffalo Bills star Mark Pike has passed away at the age of 57-years-old. The longtime NFL veteran was a defensive end and a special teams player while playing in the NFL. Pike was a big part of those early 1990s Bills teams headlined by Jim Kelly and company as Buffalo dominated the AFC.
The cause of death per the official Buffalo Bills team website was Non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He was also recently diagnosed with COVID-19 along with pneumonia.
The comments surrounding the great player have already started to roll in. Legendary general manager Bill Polian said via the team website, “Mark epitomized the high character that we valued so greatly and was the hallmark of our teams. He gave one hundred percent effort on every play and that same commitment to charitable and community endeavors off the field. There was never a better role model as a player and a person than Mark.”
Mark Pike Was A Legend in Buffalo
He was a legend in Buffalo as he only played with the Bills his entire run in the NFL which spanned 13 years. That’s a rarity in this day in age and showed how much the city and the team meant to Mark Pike. Even as a seventh-round pick, Pike found his way on the team as a special-teamer legend. Only a former Patriot has more special-teams stops in their NFL career than Pike. He had 255 across his 13 years.
Another legend, Steve Tasker, told the Bills media website, Mark was really the centerpiece of our league-leading coverage units.” He was the unsung hero for those Bills teams.
Tasker added, “I was kind of a wide guy. I was a gunner, and I was an L-2 on the outside. I wasn’t in there with the threes, fours, and fives very much. Mark was. So, the physicality of special teams was his wheelhouse, and he would routinely blow people up. So, while I would draw some people out and they would have to defend my speed and my ability to keep leverage and cut the field off, he was a freaking bulldozer man. He was an absolute freight train.”
Pike will be survived by his wife, Sharon, and their three children, Ezekiel and Malachi, and Kramer.