Ray Easterling, a member of the Atlanta Falcons' famed "Grits Blitz" defense of the 1970s, committed suicide on Thursday, FOXSports.com has learned.
Easterling died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at his home in Richmond, Va., according to police. The Falcons also confirmed the death, although the team didn't release any specifics.
Easterling, 62, was found by his wife, Mary Ann, who contacted police at 6:14 am on Thursday. Easterling was dead when police arrived with a handgun nearby, Richmond police Captain Yvonne Crowder told FOXSports.com.
"Based on our investigation, we are ruling it a suicide," Crowder said.
Easterling started for the Falcons for four years (1974-77) and led the defensive secondary that established a team recorded for interceptions (26) in 1977. That same season, the Falcons set an NFL record for the fewest points allowed in a season (129 points).
Easterling was one of more than a thousand players that have sued the NFL over ...