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Beloved ESPN NFL Insider Chris Mortensen Dead at 72



Chris Mortensen interview on Saint Vincent College Youtube

Chris Mortensen, a beloved NFL Insider and commentator for ESPN, passed away this week at the age of 72. No cause of death has been released.

Mortensen’s loss shocked many in the NFL world, including his colleague at ESPN, Mike Greenberg. 

“Chris Mortensen was one of the kindest, most generous gentlemen you could ever come across, in any field,” Greenberg tweeted. “His professionalism and decency earned him universal admiration – his enthusiasm and good nature made him everyone’s friend. His mark on the business will last a long time, his impact on those of us lucky enough to know him well will last the rest of our lives. Rest in peace, Mort. We will treasure your memory forever.”

Mortensen, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2016, announced his retirement from his position at ESPN last year.

While live on air on Sunday afternoon, the NFL Network ended its coverage of the 2024 NFL Scouting Combine with an on-screen tribute to Mortensen.

Chris began working at ESPN in 1991, where he became one of the most popular NFL reporters in the country. Mortensen frequently appeared on shows throughout the network. Mortensen was also responsible for breaking some of the top stories surrounding the league, such as Peyton Manning’s retirement in 2016.

After being diagnosed with throat cancer in 2016, Chris briefly stepped away from his position at ESPN but returned to the network shortly after.

In addition to his time with ESPN, Mortensen also worked for other outlets, such as The Sporting News, The National, and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

ESPN Chairman Jimmy Pitaro released a statement following Mortensen’s passing.

“Mort was widely respected as an industry pioneer and universally beloved as a supportive, hard-working teammate,” ESPN chairman Jimmy Pitaro said in a statement. “He covered the NFL with extraordinary skill and passion, and was at the top of his field for decades. He will truly be missed by colleagues and fans, and our hearts and thoughts are with his loved ones.”

Rest in peace!

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