Former Detroit Lions and Los Angeles Chargers linebacker Jessie Lemonier dies aged 25


Jessie Lemonier during his time with the Los Angeles Chargers on the sidelines during a 21-16 Carolina Panthers win at SoFi Stadium on September 27, 2020. (Harry How/Getty Images)

Ben Morse, CNN

CNNFormer Detroit Lions and Los Angeles Chargers linebacker Jessie Lemonier died on Thursday aged 25, according to a statement from the Lions.

“We are shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of former Detroit Lion Jessie Lemonier,” the team said on Twitter.

“Jessie was a model team mate and wonderful young man who is gone far too soon. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends during this difficult time.”

The Chargers also paid tribute to Lemonier, saying he was “gone too soon.”

“Our hearts are with Jessie’s family, friends and loved ones,” the team wrote on Twitter.

The Lions did not provide details on the cause of death.

Born in Hialeah, Florida, Lemonier had played college football at Liberty University before entering the 2020 NFL draft. He signed with the Chargers as an undrafted free agent shortly afterwards.

After being waived, Lemonier was signed to the team’s practice squad before being elevated to its active roster weeks later.

During his time with Los Angeles, he played in six games, making two tackles before being waived.

He spent the 2021 season with the Lions, playing in seven games – starting two – finishing with 15 total tackles and 1.5 sacks.

Last summer, he had been on the Arizona Cardinals’ practice squad, recording a sack in a preseason game, before being released.

Lemonier had been drafted by the XFL’s Arlington Renegades in November last year but earlier this month, Lemonier signed with the Houston Gamblers in the United States Football League before being traded to the Birmingham Stallions.

His agent, Drew Smith, told ESPN that Lemonier had been expecting a child with his girlfriend.