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New York Jets assistant coach Greg Knapp dies after being struck by car while biking

NEW YORK – New York Jets assistant coach Greg Knapp died Thursday from injuries sustained in a crash when he was hit by a car Saturday near his California home. He is 58 years old.

Knapp’s family released a statement through the team that the longtime NFL assistant coach passed away at 2:32 p.m. EDT.

“Greg Knapp (aka Knapper) has been called back home to Heaven, where he will be reunited with his father,” the statement said.

The family said in the statement that Knapp never regained consciousness after being hit by a car in the San Francisco Bay Area city of San Ramon.

He was surrounded by his wife Charlotte, daughters Jordan, Natalie and Camille, and his mother and brother when he passed away.

“Greg’s contagious personality is most people’s first and lasting memory of him,” the family said. “The phrase ‘He’s never met a stranger’ speaks to Knapper’s lifelong zest. He has a unique gift to make people feel special and for Knapper, that’s all.

“While his family, friends and players still had a lot to learn from him and desperately wished they had more time with him, God called someone who could hear and want directly review the game plan with him. That would certainly be a masterpiece, just like Greg!”

Knapp, who lives in Danville, California, was hired by the Jets in January as a member of new coach Robert Saleh, acting as a passing specialist.

“Losing a loved one is always a challenge, but it’s even harder when it’s completely unexpected,” Saleh said in a statement released by the team. “Charlotte, Jordan, Natalie and Camille, accept our sincerest condolences. Greg has such an inner peace about him that people seem to always turn to him. He lives his life in such a way. His love has helped him connect with people from all walks of life in a unique way.During his short time here, I believe the people in this organization have had the opportunity to experience connection. there.

“Greg, thanks for everything you’ve shared with us. You’ll be missed, brother.”

Among Knapp’s key roles with the Jets was helping develop quarterback Zach Wilson, draft No. 2 overall pick.

“It’s hard,” Wilson wrote on Instagram. “Huge impact on my life in just a few months. Love you Coach Knapper.”

Knapp is loved and respected in NFL circles and he’s established himself as an expert quarterback and one of the league’s top attacking-minded coaches. Among other full-backs he has coached during his career are Steve Young, Jeff Garcia, Rick Mirer, Matt Schaub, Michael Vick, Peyton Manning and Matt Ryan.

Several former Knapp teams and players have posted tributes and condolences to the coach’s family on social media.

From all-time greats like Peyton Manning to young players just starting their careers, Greg is a trusted confidant and the definition of a ‘person’, said the Denver Broncos. whisper’,’ the Denver Broncos said in a statement. “More importantly, the relationships and friendships he has forged with the players, coaches and staff – as well as their families – are genuine and special.”

After nine years as an assistant at Sacramento State, where he also played quarterback, Knapp got his first NFL job with San Francisco in 1997 as an offensive quality control coach under Steve Mariucci. He was promoted to quarterback coach two years later and became the 49ers’ offensive coordinator in 2001.

Knapp joined Jim Mora’s staff in Atlanta as offensive coordinator in 2004, and served in a similar capacity for Oakland (2007-08 and 2012) and Seattle (2009). He has also served as a quarterback coach for Houston (2010-11), Denver (2013-16) – where he helped Manning set a single-season pass record in 2013 – and most recently, in second time with the Falcons (2018-20).

“He is an excellent football coach who has reached the highest levels in our game, but more importantly he is a wonderful person who has love, admiration and respect of those fortunate enough to work with him,” Falcons owner and president Arthur Blank said in a statement. “He has always been a positive presence with the Falcons and carries that optimism every day as he works with our coaches, players and staff on and off the pitch. He will miss him immensely. .”

Knapp was once expected to play a key role in helping offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur and quarterback coach Rob Calabrese teach and develop Wilson as the 21-year-old QB adjusts to NFL life as a starter. head for the Jets this season.

“His legacy is not only working with some of the brightest midfielders the league has ever seen, but countless others in the world on whom he has had an indelible positive influence,” said the owner. Jets president Woody Johnson said in a statement.

Knapp’s family has set up a page on CaringBridge to allow loved ones and friends to post photos, memories or notes. Funeral arrangements have yet to be settled.

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https://abc7chicago.com/new-york-jets-assistant-coach-greg-knapp-dies-struck-by-car-knapper-ny/10905419/ | New York Jets assistant coach Greg Knapp dies after being struck by car while biking

Huynh Nguyen

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