Ralph Norwood

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Ralph Norwood
No. 73
Position: Offensive tackle
Personal information
Date of birth: (1966-01-23)January 23, 1966
Place of birth: New Orleans, Louisiana
Date of death: November 24, 1989(1989-11-24) (aged 23)
Place of death: Atlanta, Georgia
Career information
High school: New Orleans (LA) Perry Walker
College: LSU
NFL Draft: 1989 / Round: 2 / Pick: 38
Career history
Career NFL statistics
Games played: 11
Games started: 1
Player stats at NFL.com

Ralph E. Norwood (January 23, 1966 – November 24, 1989) was an American football offensive tackle in the National Football League. He played 11 games with the Atlanta Falcons in 1989.[1] He was killed in an automobile accident.

Norwood was born in New Orleans, Louisiana to Roy and Elaine Norwood. Norwood was a talented football player, standing 6 ft 7in tall and weighing over 200 lbs in high school, he was formidable on the line. After graduation, he attended LSU and was redshirted his freshman year. He was selected by the Atlanta Falcons in the second round of the 1989 NFL Draft.[2]

Norwood died in a one-car accident on November 24, 1989. Norwood was alone in his car when he crossed over a lane of oncoming traffic, traveled down an embankment and struck a tree.[2] Drugs and alcohol were not found to be factors in the accident.[3] Norwood died eleven games into the 1989 season; he had played in each game and started one game.[2]

The year before Norwood's death, Falcons cornerback David Croudip died of a cocaine overdose. After Norwood's death, Falcons player Mike Kenn commented on the two losses, saying, "There's not a whole lot you can say about this. Once is too much, twice is ridiculous."[4] Less than four weeks after Norwood's accident, Falcons tight end Brad Beckman died when he apparently fell asleep while driving on any icy highway, striking a tree.[5]


  1. ^ "Ralph Norwood NFL Football Statistics". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved April 18, 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c "Car Accident Kills Tackle Norwood : Football: Atlanta Falcons Rookie is Found Dead After His Auto Plunged into a Tree.". Los Angeles Times. November 24, 1989. Retrieved August 22, 2013. 
  3. ^ "No Drug Found in Falcon". The New York Times. November 26, 1989. Retrieved August 22, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Week 12". Chicago Tribune. November 27, 1989. Retrieved August 22, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Tragedy Strikes Falcons Again". Deseret News. December 19, 1989. Retrieved August 22, 2013. 

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