Dec 15, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; ESPN broadcaster John Clayton smiles prior to the game between the Los Angeles Rams and the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Hall of Fame NFL writer and reporter John Clayton died on Friday after a “battle with a brief illness,” according to the Seattle Seahawks. He was 67.

The news was first reported by friends and colleagues of Clayton’s. Chris Mortensen — a longtime colleague of Clayton’s at ESPN — reported that John’s wife, Pat, asked the Seahawks to release further information. Mortensen added that Clayton “passed peacefully.”

Clayton is one of the most respected reporters in NFL history, best-known for his work with ESPN from 1995-2017.

“The Professor” was known for being a true pro at the job, but also showed off his personality and sense of humor frequently, as demonstrated by his classic “This is SportsCenter” commercial (shown above).

The Seattle-based reporter spent the last few years contributing for ESPN Radio in Seattle (Seattle Sports 710 AM) and 104.3 The Fan in Denver. He also spent five seasons as a reporter for the Seattle Seahawks Radio Network.

In 2007, Clayton received the Dick McCann Memorial Award from the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The well-deserved honor recognizes “long and distinguished reporting on professional football.”

About Matt Clapp

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