New York Giants All-Pro punter Dave Jennings died Wednesday morning. He was 61. For the last two decades ,Jennings fought Parkinson’s disease. Jennings was also known as an extraordinary broadcaster.
Jennings spent 11 seasons (1974-1984) punting for the New York Giants. He was elected to the Pro Bowl four times. Three of the four selections were consecutive from 1978-1980. Jennings played for a short time with the New York Jets from (1985-1987).
Jennings maintains the New York Giants franchise records for punts (931) and yards (38,792). Jennings punted for 4,000 yards or more in a season from 1979-81 and recorded a career-best 44.8-yard average in 1980. The Giants co-owner and also team president John Mara released a team statement.
“Dave Jennings was one of the all-time great Giants. He was a valued member of the Giants family for more than 30 years as a player and a broadcaster, and we were thrilled to include him in our Ring of Honor. More importantly, he was an outstanding person who battled his illness with rare courage and dignity. We will miss him dearly.”
Jennings graduated from St Lawrence University and after his NFL career became a broadcaster. He was a color commentator on Jets games from 1988-2001, then later went on to work with Bob Papa and the late Dick Lynch for the Giants radio from 2002-07.
Jennings was remembered by Hall of Fame linebacker Harry Carson who went on to say:
“The Giants were not very good when Dave and I were teammates in the 1970s. Dave was one of the few bright lights on those teams as a punter. Dave was very serious about conditioning. He was the punter, but he was in great shape. He was a fantastic athlete.”
Former Jets defensive lineman Marty Lyons, an ex-teammate who spoke about finding out about Jennings condition, “My heart just broke,” Lyons said:
“You saw a former teammate, a guy who was so healthy, and now he was fighting this terrible disease. All you can say is, he’s in a better place now. With all the suffering he endured, fighting that disease, you’ve got to know that his heart is in a better place.”