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Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers LB Keith McCants

What happened to Keith McCants? How did he die?

Former University of Alabama and NFL defensive player Keith McCants died at his home in St. Petersburg, Florida on Thursday morning. The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office was called to McCant's home following reports of an unresponsive person when they found him. The cause of death is not known at this time but is still under investigation.

Since September 2019, Keith McCants was a co-host on "Hear it Now! with Barry Edwards" radio show that broadcasts every Friday in Tampa Bay.


Keith McCants' NFL and collegiate career

Keith McCants was born and raised in Alabama and was a basketball and football player through high school. McCants earned a football scholarship to the University of Alabama after ranking as one of the top high school football players in the state of Alabama.

Keith McCants was a standout for the Crimson Tide football program, playing linebacker and recording 197 total tackles, which included 16 tackles for loss. He still holds the record for most tackles in a single season at the University of Alabama. He was an All-American at Alabama and was the MVP of the 1989 Iron Bowl.

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Keith McCants was projected to be drafted first overall in the 1990 NFL Draft but, due to injury concerns, he dropped. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers drafted Keith McCants with the fourth overall pick and he signed a five-year deal worth $7.4 million. The Buccaneers converted McCants from a linebacker to a defensive end because of his size and the level of play that he exerted.


McCants was released by the Buccaneers in the summer of 1993, although he led the team in sacks the season prior.

He then played for the Houston Oilers for the next two seasons and then the Arizona Cardinals the following two seasons.

Keith McCants finished his NFL career with 88 games played, 184 tackles, 13.5 sacks, six fumble recoveries and one interception.

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McCants post-NFL career

Kevin McCants featured in an ESPN 30 for 30 documentary broadcast in 2012 called 'Broke'. The show detailed some of the financial troubles suffered by former professional football players.

After his NFL playing career, Keith McCants became a marine police officer in Alabama with the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. He was the first Black officer to serve in the marine police in Alabama.


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Edited by
Samuel Green
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