NFL Films president Steve Sabol has died after an 18-month battle with brain cancer. He was 69.
Sabol took over the reins of the company in 1985 when his father, founder Ed Sabol, retired. Steve Sabol introduced his father at the 2011 Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinement only months after he was diagnosed with the cancer.
“Steve Sabol was the creative genius behind the remarkable work of NFL Films,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell wrote in a statement. “Steve’s passion for football was matched by his incredible talent and energy. Steve’s legacy will be part of the NFL forever. He was a major contributor to the success of the NFL, a man who changed the way we look at football and sports, and a great friend.”
Washington Redskins owner Daniel M. Snyder released a statement offering condolences to the Sabol family.
“Steve Sabol, along with his Hall of Fame father, Ed, introduced the world to the great game of football by capturing every essence of the players, coaches and fans,” Snyder said. “Everyone has benefited from Steve and NFL Films’ contribution to the game and we are forever grateful. Steve was the voice of the NFL and his shoes are impossible to fill. Our love, thoughts and prayers go out to his family.”
Sabol won more than 40 Emmy awards and was named the Sports News “Sports Executive of the Year” in 2002.