The San Francisco 49ers revealed some unfortunate news on Friday, releasing a statement on former linebacker and linebackers coach Ed Beard, who passed away on Monday at the age of 83.
The San Francisco 49ers are mourning the passing of Ed Beard who played 8 seasons with the team from 1965-1972. Our deepest condolences to his wife Bobbie, his family, and friends.https://t.co/26qgnTiQzd pic.twitter.com/PKC4smc3qi
— San Francisco 49ers (@49ers) January 20, 2023
Beard played for the 49ers from 1965-1972, first starring in a starting role at middle linebacker before transitioning to special teams, where he became the first special teams captain in NFL history.
He played in 97 games over the course of his eight-year NFL career, which was ultimately cut short due to injuries.
After his playing career, he became a linebackers coach for the 49ers and later the New Orleans Saints before becoming a defensive coordinator for the Detroit Lions.
While he was a stalwart for the 49ers and helped lead them to three straight NFC West titles from 1970-1972, he was perhaps even more important in the locker room during his time in San Francisco.
Beard received the Len Eshmont Award in 1971, which is an award voted on by 49ers players that is for the player who shows the “inspirational and courageous play” of Len Eshmont.
While Beard is a player that has been mostly forgotten by the typical NFL fan, 49ers fans took to social media to offer their condolences after his unfortunate passing.
The reason I'm a Niners fan, he worked with my dad during the off season in Va. Got to meet him and get autograph. RIP Ed…
— David J. Murphy (@Bsehitz) January 20, 2023
Sadness.. Ed Beard 💔 pic.twitter.com/c62kHpCdlg
— jErEM!@H (@pistons15) January 20, 2023
Ed Beard was a native of Fredericksburg, Virginia where he received the high honor of being inducted into the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame in 2002.
[San Francisco 49ers on Twitter]