Raleigh. NC ( Associated Press) — Charles Johnson, the former Colorado receiver who won the Super Bowl title with New England in his nine-year NFL career, has died. He was 50 years old.
The university confirmed Johnson’s death on Wednesday through Heritage High School, Wake Forest School, where he was an assistant athletic director.
Reported by WNCN-TV in Raleigh On Wednesday that police found a body in a hotel room on Sunday during a welfare check at Hampton Inn & Suites and that preliminary investigations showed no signs of disturbances.
Johnson was selected 17th overall by Pittsburgh in the 1994 draft. He spent five seasons with the Steelers, two with Philadelphia, helped New England win the Super Bowl in the 2001 season, and ended his career with Buffalo in 2002.
“Words simply cannot explain or identify who CJ was,” said Kordell Stewart, a former quarterback for Johnson’s Colorado and Pittsburgh team. “I’m not sure how to process this properly – we’ve been friends for over 30 years – but just know that CJ will be missed. My heart goes out to Tanisha (his wife), his kids and family. God bless him Bless him and keep him in this difficult time.”
In 133 career regular-season NFL games, Johnson had 354 receptions for 4,606 yards and 24 touchdowns.
In Colorado, Johnson was a freshman on the Buffaloes’ 1990 national championship team and finished with 127 receptions for 2,447 yards and 15 touchdowns.
Colorado head coach Carl Dorrell, who was Johnson’s receivers coach in 1992 and 1993, issued a statement Wednesday, saying:
“I was shocked and very distraught to hear the news about CJ. He was a great man, teammate and an infectious personality. He wore the pride and tradition of buffaloes on his sleeve. One of the best competitors I’ve trained in a WR position. Rest in Peace CJ.”
Johnson starred at Cajon High School in California.