Former first-round pick TE Willie Scott dies at 61

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Willie Scott, a former first-round pick and NFL tight end for the Kansas City Chiefs and New England Patriots, has died at the age of 61, the Patriots and the University of South Carolina announced Tuesday.

Scott needed a heart and kidney transplant after battling heart issues for years, the Charlotte Observer reported. Scott died Monday.

"The New England Patriots are deeply saddened to learn of the loss of former Patriots tight end Willie Scott," the team said in a statement.

Scott was drafted No. 14 overall by the Chiefs in the 1981 draft out of South Carolina. His Gamecocks teammate, George Rogers, was selected No. 1 overall by the New Orleans Saints.

"It's with heavy hearts we mourn the passing of Willie Scott. A great player, but more importantly, a great man and a true Gamecock," South Carolina tweeted.

Scott played in 98 games (42 starts) and caught 89 passes for 766 yards and 15 touchdowns between the Chiefs (1981-85) and Pats (1986-88).

As a senior in college, Scott led the Gamecocks in receptions (27) in 1980 and had 109 receiving yards in the Gator Bowl.

(Field Level Media)