Thomas Howard, who used to play for the National Football League's (NFL) Oakland Raiders, Cincinnati Bengals, and Atlanta Falcons, got killed in a car crash on Monday morning at Interstate Highway 880 in Oakland, California. The tragic news was confirmed on the official Web site of NFL.

It was reported that Howard was driving a gray BMW 750Li sedan at speed between 100 and 110 kilometres per hour. It appeared that he lost control of the car and hit the rear of a semi-truck. Then Howard and his car were thrown on to the southbound lane and eventually hit two more vehicles, a Chevrolet Monte Carlo and a grey Honda CR-V, police authorities say.

Howard and the driver of one of the other cars that got involved in the collision were dead on the spot. The other driver was reportedly brought to the nearest hospital, but his condition was not made known.

Intoxication due to alcohol is not being ruled out as the cause of the accident.

Howard's family thanked everyone who has given their support and prayers after the tragic accident. "We are grateful for the prayers, support, and love we have received today," a representative of the family said in a statement. "We ask that you respect the privacy of our family during this difficult time, and we hope that you continue to pray for us," the representative added.

Howard's former Raiders teammate Kirk Morrison was also deeply saddened of his passing. "Words cannot describe how I am feeling right now," Morrison wrote on Instagram. "I truly lost a brother today in Thomas Howard," wrote Morrison.

Howard made his debut in the NFL in 2006 when he was drafted by the Oakland Raiders. He played for the Raiders for four years, from 2006 to 2010 before he signed a 2-year contract worth $6.5 million with the Cincinnati Bengals. He was signed by the Atlanta Falcons on Oct. 20, 2013, but later on released in just less than a month. He only played two games for the Falcons.


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