Former NFL player Mike Williams died of dental-related sepsis, the coroner said

Brian Blanco/AP

Mike Williams, a former NFL wide receiver, played four seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.


Former NFL wide receiver Mike Williams' cause of death has been determined to be dental-related sepsis, according to a preliminary case summary. a report Issued by the Hillsborough County Medical Examiner's Office.

Williams died on September 12 in Tampa, Florida, following a construction accident. CNN reported earlier. The 36-year-old was involved in a work-related accident on Aug. 21, in which “heavy supplies landed on his head,” according to the medical examiner’s office.

He was then admitted to the intensive care unit at an area hospital. The report said he suffered a cardiac arrest before being intubated and sedated.

The cause of death was listed as “bacterial sepsis with brain abscesses and necrotizing pneumonia due to multiple tooth decay and remaining tooth roots,” the initial coroner's report said. A comprehensive autopsy report will be released at a later date, according to the Medical Examiner's Office.

Williams' manner of death was described as natural. Cardiovascular disease has also been listed as a contributing factor.

In an email to CNN on Saturday morning, Hillsborough County Medical Examiner's Office spokesman Chris Wilkerson said that with county records dating back to the “mid-1980s,” this is the first known death attributed to dental-related sepsis.

Williams was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the fourth round of the 2010 NFL Draft out of Syracuse University. A native of Buffalo, New York, Williams was voted runner-up for the Associated Press Offensive Rookie of the Year after catching 65 passes for 964 yards and 11 touchdowns. He started all 16 games for the Buccaneers in his first year.

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Williams played four seasons with Tampa BayHe was then traded to his hometown team, the Buffalo Bills. He played one season with the Bills.

Williams had 223 receptions for 3,089 yards and 26 touchdowns in 63 NFL games throughout his career.

CNN's Wayne Sterling contributed to this report.

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