Bubba Smith autopsy completed; toxicology tests still pending
An autopsy of NFL star Bubba Smith was completed Thursday, but Los Angeles County coroner’s officials will not be able to determine the exact cause of his death this week until toxicology tests are completed.
Smith, 66, was found dead by a caretaker at his Baldwin Hills home on Wednesday afternoon, authorities said.
“At this stage I can say there was no foul play,” said Ed Winter, deputy chief of the Los Angeles County coroner's office. As is often the case in deaths with no obvious cause, Winter said coroner’s experts are conducting complex examination of levels of materials in the body to get a definitive answer.
A 6-foot-7, 280-pound defensive end, Smith was the No. 1 NFL draft pick from Michigan State University when he joined the Baltimore Colts in 1967.
He played five seasons for the Colts, which included their upset loss to the New York Jets in Super Bowl III and a victory over the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl V. He spent two seasons with the Oakland Raiders and two more with the Houston Oilers before a knee injury ended his career in 1976.
Smith later turned to acting and starred in the hugely popular "Police Academy" movies.
-- Richard Winton
Photo: Bubba Smith in a "Police Academy" film. Credit: Warner Bros. / Getty Images