Former Patriots defensive end Larry Eisenhauer dies at 79

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Former Patriots defensive end Larry Eisenhauer died Wednesday, the team announced. He was 79.

Eisenhauer played nine seasons for the Patriots from 1961-69, was a four-time AFL All-Star selection, a three-time AFL All-Pro and a member of the Patriots 1960s All-Decade Team.

“I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Larry Eisenhauer,” Patriots owner Robert Kraft said in a statement. “I had the pleasure of watching him play for the Boston Patriots in the ‘60s. Not only was he one of the best defensive linemen in the AFL for nearly a decade, but we was also one of the most colorful personalities this franchise has ever known. I think everyone who ever played with him had a Larry Eisenhauer story and loved to retell them at alumni gatherings. He was an AFL All-Star on the field, but made an ever greater impact in the New England community as a Patriots ambassador, always eager to volunteer for our many alumni initiatives. On behalf of my family and the New England Patriots organization, we express our sincerest sympathies to Larry’s family, former teammates and the many friends who will mourn his loss.”

Eisenhauer played at Boston College before the Boston Patriots drafted him in the sixth round in 1961.

Eisenhauer appeared in 115 regular-season games and two playoff contests. He made 47.5 sacks, eighth-most in franchise history.