The New Orleans Saints mourn the loss of Daren Gilbert, who passed away this weekend at the age of 58. Gilbert was a second-round draft choice by the Saints in 1985 and played 43 career games with 11 starts for the team.
After developing as an offensive lineman and contributing on special teams, Gilbert started five games at left tackle in 1987, the year of the Saints' first winning season and first playoff berth. He started six of the last seven games in 1988 due to injuries along the offensive line.
A native of Southern California, Gilbert attended Cal State-Fullerton, where he started every game for three straight seasons and was the team's co-captain.
Playing both right and left tackle in college as well as professionally, Gilbert had extremely quick feet and was very agile for a 6-6, 285-pound frame, which was credited from playing soccer also as a youth. Breaking his left hand when young, forced him to use his right as well and become ambidextrous, accounting for his ability to move comfortably to either side of the line as a collegian and professional.
Gilbert's son, Jarron, was a former defensive end at San Jose State and a third round draft pick of the Chicago Bears in 2009, playing for the Bears, New York Jets and Bills from 2009-11.