Longtime NFL quarterback, coach Wade Wilson dies at age 60

Wade Wilson, who spent 18 years in the NFL as a quarterback and another 17 as quarterbacks coach, died on Friday.

It was the day of his 60th birthday.

According to a release from the Dallas Cowboys, Wilson passed away at his home in Coppell, Texas.

An eighth-round draft pick of the Minnesota Vikings in 1981, Wilson spent a decade with the Vikings, appearing in 76 games with 48 starts. He was named to the Pro Bowl in 1988, when he had 10 starts (14 appearances) and led the NFL with a 61.4 completion percentage.

Wilson spent the 1992 season with the Atlanta Falcons, 1993-94 with the New Orleans Saints, 1995-97 with the Cowboys, and 1998-99 with the Oakland Raiders.

In 2000, Wilson began his new career as a quarterbacks coach. His first job was guiding his former teammate, Troy Aikman. Though he spent three seasons with the Bears (2004-06), Wilson returned to the Cowboys in 2007, coaching Tony Romo and then Dak Prescott.

14 PHOTOS
Wade Wilson through his NFL career
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Wade Wilson through his NFL career
TAMPA, FL - SEPTEMBER 14: QB Wade Wilson #11 of the Minnesota Vikings thinks about the plays he will use in a NFL game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Tampa stadium on September 14, 1986 in Tampa, Florida. The Vikings won 23 to 10. (Photo by Michael Minardi/Getty Images)
TAMPA, FL - SEPTEMBER 14: QB Tommy Kramer #9 and QB Wade Wilson #11 of the Minnesota Vikings get refreshments and a towel from the waterboy during a NFL game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Tampa Stadium on September 14, 1986 in Tampa, Florida. The Vikings won 23 to 10. (Photo by Michael Minardi/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, D.C. - JANUARY 17: Wade Wilson #11 of the Minnesota Vikings throws a pass against the Washington Redskins during the NFC Conference Championship game January 17, 1988 at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C.. The Redskins won the game 17-10. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CA: Wade Wilson of the Minnesota Vikings circa 1989 against the Los Angeles Rams at Anaheim Stadium in Aaheim, California. (Photo by Owen C. Shaw/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 8: Quarterback Wade Wilson #11 of the Minnesota Vikings watches from the sideline against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta Fulton-County Stadium on September 8, 1991 in Atlanta, Georgia. The Vikings defeated the Falcons 20-19. (Photo by Gin Ellis/Getty Images)
3 Oct 1993: Quarterback Wade Wilson of the New Orleans Saints looks to pass the ball during a game against the Los Angeles Rams at Anaheim Stadium in Anaheim, California. The Saints won the game, 37-6. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Dunn /Allsport
DALLAS, TX - NOVEMBER 12: Running Back Emmitt Smith #22 of the Dallas Cowboys in action takes the hand off from quarterback Wade Wilson #11 against the San Francisco 49ers November 12, 1995 during an NFL football game at Texas Stadium in Dallas, Texas. Smith played for the Cowboys from 1990-02. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
23 Aug 1998: Quarterback Wade Wilson #16 of the Oakland Raiders in action during the game against the Arizona Cardinals at Oakland Colesium in Oakland, California. The Cardinals defeated the Raiders 21-14.
Chicago Bears quarterbacks coach Wade Wilson during a game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Chicago Bears at Soldier Field in Chicago, Il on December 17, 2006. The Bears won 34 - 31 in overtime. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
Quarterback Tony Romo of the Dallas Cowboys, right, laughs with QB coach Wade Wilson during training camp on Thursday, August 9, 2012, in Oxnard, California. (Ron Jenkins/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT via Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys quarterback coach Wade Wilson, back left, joins backup quarterback Brad Johnson in watching as the Cowboys face the Denver Broncos during the morning practice Thursday, Aug. 14, 2008, in Englewood, Colo. The teams will face each other in an NFL exhibition football game on Saturday in Denver. Wilson sought out Broncos quarterback Jay Cutler to impart some advice about Type 1 diabetes, which they both have. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Brad Johnson (14) and quarterbacks coach Wade Wilson during practice at the Cowboys football training facility in Irving, Texas, Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2008. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
FILE - In this Aug. 29, 2013, file photo, Dallas Cowboys quarterback coach Wade Wilson calls a play during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the Houston Texans in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys say former NFL quarterback and longtime assistant coach Wade Wilson passed away Friday, Feb. 1, 2019, at his home in Coppell, Texas. The team didn’t specify a cause of death for Wilson, who died on his 60th birthday. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez, File)
FILE - In this Aug. 24, 2013, file photo, Dallas Cowboys quarterbacks coach Wade Wilson during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals Saturday, in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys say former NFL quarterback and longtime assistant coach Wade Wilson passed away Friday, Feb. 1, 2019, at his home in Coppell, Texas. The team didn’t specify a cause of death for Wilson, who died on his 60th birthday. (AP Photo/Sharon Ellman, File)
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Yahoo’s Charles Robinson wrote in 2016 that Wilson played a big role in Dallas ultimately drafting Prescott in the fourth round that year.

“He remained a big Kellen Moore backer behind Romo, but believed Prescott had the skills to develop down the line,” Robinson wrote.

Aikman tweeted, “Sad news today we lost a teammate far too soon. Wade Wilson was my backup from 1995-97 and my QB coach my last season in 2000. Prayers for his children and family.”

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