Kansas City Chiefs fans are mourning the death of franchise legend Ed Budde. Makenzie Koch and John Holt of Fox 4 KC reported that the former left guard passed away on December 19, 2023, due to natural causes. He passed away at age 83 while sleeping beside Carolyn, his wife, for 65 years.

Edward Leon Budde was born in Highland Park, Michigan, on November 2, 1940. Before attending Michigan State University, he went to Edwin C. Denby High School in Detroit. Budde’s daughter, Tionne Ellegard, confirmed the news of her father’s passing. He is also survived by sons John and Brad.

Ed Budde was loyal to the Kansas City Chiefs

Budde played his entire 14-year career for the Chiefs, spanning the franchise’s stints in the American Football League and the National Football League. Only punters Jerrel Wilson and Dustin Colquitt have spent more seasons with the squad.

The Chiefs also made an official announcement of Budde’s passing on Twitter.

Though the Philadelphia Eagles selected him fourth overall in the 1963 NFL Draft, Ed Budde chose to play for the Chiefs, who picked him eighth overall in their draft. The 1962 First Team All-American built a successful career by lining up with his left hand down instead of his right.

This unusual leverage allowed him to clear the way for running backs and repel pass rushers away from quarterback Len Dawson. This technique made him a two-time First Team All-AFL member, a five-time AFL All-Star, and an AFL All-Time Team member.

He also helped the Kansas City Chiefs win the 1966 and 1969 AFL championships. Budde became a two-time Pro Bowler after the AFL merged with the NFL.

More importantly, he was a vital cog in the team’s Super Bowl IV victory over the Minnesota Vikings by neutralizing Hall of Fame defensive tackle Alan Page.

Ed Budde retired after the 1976 season. He played 177 games and did not miss a regular-season start from 1963 to 1971. Budde was the first offensive lineman chosen as Associated Press Player of the Week. These achievements earned him a spot in the Chiefs Hall of Fame.

Budde was also inducted into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame (1998) and the MSU Athletics Hall of Fame (2012).

Brad and Ed Budde’s father-son act in Kansas City

While Brad Budde described Ed as a great father, he also inspired him to play football. Ed Budde’s influence made his son a Unanimous All-American for the University of Southern California in 1979.

The Chiefs took notice, selecting him 11th overall in the 1980 draft. This decision made Ed and Brad Budde the only father-son tandem to be chosen in the first round by the same team. The younger Budde played his entire seven-season career with Kansas City.

While the Buddes both wore jersey number 71, Brad also wore 66. Together, they also announced Rashee Rice’s selection in the second round of the 2023 draft.


After his football career, Ed Budde became one of the ten founding Kansas City Ambassadors members. He also served as president of the NFL Players Association’s Kansas City Chapter.

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Edited by Lance Fernandez

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