Houston Texans offensive tackle David Quessenberry announced Tuesday that he has been diagnosed with cancer.
The 2013 sixth-round pick out of San Jose State, who missed all of his rookie season with a broken foot, shared the news on Twitter:
I have been diagnosed with cancer. My fight has just begun. As long as I have breath in my lungs I will fight this disease, and I will win.— David Quessenberry (@DavidQberry) June 10, 2014
Can't even begin to express my gratitude to the amazing outpouring of Love and Prayers for me and my family. The support has been incredible— David Quessenberry (@DavidQberry) June 10, 2014
Quessenberry's agency, Rep 1 Sports, released a statement on the matter:
It is with a heavy heart that we must announce that a member of our REP 1 Family has been diagnosed with Lymphoma. Houston Texans 23-year-old offensive lineman, David Quessenberry, will be leaving the game for an extended period of time while he undergoes treatment for Non-Hodgkins T Lymphoblastic Lymphoma.
David was diagnosed with the illness last Tuesday. He believed he had been suffering from a chest cold when he experienced shortness of breath at a Texans practice on June 3rd. David was admitted to MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston later that day, where he immediately began treatment that evening.
The goal of David's treatment is to cure the disease, so he can return to the life that he has worked so hard to earn. David is extremely positive and determined to win this fight against cancer. Our love for David is strong and we are praying for him and his family during this difficult time. All of your positive thoughts and prayers for David are encouraged and appreciated.
Houston Texans general manager Rick Smith reflected optimism in reacting to the news:
GM Rick Smith: "We are extremely confident in the care and treatment David will receive. He is a fighter and a courageous young man."— Houston Texans (@HoustonTexans) June 10, 2014
Brian Smith of the Houston Chronicle provides details on Quessenberry's condition:
Hematologist, cancer specialist Dr. Jack Jacoub said #Texans' Quessenberry has a high-grade lymphoma that requires intensive chemotherapy— Brian T. Smith (@ChronBrianSmith) June 10, 2014
Ian Rapoport of NFL Network lauded the Texans' medical staff, citing it as one of the reasons first-year head coach Bill O'Brien took the job:
One positive for David Quessenberry (lymphoma): Houston’s medical facilities are fantastic. It helped draw Bill O’Brien, whose son benefits.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) June 10, 2014
James Palmer of CSN Houston added more from O'Brien, along with how everyone on the Texans knows the toughness Quessenberry possesses:
“Bill O’Brien, “I want everybody to know, especially David Quessenberry, we’re very much in David Quessenberry's corner.” #Texans— James Palmer (@JPalmerCSN) June 10, 2014
Bill O’Brien said the staff have been over to visit David Quessenberry several times. Added he’s at MD Anderson, one of the best.— James Palmer (@JPalmerCSN) June 10, 2014
From every player we talked to today, they all said the same thing. David Quessenberry is as tough as they come. #Texans— James Palmer (@JPalmerCSN) June 10, 2014
San Francisco 49ers Pro Bowler Joe Staley reached out to Quessenberry on Twitter, as did Quessenberry's teammate in star running back Arian Foster, among others:
@DavidQberry stay strong, Quiz!— Arian Foster (@ArianFoster) June 10, 2014
ESPN's Andrew Brandt added his thoughts on a similar situation he recalled:
Re Quessenberry/Texans, remember having rookie punter - Josh Bidwell -diagnosed w/cancer in training camp. Stops you in your tracks.— Andrew Brandt (@adbrandt) June 10, 2014
Quessenberry was a first-team all-conference selection in the WAC during his final collegiate season with the Spartans. That was evidently enough to catch Smith's eye, as Quessenberry came from the lesser known program and did enough to stay with the team leading up to the 2013 campaign.
NFL Network expert Mike Mayock praised Quessenberry's ability to plug in at multiple positions in the offensive trenches when the San Jose State standout was drafted by Houston. By participating in the 2013 Senior Bowl, he became the first offensive lineman in Spartans history to do so, per CBSSports.com. That is indicative of the type of talent Quessenberry brings to the gridiron.
But for Quessenberry at the moment, he appears determined to tackle the disease and win the fight against it. That is the proper attitude to have, and the hope is that he is one day able to resume his profession. Based on how hard he's worked to date to get to where he is, Quessenberry has the power to overcome this.
Thoughts go out to Quessenberry's family, friends and others impacted by this development. Here's to a speedy and full recovery.