HOUSTON — Houston Texans safety Andre Hal has been diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma and insists he "will beat it."
He received the preliminary diagnosis of cancer of the blood cells from team physician Dr. James Muntz and has consulted with doctors at Houston's MD Anderson Cancer Center, the team said Friday.
The Texans added that Hal is "undergo testing and evaluation and is discussing his treatment options."
Hal is 26 and starting his fifth year with the Texans. He was drafted by Houston in 2014 out of Vanderbilt. He started all 16 games last season and had three interceptions.
"My faith in God and the support from my family, friends, teammates and coaches will see me through this difficult time," Hal said in a statement released through the team. "I will not let this diagnosis stop me from fulfilling my dreams and I do not want anyone to feel sorry for me. I know how to beat this and I will beat it."
The Texans said Hal and his family have requested privacy.
"Andre is tough and faithful and we believe he is prepared to win this fight," the family of team owner Bob McNair said in a statement. "The McNair family as well as the entire Texans organization will continue to be there for him, love and support him, and pray for his recovery."
Coach Bill O'Brien said Hal's illness "weighs heavy on the hearts of everyone in the Houston Texans family."
"We are confident that Andre's resiliency and infectious positivity, along with treatment and care from the best medical community in the world, will guide him through his recovery," O'Brien said. "The entire Texans organization is behind Andre and his family during this difficult time and we look forward to his eventual return to the team."