Junior Seau had Chronic Traumatic Encephelopathy (CTE), the results of studies on his brain by the National Institutes of Health have revealed. Last year, the 43 year old Seau committed suicide by shooting himself in the chest, just like Dave Duerson had done. Just like Duerson, the results of the brain autopsy revealed that he was suffering from the same brain condition as Duerson and several other deceased former NFL players who have had their brains studied.
His death less than a year ago sent shockwaves around the country and through the football community. Few players played in more games or embodied the ethos of the football player. We will never know exactly what causes any individual to commit suicide, and we won’t know in Junior’s case. The news that his brain was damaged, though, will continue to drive the debate and discussion about how the game needs to, and whether it really can, change.
[photo via USA Today Sports Images]