Seau’s girlfriend phoned police at 9:35 a.m. when she found the linebacker unconscious in their Oceanside, Calif., home.
When the fire department arrived, reported NESN.com, it attempted to revive Seau, however, it was ineffective. A hand gun was found near the body.
The Patriots released a statement this afternoon, saying:
"We were shocked to hear of the initial reports regarding Junior Seau earlier today and are deeply saddened by the news of his death. We were fortunate to have had Junior join the Patriots in 2006 and are thankful for his many contributions to the team over the next four years. He had a legendary NFL career and his unrivaled passion for the game quickly made him a fan favorite here in New England. This is a sad day for the entire Patriots organization, our coaches and his many Patriots teammates. Our heartfelt thoughts and prayers go out to his family and his many friends who will mourn this loss."
Seau, 43, played his final four seasons (2006-09) in the NFL for New England, including the 2007 season, when the Patriots nearly completed the perfect season. It was the second time he played in a Super Bowl, his first coming with the San Diego Chargers years before.
The San Diego Chargers chose the veteran linebacker in the first round of the 1990 NFL Draft, fifth overall. In his 20 years in the NFL (13 with San Diego, three with the Miami Dolphins, four with the Patriots), the USC product competed in 268 games, recorded 1526 tackles and 56.5 sacks.
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