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Zach Thomas Calls Junior Seau 'His Hero'

The death of former NFL linebacker Junior Seau has caused a lot of reaction from around the league and media world, as Seau was almost universally liked by everyone he came into contract with, played with, or played against. One played Seau spent some time playing with was former Miami Dolphins linebacker Zach Thomas, as Seau played three seasons with the Dolphins.

Thomas developed a relationship with Seau and called him his "hero" and the "greatest linebacker to ever play the game" in a statement about the linebacker's death:

"I have never been around a man with more love and passion for the game of football than Junior Seau, and he lived life the same way. Junior was always fun to be around, always positive and made every person who knew him feel like he was their best friend. You never heard one negative word come out of his mouth. Junior just had this energy that followed him around wherever he went, almost like theme music. It was like he never had a bad day.

"As a young linebacker, Junior was my hero growing up and once I had the opportunity meet him I saw that he was everything I hoped he would be and more. Getting the chance to play along side of Junior Seau, the greatest linebacker to ever play the game, made my dreams come true. I am absolutely devastated to hear this news. Today I lost my hero, my friend, my buddy."

For more on the Miami Dolphins and reaction to Junio Seau's death, visit SB Nation's Dolphins blog The Phinsider.

Photographs by cstreet.us, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.