The great NFL linebacker Junior Seau killed himself in 2012. Seau had spent 20 years in the NFL — most of them filled with the kind of glory, accomplishment, and pure physical satisfaction that few people ever get to experience. His performance and his exemplary attitude — the honor and dignity with which he conducted himself made him a surefire Hall of Famer. This weekend, Seau was inducted — as was inevitable — into the Hall of Fame in Canton. Only he wasn’t there, of course.
Seau’s family still has an unsettled wrongful death lawsuit against the NFL, which the family believes didn’t do enough to protect Seau from brain injuries that may have influenced his decision to take his own life. But in talking about Seau in Canton, the late great linebacker’s daughter Sydney Seau kept the focus on football, not its ugly aftermath. “I think he’s the epitome or the perfect match to football. They’re both stubborn, they’re both relentless, competitive, hard hitting. I feel like he changed what the embodiment of passion is in the game.”