Junior Seau Had Brain Disease CTE Doctors find NFL great's brain had signs of 'repetitive head injury' By Newser Editors and Wire Services Posted Jan 10, 2013 7:44 AM CST 4 comments Comments In this Jan. 10, 2010, file photo, New England Patriots linebacker Junior Seau (55) warms up on the field before an NFL wild-card playoff football game in Foxborough, Mass. (Charles Krupa) (Newser) – NFL great Junior Seau had a degenerative brain disease when he committed suicide last May, the National Institutes of Health told the AP today. Results of an NIH study of Seau's brain revealed abnormalities consistent with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). The NIH conducted a study of three unidentified brains, one of which was Seau's. It said the findings were similar to autopsies of people "with exposure to repetitive head injury." Seau was an outstanding linebacker for 20 NFL seasons before retiring in 2009. He died of a self-inflicted shotgun wound. Seau joins a list of several dozen American football players who had CTE. Boston University's center for study of the disease reported last month that 34 former pro players and nine who played only college football suffered from CTE. Click for more on the disease.