Scott Shanle on Will Smith: 'He was a cornerstone to our franchi - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Scott Shanle on Will Smith: 'He was a cornerstone to our franchise'

Many former Saints teammates were shocked at Smith's death, including Pierre Thomas seen here at the scene. (Photo by Michael DeMocker, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune) Many former Saints teammates were shocked at Smith's death, including Pierre Thomas seen here at the scene. (Photo by Michael DeMocker, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune)
NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) -

Less than 24 hours after Will Smith's tragic death in the Lower Garden District, his former Saints teammates still can't believe he's gone.

"I don't know what to say. I'm just stunned about the situation," Saints cornerback Keenan Lewis said. "It's just tough to lose a real good guy like that, a quality A-1 guy. This is just difficult. It's just still hard to believe that happened to him." 

Smith racked up 67.5 sacks in his 10-year career with the Saints. He was a major part of the black and gold's 2009 Super Bowl victory. He was a legend on the field, but just as respected off of it.

"He was unbelievable. I know it's hard for people to understand that didn't get to be around Will the way we did," said former Saints linebacker Scott Shanle. "I will say this, as great a football player as he was on the field, he was 10-times better human being and person off the field. I was lucky to be with him in the locker room and on the field for seven years. Spent a lot of time with him, great conversations, great times on and off the field. Will was one of those guys that there was a reason he was the team captain year in and year out. He was a cornerstone to our franchise Things wouldn't have been accomplished without Will Smith that's for sure."

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