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Demaryius Thomas had Stage 2 CTE when he died, BU doctors find

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BOSTON -- The late Demaryius Thomas was posthumously diagnosed with CTE -- chronic traumatic encephalopathy -- by doctors from Boston University, the New York Times reported Tuesday.

The former NFL receiver did not die as a result of the Stage 2 CTE, though, as he also suffered seizures, stemming from a 2019 car crash. His cause of death has still not been officially determined after nearly seven months, though "doctors in Boston said he most likely died after a seizure," according to the report. Dr. Ann McKee, the renowned neurologist and neuropathologist who is the director at BU's CTE Center, studied Thomas' brain.

Thomas played 10 seasons in the NFL, mostly with the Denver Broncos, where he made four Pro Bowls and twice made Second Team All-Pro honors, while also winning a Super Bowl with Peyton Manning. He spent part of one season with the Houston Texans and had a training camp stint with the New England Patriots in 2019, before playing his final season with the New York Jets.

He ranks 49th all time in NFL history in receptions, 54th in receiving yards, and is tied for 72nd in touchdown receptions.

Thomas' parents said that he suffered from erratic behavior and paranoia in his final years, despite an effort to stay in playing shape and perhaps play another season in 2020. Katina Smith -- Thomas' mother -- told the Times that Thomas had to leave the celebratory Super Bowl parties after he and the Broncos won a championship in February 2016 because he didn't "feel too good."

"He spent a lot of money on his body and look what happened, you know?" Bobby Thomas  -- his father -- told the Times. "I didn't know that he was that bad off."

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