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Posted: Monday, 11 April 2016 7:06AM

Will Smith's teammates react to his murder

Teammates of Will Smith say news of the former Saint's players violent death on the streets of New Orleans hit them hard.

Former Saints linebacker Scott Shanle earned a Super Bowl ring with Smith. Shanle said he had to break the news to another former teammate from that Super Bowl team.

"Not long after it happened, I was kind of in disbelief. The first guy I called was Jonathan Vilma," Shanle told WWL's Kristian Garic.  "He hadn't heard yet so it was tough to even utter those words to him."

Shanle said Smith wasn't a confrontational guy at all. He said that in fact, the only time Will Smith was ever confrontational was when it was with opposing linemen or quarterbacks on the football field.

Saints offensive lineman Zach Strief describes his feelings.

"There's obviously shock. I think there's anger. I think it's hard to understand," he said of his reaction when he heard about Smith being gunned down after a traffic accidents in the Lower Garden District.

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Strief and Smith played different sides of the ball but the only team they ever played for has been the New Orleans Saints, and after Smith retired from football, Smith maintained a New Orleans residence.

Police arrested 28-year-old Cardell Hayes on charges of second degree murder, and attempted second degree murder, for wounding Smith's wife.

Photo by Chris Bennett

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