CHARLOTTE, N.C., April 18 (UPI) -- Carolina Panthers linebackers coach and former NFL star Sam Mills died Monday of Cancer, the team reported.
Mills was 45. He was diagnosed with intestinal cancer in August 2003.
"Sam's passing is an enormous loss," Coach John Fox said. "He worked with our staff throughout his illness and was an inspiration to everyone. As a coach, he made the players better. As a friend, he made us all better.
Mills, a linebacker in his playing days, was selected for the Pro Bowl five times in a 12-year NFL career with New Orleans and Carolina.
His career statistics include 1,319 tackles, 20.5 sacks, 11 interceptions and four touchdowns.
"Words are inadequate to express what Sam meant to the Panthers organization," said Jerry Richardson, the team's owner. "We were privileged to have him as a member of our family, and we are devastated over this loss."