Former NFL running back Cedric Benson has died in a motorcycle crash at the age of 36.

The news was announced in a statement to by Benson's attorney, Sam Bassett. The crash occurred on Saturday night in Texas.

Bassett's statement said Benson was "not just a client, he was my friend", adding: "He was immensely talented and fierce on the football field yet most have no idea the difficulties he overcame to achieve what he did."

Benson was drafted fourth overall by the Chicago Bears in 2005 after a prolific college career with the Texas Longhorns, which saw him win the 2004 Doak Walker award as the top running back in college football.

He played in Super Bowl XLI with the Bears, who were beaten 29-17 by Peyton Manning's Indianapolis Colts. Benson went on to play for the Cincinnati Bengals and the Green Bay Packers in an eight-year career, rushing for over 6,000 yards and 32 touchdowns.

A Bears statement on Twitter read: "Our condolences to the friends and family of former Bears running back Cedric Benson, our 4th overall Draft pick in 2005 and member of the 2006 NFC Champions team."

Bengals president Mike Brown told the team's website: "Cedric was a fine football player for us. He played a principal role for several years here, including a couple of playoff runs. His three consecutive 1,000-yard seasons displayed the talent he possessed.

"Our organisation is deeply saddened by his sudden and tragic passing. The Bengals extend our deepest condolences to Cedric's family."

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and Benson's fellow former Longhorns running back Adrian Peterson were among the high-profile NFL players to pay tribute on social media.