Yesterday the sports world and pretty much everyone was lost for words when Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher killed his girlfriend Kasandra Perkins and then himself. This situation is especially difficult for his teammates, coaches and everyone else involved in the Chiefs organization. No matter what decisions are made there will be opposition but the Chiefs have to move forward. Read more after the jump.
To the surprise of many the Chiefs have decided to go ahead and play their scheduled 1 PM game against the Carolina Panthers today. Before anyone curses the league and commissioner Roger Goodell (as is customary) it was the decision of the Chiefs captains and the rest of the team personnel to decide if they wanted to play today in which they agreed. Many people may think it’s too soon and the game should have been cancelled but to others this could be the way the team grieves and how they move on. This is especially difficult for head coach Romeo Crennel who was in the parking lot and a witness to Belcher’s suicide. How he can coach a game today is beyond me but everyone is different.
Another issue is how to proceed memorial wise. The death of players or anyone else involved with a sports organization is usually memorialized on the field but Randy Moss of NFL Network reports from Kansas City that there will be no helmet decal or uniform patch, given the circumstances of Belcher’s death and the events preceding it. Per Moss, there may be a moment of silence, but it would be for victims of family violence generally, not for Belcher specifically. I won’t pass judgement on Belcher because I have no idea what led him to do what he did but it would be unfair to honor him when he’s left a 3 month old girl an orphan taking the life of her mother and himself.
This is truly a difficult situation all the way around and there is no absolute right way to proceed. We just have to show support to the Chiefs and hope they are able to get through this difficult time.