The Kansas City Chiefs have issued a statement saying that Sunday's scheduled game with the Carolina Panthers will be played as scheduled, just over 24 hours after the horrific murder-suicide involving linebacker Jovan Belcher.
“After discussions between the league office, Head Coach Romeo Crennel and Chiefs team captains, the Chiefs advised the NFL that it will play tomorrow’s game vs. the Carolina Panthers at its originally scheduled time,” the Chiefs statement said.
Belcher killed himself in the parking lot at Arrowhead Stadium with Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel and GM Scott Pioli among those present at the time. Earlier in the day, he had shot and killed his girlfriend, identified as 22-year-old Kasandra Perkins, who is the mother of his infant daughter.
The Chiefs had issued a statement acknowledging a tragedy earlier in the day and team owner Clark Hunt also issued another statement Saturday as well.
“The entire Chiefs family is deeply saddened by today's events, and our collective hearts are heavy with sympathy, thoughts and prayers for the families and friends affected by this unthinkable tragedy,” Hunt's statement read. “We sincerely appreciate the expressions of sympathy and support we have received from so many in the Kansas City and NFL communities, and ask for continued prayers for the loved ones of those impacted.”
“We will continue to fully cooperate with the authorities and work to ensure that the appropriate counseling resources are available to all members of the organization.”
From the sheer standpoint of the magnitude of what happened and how it took place Saturday, how anyone expect Crennel to be able to coach his team on Sunday?
Nonetheless, the NFL is going forward with the game at the very site where Belcher took his own life a day earlier. It is a game that in all honesty has no bearing whatsoever on the playoff picture. The Chiefs are 1-10, the Panthers 3-8.
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Terry McCormick covers the Titans for TitanInsider.com