SBD/December 4, 2012/Franchises

Chiefs Praised For Handling Murder-Suicide "With Class"

The Chiefs will not wear helmet stickers or armbands in memory of Belcher
The Chiefs in the wake of LB Jovan Belcher’s murder-suicide should be given “credit for so far handling a dreadful situation as well as possible,” according to Sam Mellinger of the K.C. STAR. The team has been “sensitive” to the situation and handled it “with class.” The franchise is remembering “victims of domestic abuse, never losing sight that this tragedy has wounded two families forever.” Mellinger: “This is the balancing act that defines the Chiefs’ eerie and sad new world. Nobody is sure exactly how to navigate this. There are no good answers, no solutions.” Belcher’s bio has been “wiped from the team’s website, and owner Clark Hunt has made it clear there will be no helmet stickers or armbands or other public displays honoring a man who killed an innocent woman.” The message “against domestic abuse and that Belcher’s final acts affected two families comes straight from the top.” Belcher’s stadium locker was “maintained after the game, his jersey displayed in a way that came closer to honoring the man than anything else the team has done.” Internally, there is “concern about how clearing the locker will be taken by some players but also how it looks to a public sickened by a string of horrendous acts.” That is “just one of a thousand questions without satisfying answers now facing the Chiefs” (K.C. STAR, 12/4). ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Chiefs players are "in the process of setting up a trust fund" for the three-month-old daughter of Belcher and his girlfriend, Kasandra Perkins. The NFLPA also spent part of yesterday "making sure that it is setting up its own trust fund so that these men can somehow look out for the little baby girl that’s been left behind” (“Monday Night Countdown,” ESPN, 12/3).

The topic of whether Sunday's Panthers-Chiefs game should have been rescheduled was discussed on ESPN's "Around The Horn" yesterday. Denver Post columnist Woody Paige said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell “should have stepped in and said, ‘No, we’re not playing this game for a variety of reasons.’” SB Nation’s Bomani Jones said the “complexity of this situation indicates that they should not have played the game. The fact that they did a moment of silence and couldn’t even figure out how to name anyone that had died tells you how difficult this was for everybody" (“Around The Horn,” ESPN, 12/3).
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