Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher's killing the mother of his child and later himself this past Saturday morning had little, if anything, to do with Lexington. But the after effects of this tragedy could hit close to home.
Maybe it'll turn out that concussions or traumatic brain injuries played some role in sparking those unconscionable actions. And maybe that will make a parent prioritize player safety should he or she allow a child to play football.
Maybe the image of a hulking 25-year-old linebacker, a man considered a leader by his teammates, holding a gun to his head outside Kansas City's practice facility will incite a conversation about gun control among a new demographic. And maybe that conversation will include young people here in Lexington.
Or maybe a video will go viral. A video in which Brady Quinn, the embattled Chiefs quarterback, gives a remarkable postgame address that reminds us to think about our own relationships. And maybe we'll listen.
To watch Quinn’s address, click on the YouTube video embedded above. If it's not already cued up, skip ahead to the 4:21 mark.
In his postgame appearance after his team’s 27-21 win over the Carolina Panthers, Quinn talks Xs and Os, as well as emotions and lessons he hopes can be learned from the tragedy that befell his organization and will forever effect two families.
“It’s an eerie feeling after a win, because you don’t feel like you can win in the situation. You know, I think the one thing hopefully people can try to take away is, I guess, the relationships they have with people,” said Quinn. “I know when it happened I was sitting in my head thinking what I could have done different. When you ask someone how they’re doing, do you really mean it? When you answer someone back how are you doing, are you really telling the truth? We live in a society of social networks, Twitter pages and Facebook, and that’s fine, but we have contact with our work associates, our family, our friends, and it seems like half the time we’re more preoccupied with our phone an other things going on instead of the actual relationships we have in front of us.
"Hopefully people can learn from this and try to actually figure out if someone’s battling something deeper on the inside than what they may be revealing on a day-to-day basis.”
This was not to minimize the horrific acts of Jovan Belcher: He took the life of the mother of his child and then took his own. But Quinn, who also said the team would set up a fund for the daughter Belcher left behind, felt there may be something else to take away from this tragedy.
And maybe that’s something to think about.