I can’t believe I have to do this AGAIN, but here we are.
KC linebacker Willie Gay was arrested this past Wednesday. Much of the media coverage of this has been misleading, with many headlines emphasizing the charge, which officially is “Criminal Damage of less than $1000.” I’ve even seen some headlines that said something along the lines of, “Willie Gay arrested for breaking a vacuum cleaner.”
If you’re willing to read the articles, or watch the news reports, you might eventually discover that this incident is considered “domestic violence-related,” that the incident took place at the home of his child’s mother, and that Gay damaged a vacuum, a wall, and a door frame.
I did find one report that detailed the victim’s report of the incident. According to the victim, Gay came over to her home after being asked not to, refused to leave, verbally abused her, shoved her, took her phone and hung up on the 911 dispatcher after she had called for help, threw her phone against the wall, and smashed her vacuum, then left before police arrived.
The victim has applied for a protective order, citing this incident, as well as alleging past incidences of physical and verbal abuse and threats.
Gay has a history of violence. In college, he was kicked out of games for it and suspended. He assaulted a teammate, causing serious injury.
Despite the team being aware of all of this, Gay will play today. Not that I’m surprised.
There are a lot of terrible franchises in the NFL. Competition for the worst would be stiff. KC would absolutely be in the running, even if you only considered the past nine years.
In the early hours of December 1, 2012, KC linebacker Jovan Belcher murdered his partner, shooting her with a legally-owned handgun nine times, in the home he shared with her and their infant daughter, in front of his mother. Belcher then drove to KC’s practice facility, where, despite the pleas of GM Scott Pioli, coaches Romeo Crennel and Gary Gibbs, and owner Clark Hunt, Belcher killed himself via a single shot to the head from a different, legally-owned handgun.
Prior to the team’s game the day after the deaths, the team held a moment of silence for “…victims of domestic violence and their families,” though the incidents themselves were never mentioned.
On December 31st, with the trauma no doubt still fresh in his thoughts, Crennel was fired. Pioli was fired five days later, on January 4th of the new year. The team, after all, had gone 2-14.
On that same January 4th day, KC hired Andy Reid. He would be the team’s Head Coach, and he would have a large degree of input regarding personnel matters.
The team became winners during Reid’s tenure.
At what cost?
The team drafted Tyreek Hill in 2016. Hill had been arrested for assaulting his pregnant girlfriend in December of 2014, eventually pleading guilty to choking her. Hill had been kicked off his college team following the charges, was not invited to the NFL Scouting Combine, and was projected to go undrafted, having been removed entirely from some team’s draft boards.
Since joining KC, Hill has become a dynamic player. He’s also been investigated for child abuse, and though a DA concluded that a crime had been committed, there was not enough evidence for charges. During the investigation, a recording of Hill threatening his partner was made public. Hill has not been disciplined by the team or the league.
Prior to the 2019 season, KC acquired Frank Clark via trade. Clark has an extensive criminal history including some reprehensible behaviour towards women. He was suspended during his freshman year in college following a home invasion and theft. In November of 2014, he was arrested for domestic violence and dismissed from the team, eventually pleading guilty to disorderly conduct.
While with Seattle, Clark made disparaging remarks to a female journalist who wrote about his domestic violence arrest.
Since joining KC, Clark has played well enough to be rewarded with a big contract. On June 20th of this year, Clark was arrested for felony weapons possession (an Uzi!), and when this was reported, it was revealed that he had been arrested just three months earlier for the same crime. Despite his history, and these felonies being punishable by up the three years in prison, Clark has not been disciplined by the team or the league.
The team also employed Britt Reid, Andy’s son, for several years as a coach, despite an extensive history of violent crimes and drug convictions. This past February, Britt, who suffers from substance addiction, crashed his truck into two stopped vehicles while speeding. Reid was drunk, and also had the drug Adderall in his system. One of the occupants of the struck vehicles, a five-year-old girl, suffered permanent brain damage. The team did not renew Reid’s contract, and he remains free pending trial.
Their fans are racist, gleefully participating in mass demonstrations of cultural theft and insensitivity, actions encouraged by the team. The team’s very name and logo are examples of cultural appropriation of indigenous iconography.
Sports media ignores all of this, afraid of alienating the players, the team, and the league, at the risk of losing access. I’ve been railing against this stuff for years, to the point that I’m sick and tired of screaming into the void.
Willie Gay should not be playing today. Is he going to have to put her in the hospital before he’s held accountable? Does he have to kill her?
KC is one of the few teams I actively root against.
Actually, now that I think about it, I CAN believe I have to do this again.
Here we are.
Winners in Bold
Los Angeles at Tampa
Both teams have injury problems along their offensive lines, with LA missing Andrew Whitworth, and Tampa without Tristin Wirfs, plus Ryan Jensen’s being hobbled. With both teams having strong pass rushes, this one will likely be decided by which team can run the ball effectively, and which QB handles the pressure better.
Buffalo at KC
Buffalo didn’t just slay the New England dragon; they toyed with it, beat it senseless, choked the life out of it, and BBQed it over a pile of flaming tables. They look like they’re Super Bowl-bound to me.