Monday, December 3, 2012
Brandon Carr deals with Chiefs tragedy
ARLINGTON, Texas --At the end of the evening, Cowboys cornerback Brandon Carr was trying to get dressed and put his thoughts together.
He played in a NFL game on Sunday night where his team defeated the Philadelphia Eagles, 38-33. Carr was able to use the three and half hours of work as a distraction from the real world.
His former teammate with the Kansas City Chiefs, Jovan Belcher, had killed himself and his girlfriend on Saturday.
"I guess this was my first time dealing with a situation like this and still trying to keep my poise and go out there and put on a show in front of millions of people," said Carr, who played with Belcher for three seasons on the Chiefs. "It's been an exhausting two days."
For Carr it wasn't so much he knew Belcher, he knew the girlfriend too, Kasandra M. Perkins. Belcher was a rookie when he met Carr, who was entering his second year in the league, in 2009. Carr still has friends on the Chiefs team. He reached out to them by phone the last 48 hours offering support and trying to find answers.
According to authorities in Kansas City, Belcher shot his girlfriend multiple times at a residence near Arrowhead Stadium, where the Chiefs play. Belcher then drove to the team's practice facility and turned the gun on himself in front of coach Romeo Crennel and general manager Scott Pioli.
The NFL is such a small fraternity where players don't forget each other. Ever.
"I knew him and Kasandra," Carr said. "That was my family, Kansas city was my family before I got here. I'm still close with a lot of those guys there. The whole situation is just shocking. It's unexpected. Out of the blue. You automatically want to ask why, but all I've been doing is praying and asking God to be there for the families that are affected by this and certain people are affected by the incident."
In the NFL, the game moves on with you or without you regardless of how hurt you are from an emotional standpoint. It's a harsh world we live in, but there are times you must step back and cherish what you have.
Carr was trying to do that on Sunday night after his former teammates did in the afternoon. The Chiefs won their first home game of the season, 27-21, over the Carolina Panthers. It was an emotional game for the Chiefs, who had to deal with losing a young teammate and trying to support the families of those affected. As the Chiefs move forward with their lives, there's a young girl, 3-month-old girl, Zoey, who is left an orphan because of this tragedy.
"We got to focus," Carr said. "We knew it was going to be tough (Sunday). You (just) got to go out there."
Carr was standing near his locker at Cowboys Stadium trying to remember the last time he talked Belcher. He was racking his brain but couldn't remember. He was rambling in a quiet locker room because he was trying to make sense of it all. Maybe you can't make sense of it sometimes.
"It caught everybody off guard," he said. "It's a eye opener. A lot of issues that we deal with."