Romeo Crennel on Monday addressed the tragic moments prior to Jovan Belcher's suicide.
By JEFFREY FLANAGAN FS Kansas City
They gathered for their normal team meetings in the morning, and watched video of their win over Carolina. They broke mid-afternoon to begin planning for next Sunday's visit to Cleveland.
Still, there were signs at every turn that nothing was quite as usual.
Chiefs chairman Clark Hunt routinely sticks around the day after a game, but this time he was there to lend support to an organization in mourning. Chaplains were also at the facility, as were outside counselors brought in to help players and staff come to grips with tragedy.
''It's new territory for everyone,'' tight end Tony Moeaki said. ''We're all trying to figure out how to handle the situation. We're just trying to take it one day at a time, come into meetings; it's nice to be in meetings, watching film. Your mind's not on it as much.''
Linebacker Brandon Siler said he spent Thanksgiving with Belcher and ''it was Thanksgiving as you know it, all laughs and praying and loving.''
''It was hard to walk back in the parking lot, but it was harder to sit in the meetings,'' Siler said. ''He sits right beside me. That was hard. You keep looking at that seat, thinking he was going to show up at some time, you know? That's hard.''
Players were also struggling to reconcile the man they knew with the man who murdered 22-year-old Kasandra M. Perkins, and who left a 3-year-old girl, Zoey, an orphan.
''I try not to do it, really,'' right tackle Eric Winston said. ''I just try to accept the fact who he was pre, and who he was after, and I'm not sure those thoughts can live together, but until the end of the season, that's just going to have to do.''
Yes, there is still a season to be played.
The Chiefs visit the Browns on Sunday and visit Oakland the following week, before returning home to play Indianapolis. Their season finale is Dec. 30 at Denver.
''It's something that there is no textbook on how to handle, and how to feel, and there's a lot of emotions, confusing emotions,'' center Ryan Lilja said. ''But we're going to try to get back to football as best we can, and let guys grieve whatever way they need to, and be respectful of that, but we need to try to be back on football, and it's going to be tough.''