Ex-teammate doubts McKinley killed himself
Johnson, a second-year backup who spent time with McKinley on the Broncos' practice squad last season, outlined a murky conspiracy theory Wednesday when asked about McKinley's death.
"Something fishy went down there," Johnson said without providing any details. "I don't think it happened the way they're saying it happened. Somebody did something to him."
Johnson told The Post he thinks McKinley might have been murdered because of what he described as a dangerous climate for pro athletes in Denver, especially high-profile Broncos.
There have been several incidents of violence committed against Denver athletes in recent years, notably the drive-by murder of Broncos cornerback Darrent Williams in January 2007.
"In Denver, with [athletes] that are out having fun in the same places as normal people and some convicts, it's going to be an issue because we have the financial backing to have a good time -- buy some bottles [of alcohol] and stuff like that," Johnson said.
"Then there's going to be others come in there and see the women gravitate to that. So they're going to try to match you. . . . That can lead to [violence]."
Johnson also said McKinley would not have killed himself with his 2-year-old son nearby.
"He lived for his son," Johnson said.
Police in Arapahoe County, Colo., said McKinley died of a gunshot wound to the head Monday night and that a preliminary investigation "suggests the wound to be self-inflicted.".
Officials there added that McKinley, a wide receiver, had been depressed after undergoing season-ending knee surgery last month.