It sounded like a bad version of "Snapped". I take that back...not a bad version of one...just a bad dream of "Snapped". Because this time the victim wasn't some average joe schmoe off the street. It was a pro bowl NFL quarterback who had been one of my favorites when he played and now he's gone.
Steve McNair, former quarterback for the 2000 AFC Champion Tennessee Titans, was found dead in a Nashville, TN condominium. He had been shot multiple times, including once in the head. He was 36-years-old.
The latest news was that Steve's body was found seated on a sofa in a place that belonged to some chick named Sahel Kazemi. Her body was found next to his with one gunshot wound to the head and the pistol next to her body. The police aren't releasing an official statement yet, but it sounds like it may have been a murder suicide. We'll get more into that later though.
I can still remember when McNair was a senior at Alcorn State (an HBCU) and there was a huge buzz about him being one of the greatest college quarterbacks out there. He was already projected to high in the draft, but during the playoffs in his final senior season, he was playing on a bum leg. There was talk that it may hold him back in the pros. He adapted by playing in the shotgun formation to allow less time for defenses to get to him and was picking folks apart right and left. It also didn't appear to hurt his draft status any either because he still got picked third by the then Houston Oilers.
McNair going to the Oilers was significant for a couple of reasons. He became one of then only a few Black quarterbacks in the NFL. More importantly, he was stepping into the role on the same team that another former great Black quarterback once helmed: the one and only Warren Moon. As phenomenal as McNair was, his biggest accomplishments came in 2000 when he led the Titans to their first (and so far only) Super Bowl appearance.
Super Bowl XXXIV remains one of my favorite Super Bowls. Yes, Kurt Warner was holding it down for Iowa as the quarterback for the St. Louis Rams and that was all fine and good. My team was the Titans because of McNair. It was also the last Super Bowl party I ever had and probably the best one. We all watched in dismay as the Titans came up a yard short on the last play of the game.
As for McNair's more recent tragedy, the events surrounding it are a bit disturbing. That's a terrible way to die for anybody regardless of the circumstances. Exactly what those circumstances were are what I'm still interested in hearing. We know he was married and yet he frequented this gal's place. She even owned a car that was titled to both him and her. So was it another femme fatale case of a woman scorned? Was he on the outs with the missus and was telling ol' girl that he was going to try to make it work afterall?
We may never know the full story of how and why everything went down. What we do know is one of the NFL's biggest talents is no longer with us. Rest in peace, Steve.