The agent of both Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher and head coach Romeo Crennel has opened up to Sports Illustrated’s Peter King about the tragic murder-suicide that rocked the NFL world early Saturday morning and caught everyone by surprise.
Joe Linta, Belcher and Crennel’s agent, was just as shocked as anyone by the tragedy.
“Jovan was a happy, proud father, with pictures of his baby on his Facebook page. This is shocking. Something went crazy wrong, and we’ll probably never know what it is,” Linta said.
“Never until four hours ago did I think Jovan was anything but a model citizen. He came to my youth clinics in the offseason and worked with kids. He was a gracious, unselfish, hard-working, dedicated kid — very, very caring of some of the underprivileged kids who came to the clinics. I saw him in a real positive way.
“I never take on anyone as a client I wouldn’t be proud to take home and spend time with my wife and kids. Jovan was one of those type of people. There’s no word for this other than shocking. That’s all I can think of.”
Linta also represents Crennel, who witnessed Belcher’s suicide in the parking lot at the team’s facility. While he made it clear that he had not yet spoken with Crennel, Linta believes he knows exactly how Crennel will handle the horrible incident.
“With dignity, like everything Romeo does in his life,” said Linta. “Life doesn’t hand you roses all the time. But Romeo is a salt-of-the-earth kind of person who will rely on his faith and his determination to do what he has to do, to do what’s right. He will know what to say to his team, because he always knows what to say.’
It was an awful incident for everyone involved.
The most troubling detail from the story is that Belcher and his 22-year-old girlfriend leave behind a three-month old daughter who will have to spend her very first Christmas — and the rest of her life — without her parents. It’s such an awful story.
Thoughts continue to go out to all of those involved.