Blaine Bishop Reflects on Steve McNair Murder on 4th of July 2009
Updated: Friday, July 4 2014, 07:53 AM CDT
Stream WZTV Fox 17 Newscasts LIVE starting with Fox 17 This Morning at 5am and News at 9pm.
Shock....Who?....Why?...I don't believe it.
Those were the thoughts that filled my mind during a BBQ with friends and family when I received the text message teammate Steve McNair was killed.
I played for seven years with Steve. He was as tough as any fullback in the league. He was country-strong. There were times he would run the ball out of the backfield and blast through defenders like they were straw dolls. He'd get pummeled on a sack and pop up with a smile giving kudos to the defender for a nice shot. I remember him playing through a bruised sternum and just begging the defense to hold down the offense, that he would shake it off and come through when it mattered most. He did.
ALSO READ: NFL and Pain Killers
During my ten years in the NFL I've never played with anyone as physically and mentally tough as Steve McNair. That toughness trickled down to everyone on the team. He was a team captain and when Steve said we could do something, we believed him. He had proved it so many times before.
He had that clutch gene, no matter how tough the situation, no matter what the score, we believed if we could get the ball back in his hands we had a chance.
He wasn't just a leader, he was a confidence builder. He had this even-keeled demeanor about him that let you know he was in control at all times. He was also the nicest and one of the most caring people off the field. He would bump into a stranger after a game while we were having dinner would be asked to come talk to the team or at a camp. To their surprise, he would actually show up out of the blue.
Five years later, I'm still trying to wrap my head around what happened. His life was taken literally across the street from my radio station's old studios. It's hard to believe someone with his calming spirit could have been taken from this world in such a violent manner. It's hard to believe a man who filled his team and this city with so much belief and was at the helm during the Music City Miracle is here no more.
4th of July is a time to celebrate our independence, but for those of us who knew him and those that loved watching him, it's also a day of rememberance. A day when the music stopped.
--READ all of Blaine Bishop's Sports Analysis on SportsBlog: HERE
Follow us on Twitter @wztv_fox17 and LIKE us on Facebook for updates.