At the end of July 2017, Kansas City Chiefs veteran outside linebacker, Tamba Hali, released a series of tweets on Twitter expressing his frustration toward the Chiefs organization regarding his lack of playing time and respect toward his tenure with the team.
I completely understand his point of view and support his comments. Despite being an 11-year veteran who has dealt with injuries, he absolutely deserves more playing time. Tamba has done nothing but work hard throughout his career, play extremely well (455 career tackles, 89.5 sacks and 32 forced fumbles), stay out of trouble on and off the field, and give his all for the organization and Kansas City.
The answer is yes. Yes, Tamba – you definitely are still needed in KC and always will be throughout the remainder of your career in the NFL. In my eyes, you’re a hero, icon, and very wise/much needed veteran presence for Kansas City as a football team and organization. In order to win in the playoffs and make a super bowl run this coming season, we need your leadership to get us over the final hump to overcome some of the top teams in the AFC – like New England, Pittsburgh and Oakland.
Do I understand Andy Reid commenting that Tamba should not have chosen Twitter as his platform to voice his frustration? Yes, absolutely. Social media can certainly be a dangerous avenue considering how much trouble athletes and other celebrities can get into when putting their thoughts on blast over social media. Ideally, it would have been best for Tamba to confront coach Reid and the Chiefs’ front office, as well as hold a constructive press conference to voice his concerns with the right messaging.
I strongly disagree with recently promoted (and youngest GM in the NFL) Brett Veach summing up Tamba’s recent input as a result of off-season boredom.
“I think Tamba forgot what day training camp started,” said Veach during a press conference after the tweets received mediate attention.
Tamba is not incompetent – he knows when training camp starts. He’s just eager to play and doesn’t want the end of his career to finish out with only 7 snaps in crucial games like the Pittsburgh playoff game – which is ridiculous.
From a fan’s perspective, I don’t believe veterans like Tamba Hali and Derrick Johnson should be overlooked just because of their age and battles with injuries. What if Chiefs former tight end and future hall-of-famer, Tony Gonzalez, finished his career with us instead of Atlanta? Would we have treated him this way? I doubt it. Tamba Hali is one of the best defensive players this franchise has ever had. Furthermore, he’s stuck with us through his entire career – even when we went 2-14 in 2012. That shows a lot.
I also believe that as a true sports fan – and particularly a Kansas City Chiefs fan – it is my duty to remain loyal to the Chiefs, Kansas City and any players who represent the Chiefs. As long as Chiefs players give their all on that field, demonstrate good sportsmanship, live humbly, and stay out of trouble off the field, I have nothing but respect for them no matter if the team wins or loses. To me, that’s what being a true fan is all about. So for Tamba to be frustrated like this, I feel like the least I can do is show my support.
At the end of the day, I’m only a fan with opinions like any other football fan. Pre-season is starting and the Chiefs will make their decisions one way or another. I just hope Tamba Hali gets treated better this season and realizes that from a fan’s point of view, we still appreciate him playing for Kansas City.