Whitlock: Holmes, Peterson need to be honest
Priest Holmes apparently headed home to San Antonio and missed the Chiefs’ exhibition game against Miami on Thursday night.
Inspirational Chiefs leader Priest Holmes boarded a Midwest Airlines, Kansas City-to-San Antonio flight a little more than six hours before kickoff of Thursday’s Dolphins-Chiefs exhibition game, according to multiple sources at KCI.
The man who shocked fans, teammates and coaches by announcing his comeback and his intentions to be a “leader” and “make this team a whole entity” apparently was nowhere near Arrowhead Stadium while his teammates worked.
Thursday evening, Herm Edwards and two members of Kansas City’s media-relations staff stated that Holmes was somewhere inside the stadium.
If so, the once lightning-quick back had a ridiculously busy travel schedule during a 24-hour period. A Midwest Airlines employee and an airport security staffer both told me they witnessed Holmes board a 1:35 p.m. flight headed to San Antonio that was supposed to arrive around 3:40 p.m. Thursday. And a source in Texas confirmed that Holmes spent Friday in the Lone Star State.
Is Holmes skipping an exhibition game a big deal?
Not really. He wasn’t going to play. He probably traveled to Texas to spend time with his kids.
But it speaks to motives. I think we pretty much know Holmes’ motives. He’s been relatively honest about his. He’s looking for another payday, small or big, and he’s taking advantage of Larry Johnson’s holdout to make himself a story across the league.
Despite his claims of a “dream, signs and revelations” and the “sum of all parts being greater than the whole,” Holmes does not care one bit about helping the Chiefs. He’s in this for Priest Holmes.
The question now is: Why are the Chiefs allowing this to take place?
Why let Holmes, someone who hasn’t played football in 22 months, invent his own practice and game schedules? Why have someone in your locker room who doesn’t really want to be there? Why have someone on your roster who puts your head coach in the position of saying this after the game:
“He was here. I think he might’ve been up (in a suite) because he didn’t want to do any interviews.”
That’s not a good look for Herm Edwards, a man who prides himself on keeping his stories straight. Coaches love to preach that playing in the NFL is a privilege, something to be cherished.
Is that Holmes’ approach right now? He’s conducting himself as if he’s doing the Chiefs and their fans a favor. He is in no way living up to the words he spoke the day after he reported to training camp.
“I think the biggest thing you’ll see right now,” Holmes said, “is the encouragement and the things I can give guys — especially the young guys. To come back is something anyone can do as long as they persevere.”
I’m not going to beat up Holmes. Carl Peterson is the man tolerating this dishonest sideshow. He believes Holmes adds some sort of value. Based on the verbal whipping ESPN’s pregame show gave Peterson over his dealings with Larry Johnson, no one in America is buying the notion that Holmes is an option if LJ never shows up.
Or maybe Peterson is holding Holmes hostage in hopes that the enigmatic back will eventually change his mind and commit to an earnest attempt at playing in Kansas City again. Holmes is certainly a weird dude. He thrives on proving his critics wrong.
Whatever their agendas are, I’d just like to see Holmes and Peterson commit to them in a transparent fashion. Don’t insult us with any more games and half-baked declarations about inspiring teammates.
If Holmes is Roger Clemens, free to do his own thing, just tell us. And if Peterson is cool with Holmes doing whateva so that HBO’s cameras and the national media will have another story to cover other than LJ, tell us that, too.
At all cost, let’s avoid another episode of hide-and-Priest on game day.