Willie Roaf has announced he will hold a press-conference Thursday, September 14 at a downtown Kansas City law firm.
Eleven-time pro bowler, Willie Roaf, will finally show his face in Kansas City since deciding to retire in late July. Willie had refused to return phone calls from teammates, friends or Chiefs' officials; resigning to all correspondence through his agent. Big Willie hasn't even filed his official retirement papers with the NFL.
Earlier this spring, it is reported that Willie Roaf assured new head coach Herm Edwards that he would be back for his 15th season. Willie even went so far as to talk Chiefs lineman Will Shields into coming back for this season. Yet, the week leading up to training camp, Roaf's agent contacted Chiefs' President/CEO/GM Carl Peterson to inform him of Roaf's decision.
Teammates continuously called, text-messaged and left voicemails for Roaf - none-of-which were answered, but rather Roaf changed his phone number and moved out-of-town. Roaf then granted an interview to ESPN's Cold PIzza. Roaf insisted that he wouldn't return to the Chiefs this season because he, "did not want to let his teammates down."
If you didn't want to let your teammates down, give them the respect and courtousy of returning a phone call. Or, at least talk to the guy whom you talked into coming back for another season when he was the one who wanted to retire four MONTHS before the season started.
Roaf will now hold a press conference at a downtown Kansas City law firm, something that would normally be held at One Arrowhead Drive (Arrowhead Stadium). His reasoning for this press conference is to "clear the air" surrounding his retirement decision, and to "set things straight" due to the fans, media and teammates believing he simply ran and hid.
Willie, when you (actually your agent) informs team officials the week before training camp of your retirement, you don't return phone calls from long-time teammates and friends, you change your phone numbers, you move ... it's kind of viewed as if your were running and hiding. If things were so on the up and up, why not have the presser at Arrowhead? Why not talk to Will Shields? Why not talk to Trent Green? (more on Trent later)
Now, if anyone in the league deserves the right to walk away from the game, it's Willie Roaf. Willie has been to the Pro Bowl eleven times in his career. He has been the best at his position nearly his entire career, and is sure to be a first-ballot Hall of Famer.
But, Willie, if there's not something else shady going on, talk to your teammates. Or, hey, Roaf's agent, this has been a complete PR nightmare. Advise your client on how to do things.
Now for Trent Green. Green took a vicious hit this weekend as he was attempting to slide and give himself up, which led to Green being uncocious on the field for 10 minutes before being taken to a local hospital for two nights. Controversy of unsportsmanlike conduct, penalties, etc aside, my belief is that Trent Green would not have been in that position had Willie Roaf been there.
With Roaf gone, the Chiefs now have a starting left tackle who has been out of the NFL for two years due to injury and medical conditions. The Chiefs have platooning right tackles who are young an inexperienced. These factors led to Green scrambling more than usual on Sunday due to break-downs in protection. This fan now thinks Willie Roaf sees the correlation as well, and feels guilty for indirectly causing Green to spend two nights in a hospital, and that's why he is suddenly back in Kansas City ... but why at a law firm, Willie?