The Kansas City Chiefs have been in the news for all the wrong reasons this week, as national media has ran away with the story that fans at Arrowhead Stadium cheered when starting quarterback Matt Cassel left the game against the Ravens Sunday with a concussion. Eric Winston quickly came out after the game with heated comments against any fans who were cheering, and the Chiefs have endured a circus of coverage ever since.
Yet since then, Winston has refused to back down from his comments and Chiefs players came out in support of Winston today. When asked about his own take, Ryan Lilja, the team's new center, says he believes WInston was right in what he said.
"I support what he said," said Lilja. "Obviously it wasn't everybody in the crowd, but there were people cheering a guy getting a head injury. It's been talked about every which way possible, and I'm not going to give you anything else other than I support what Eric said. I hope Matt gets healthy. We love and respect our true Chiefs fans."
Even players on the other side of the ball threw in their support for their teammate. Derrick Johnson, the Pro Bowl linebacker from 2011, weighed in on the matter.
"I've been in the league for eight years, so I'm never surprised with what the media does or shows on TV, but it is what it is," said Johnson. "Eric Winston is my teammate, I stand by and we all stand by what he said and it is what it is. I've been here for eight years, I know we've got great fans - everybody wasn't involved in it. We have to get ready for Tampa Bay. It's one of those things where you don't want this to become a distraction. We need to get a win before this bye week comes up."
The team is going to stick together no matter what, so it's not surprising that the Chiefs have a united front. This is a team that appreciates its fans that will also stand against a select group acting inappropriately.