Despite the murder-suicide incident committed by Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher in Kansas City on Saturday, a game against Carolina on Sunday went on at Arrowhead Stadium. FOX’s Mike Martz was part of the team on the call for that game and says the situation was difficult, but given how the entire weekend played out, the NFL probably made the right call in playing the game as scheduled.
Mike Martz joined XX Sports Radio in San Diego with Dave and Jeff to discuss what the weekend in Kansas City was like, the game against Carolina being played despite the murder-suicide, how he’s enjoying being a broadcaster and San Francisco’s quarterback situation.
What was the weekend in Kansas City like for you?:
“It just didn’t seem like it was real. It was very difficult. We were in our meeting at 8 o’clock in the morning and the people in the FOX truck, that we had getting ready for our telecast, were asked to leave, that there had been some sort of incident. And that was within minutes of this tragic thing that happened, and they called us, obviously, and we found out what was going on. I can’t even imagine what Coach Crennel had to go through. … It was a very stressful weekend leading up to the game. And I think the game itself was a bit of a relief.”
On the game still being played and whether that’s a decision for the players or someone else:
“I think, to me, that’s more of a league decision, and they’ll discuss that with you. They don’t know, they’re not there, and they’ll try to get a feel for what it’s like and what’s going on. … I think, for the players, it probably is best that they play because it’s something they love to do and it takes the attention off of it for a while. … But who really knows what the right answer is? My first thought was, ‘Well, they’ll probably play it on Tuesday night or Monday night, a double-header.’ … I really don’t know what the best thing to do is. The way it worked out, it worked out very well. Ultimately, I think they probably made the right decision.”
How are you enjoying broadcasting and are you itching to coach again?:
“I’m done coaching; I made that decision here months ago. But I do miss it. I’m always going to love this game and the involvement from the coaching aspect. But I really enjoy broadcasting. It was very difficult at first; I had no idea how complicated and hard [it was]. … The thing I do enjoy about it is it’s a little bit like being on the sideline and dealing with the game.”
On the San Francisco 49ers quarterback situation:
“I was really kind of surprised. Those are very difficult situations. I had Trent Green, of course, and Kurt Warner at the same time. You have to make the decision … you can’t leave that hanging. That doesn’t serve anyone well — the players, the team. You just make a decision and go with it. … You just create a huge nightmare PR-wise and attention-wise. It’s just a distraction to a football team.”