[Kansas City.com] Injured Chiefs running back Priest Holmes, who has not been seen all season in Kansas City, attended the memorial service on Saturday for Lamar Hunt.
Holmes has missed the entire 2006 season because of a neck and spinal injury suffered midway through last season and made the trip from his home in San Antonio, where he has been rehabbing.
“The one thing about not playing is you get a chance to realize some of the things you sacrifice being an NFL player, and that is being there for important family engagements such as this,” Holmes said.
“The reason I’m here is to be here and bring my support to the Hunt family. They’ve meant a lot. After I left Baltimore (in 2001), the Hunt family, along with Dick Vermeil, were the only franchise that truly believed in me and felt there was something special in me that had not been seen.”
Holmes, signed by the Chiefs as an unrestricted free agent in 2001, blossomed into the franchise’s all-time leading rusher and leader in career touchdowns and was selected to three Pro Bowls.
However, Holmes, the NFL’s leading rusher in 2001, has finished three of the previous four seasons on injured reserve and spent this season on the physically unable to perform list because of the injury sustained last Oct. 30.
“Having this extended time off is giving me an opportunity for any swelling or fluid levels to become very stable, so I think I’m in great shape,” Holmes said.
“What was needed was some time off. Having an entire 12 months without contact has put me in position to be able to make a decision in ’07 whether I should return.”
“There’s a lot of things about football I like. When I see anyone making big plays, like Dante Hall – L.J. (Larry Johnson) – Trent Green – that makes me get that hunger to get back out there and make big plays.”
Holmes said there is no rush on his part to make a decision.
“Not with L.J. going so good, there’s no rush,” Holmes said.