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Steve McNair’s murder happened four years ago today

mcnair AP

July 4, 2009.  It was a very slow news day, until the middle of the afternoon.

That’s when reports emerged that former Titans and Ravens quarterback Steve McNair, the 2003 NFL co-MVP with Peyton Manning, had been found dead at the age of 36.

McNair was shot, execution style.  Police concluded that the killer was a 20-year-old girl who had purchased the gun two days earlier from a convicted felon.  She then turned the gun on herself.

It didn’t add up then, and it still doesn’t add up today.

And it doesn’t change the fact that McNair was indeed killed, and that his family has been dealing with the aftermath of his passing for four years now.

McNair became legendary for his ability to play through injuries, and to play well in the process.  He led the Titans to Super Bowl XXXIV, nearly forcing overtime against the Rams with a furious late-game drive that fell inches short of the goal line.

His divorce from the Titans was an ugly one.  Frozen out of the facility in 2006 due to a huge cap number the team didn’t want to carry if McNair suffered a season-ending injury while lifting weights, McNair filed a grievance in order to force the team’s hand.  He won, and the Titans traded him to the Ravens.

McNair started 16 games in 2006, leading the Ravens to the No. 2 seed in the AFC playoffs.  He played one more season with the Ravens.  In 2008, they drafted Joe Flacco.

Regardless of whether McNair ever lands in Canton (and he likely won’t), he deserves to be remembered as one of the great quarterbacks of his time, who provided leadership through toughness and grit and determination.

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62 Responses to “Steve McNair’s murder happened four years ago today”
  1. tfbuckfutter says: Jul 4, 2013 3:52 PM

    Cue the “where was Aaron Hernandez” jokes.

  2. randomcommenter says: Jul 4, 2013 3:54 PM

    McNair is no Hall of Famer. His death may have been a tragedy but I hope it does not inspire a sympathy vote.

    If you put McNair in there then you better also put in mcnabb and even Kerry Collins.

    Before you laugh, Collins has more career passing yards than Joe Montana and like McNair, Collins also led a team to the Super Bowl and lost.

    Should Collins be in the HOF? No, and neither should McNair.

  3. bigbwoy000 says: Jul 4, 2013 3:58 PM

    Mike I couldn’t agree more. Although he never got his ring, very few QB’s were as tough as Steve McNair. He proved he was a big game QB in the SB with that last second comeback that was sooo close. This guy was a very special player & a really good person. RIP Steve

  4. green41563 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:02 PM

    “Regardless of whether McNair ever lands in Canton (and he likely won’t), he deserves to be remembered as one of the great quarterbacks of his time . . . .”
    ___________________________________
    It’s important not to let the circumstances of a player’s death artificially enhance the perception of his career.

    McNair was a good quarterback, not a great one. Grit? Yes. Guts? Yes. All of that. But never had even a single season of 3,500 yards passing. Forget 4,000. He never even hit 3,500. Never had 25 touchdown passes in a season. Only two seasons of more than 500 yards rushing.

    “Great” is a big word. McNair was not great. Nor was he very close to it.

  5. louhudson23 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:09 PM

    I had the opportunity to meet with Steve McNair on several occasions,as well as his mother on several separate occasions. Whatever his failings and whatever the circumstances of his death,Steve McNair was always gracious,friendly and humble to all of our staff…..his Mom was always a very sweet lady to everyone as well. He is missed in his community,and most assuredly in his family…..

  6. ctiggs says: Jul 4, 2013 4:11 PM

    I remember checking in to my hotel room in Chicago that day, sitting on the bed, turning the tv on and seeing the breaking news. It was indeed a sad day, but i feel worse for his family(wife) who will never have answers. RIP Air Mcnair

  7. jojopuppyfish says: Jul 4, 2013 4:14 PM

    He is remembered as an above average qb who paid the ultimate price for cheating on his wife.

  8. theravenlives2 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:16 PM

    R.I.P. Steve. Thanks for the memories.

  9. kd75 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:17 PM

    Ain’t that a B.

    Reminds me of Rodney Dangerfield with his head stuffed in the fish tank in Natural Born Killers.

    RIP Steve. Women will do that to ya.

  10. ryann252013 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:17 PM

    RIP McNair, not a Titans fan but I loved watching this guy. What a shame, really he brought a lot to the Oilers/Titans.

  11. Stiller43 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:17 PM

    “McNair was shot, execution style. Police concluded that the killer was a 20-year-old girl who had purchased the gun two days earlier from a convicted felon. She then turned the gun on herself.”

    You failed to mention he was having a long affair with that 20 yr old. He had a wife and 4 kids.

  12. vikinganswer says: Jul 4, 2013 4:33 PM

    And apparently an adulterer but there is no sense condemning on earth for a bad choice as that is someone else’s decision in a different place. RIP Air McNair

  13. titansbro says: Jul 4, 2013 4:42 PM

    Should be in the hall imo, & certainly needs to have his # retired by the Titans. Can’t imagine another Titans #9.

  14. thebrownswillalwaysloose says: Jul 4, 2013 4:43 PM

    RIP, Steve McNair. You were a Warrior!

  15. phillyphan975 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:45 PM

    Lets question Aaron…

  16. FoozieGrooler says: Jul 4, 2013 4:48 PM

    Do they still celebrate Halloween in Cincinnati with the “Dead Steve McNair” display?
    ..classy town.

  17. jesse716 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:50 PM

    Air McNair

  18. cocheese000 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:53 PM

    I remember playing a drinking game the day he died. Every time someone drank I made the rule that you had to put your hands on your head like wings like he used to do. Time flies.

  19. hpeters77 says: Jul 4, 2013 4:58 PM

    I was just talking about McNair yesterday, rip and best wishes to family

  20. leoskoolaid says: Jul 4, 2013 4:58 PM

    Steve Mcnair greatness

  21. thesteelers says: Jul 4, 2013 4:58 PM

    LOL Go Steelers!

  22. thesteelers says: Jul 4, 2013 4:59 PM

    Go Steelers!

  23. vuudu says: Jul 4, 2013 5:00 PM

    How old was Aaron Hernandez then?

  24. ecupatsfan12 says: Jul 4, 2013 5:03 PM

    RIP Air McNair.

  25. stlunatik says: Jul 4, 2013 5:22 PM

    RIP Steve. it was a pleasure watching you

  26. thesteelers says: Jul 4, 2013 5:33 PM

    Here we go Steelers, here we go!

  27. snarcasms says: Jul 4, 2013 5:46 PM

    RIP Steve, but you didn’t deserve to share that MVP.

  28. tooz72 says: Jul 4, 2013 5:59 PM

    cheat on your wife and these things can happen

  29. 87hollywoodhorn says: Jul 4, 2013 6:13 PM

    I don’t think McNair is a hall of famer, but do I think people are selling him a little short here. He was a top ten sometimes top five quarterback for most of his career. His teams did nothing but win.
    If you ran a ground and pound one back offense you couldnt ask for a better guy. Just cuz he didnt hang the kind of numbers as today’s elites does not mean he was any less effective at the position.

  30. m3dman3 says: Jul 4, 2013 6:22 PM

    RIP, coming from a Bills fan. He was a great player and much respect given to him and his family from western New York.

  31. green41563 says: Jul 4, 2013 6:25 PM

    87hollywoodhorn says:
    Jul 4, 2013 6:13 PM
    “I don’t think McNair is a hall of famer, but do I think people are selling him a little short here. He was a top ten sometimes top five quarterback for most of his career.”
    _________________________________

    Just not true. He had a three-year stretch from 2001 to 2003 when he was pretty good. Aside from that, meh.

  32. sportsmeccabi says: Jul 4, 2013 6:38 PM

    Has it been 4 years?
    Time flies.

  33. hedleykow says: Jul 4, 2013 6:48 PM

    cocheese000 says:
    Jul 4, 2013 4:53 PM
    I remember playing a drinking game the day he died. Every time someone drank I made the rule that you had to put your hands on your head like wings like he used to do. Time flies.
    ————————————————————

    That’s the most creative tribute to anyone that I have ever heard of. You should have put it on YouTube.

  34. preston0036 says: Jul 4, 2013 6:53 PM

    Steve McNair is Hands above Kerry Collins dont Disrespect the Game!!!! Tough as Nails and was a Great QB!! I like to Call Ben Roethlisberger THE WHITE STEVE MCNAIR!!!! SAME STYLE AND TOUGHNESS! !!!

  35. bobnelsonjr says: Jul 4, 2013 7:12 PM

    Steve McNair missed games. He was hurt often.

    Only 4 of his 13 seasons did he start all 16 games. He was no Brett Favre.

  36. northstarnic says: Jul 4, 2013 7:13 PM

    NFL…. (smh)

  37. emoney12 says: Jul 4, 2013 7:16 PM

    Hard to feel bad for a guy killed by his girlfriend while cheating on his wife.

  38. divan22 says: Jul 4, 2013 7:16 PM

    ^The Roethlisberger comparison is actually pretty good. Never thought of that before.

  39. lingsun54 says: Jul 4, 2013 7:21 PM

    I’ll always remember Steve McNair as a man who cheated on his wife, had a mistress, and died without a will. He left his family in chaos. Ultimately, he wasn’t much of a man.

  40. smoooth510 says: Jul 4, 2013 7:24 PM

    cocheese000 says:
    Jul 4, 2013 4:53 PM
    I remember playing a drinking game the day he died. Every time someone drank I made the rule that you had to put your hands on your head like wings like he used to do. Time flies.
    ————————————————————

    Nice, game…he did that salute for his fraternity the Omegas (same sign Shaq does as well). But damn how time flies.

  41. jetsjetsjetsnow says: Jul 4, 2013 7:32 PM

    One of my favorites of all time. He was one tough exciting dude to watch. An example of how football should be played. Thanks for the memories!

  42. 87hollywoodhorn says: Jul 4, 2013 7:41 PM

    ^Steve McNair was QDog?!?!

  43. orivar says: Jul 4, 2013 8:10 PM

    It’s already been four years?

    Wow!

  44. blutri10 says: Jul 4, 2013 8:18 PM

    Amazing quarterback. Thanks for the memories Air McNair….

  45. matt24bucs says: Jul 4, 2013 8:55 PM

    Tragic, but when one behaves in a fashion that creates “chaos”,, chaos happens. And no, he is nowhere close to being in the Hall of Fame.

  46. stairwayto7 says: Jul 4, 2013 8:57 PM

    He was cheating on his wife and sleeping with a head case! His on field play was above average people! He could not throw ball 10 yards in Super Bowl giving his team the tying score!

  47. ghostryder76 says: Jul 4, 2013 9:17 PM

    I like how this topic turned more into bashing than talking about how Steve was during game time and what he did for the communities of his surrounding teams. Lets say he was an average qb. Have you forgotten how many missed practices he missed due to injuries yet he showed up and constantly gave his best effort for his team? Did you forget the charities he either conducted directly or indirectly? Are any of you saying you do not have personal issues that you want the world to know? Cheating is bad either way. Did it mean he had to die for it? We all have our problems. I remember that day. I couldn’t believe it. Not only was he a great guy but being a die-hard Titans fan, he always gave us hope. No matter if he was injured or not. He made the players around him better and he showed others that if he can work through injuries…they could too. Does he deserve Hall votes? Maybe, maybe not. If you are looking for stats, I suggest you look through the stats of personnel voted into the Hall. Many nowadays would be laughed at. However, it is hard-pressed to deny what he meant to the Titans organization and the people whose lives he touched.

  48. bobzilla1001 says: Jul 4, 2013 9:22 PM

    I remember when the Ravens signed McNair. That prompted Ray Lewis to say, “Look out, ’72 Dolphins.”
    Oops.
    Regardless, McNair, either with the Titans or with the Ravens, always scared me as a Steelers fan. He was dangerous, elusive, cunning and smart.
    Seemed like he always found a way around and through those “great” Steelers defenses that I keep hearing and reading about that were asked to support Kordell Stewart.

  49. gbp4ever says: Jul 4, 2013 9:26 PM

    Why he was a very good player he was a moron. He made the choice not only to cheat on his wife he made the choice to cheat on the women he was cheating with in the first place and because she was nuts she killed him.

    He will be remembered as an above average player but will be more famous for being killed by the women he was cheating with and on then anything he ever did on the field.

  50. lightofkolob says: Jul 4, 2013 11:27 PM

    used to watch Titans games just to see Steve play…..RIP Steve

  51. asmoore22 says: Jul 5, 2013 12:19 AM

    It really makes me sick that people always want to bring up negative things about Steve Mcnair. Every one should stop and ask themselves, I have ever done anything wrong. I bet you have, and I bet it wasn’t plastered all over the tv either. So leave all of your negative thoughts at the door. Steve Mcnair was a really great football player and he really seems like he was a nice person. Life is always different in someone elses shoes. Be careful how you put others down. I still think about him all the time, aad his family. I hope all situations are better for his whole family.

  52. badintent says: Jul 5, 2013 12:50 AM

    Sorry the hoe shot him but that’s what you get when you deal with Berka heads. Stick to the sexy sisters !

  53. jcd213 says: Jul 5, 2013 1:05 AM

    excellent quarterback, always fun to watch!

  54. txraiderfan says: Jul 5, 2013 1:13 AM

    One of the most overrated QB’s in history

  55. jonnyeubank says: Jul 5, 2013 2:18 AM

    Mac 9 was a tough dude. Nashville him loved because of that. He’s not a Hall of Fame-er. He was just one of those tough, gritty football players who’s name comes up from time-to-time. On some list…
    … RIP #9…. Nashville won’t forget you.

  56. joetoronto says: Jul 5, 2013 4:34 AM

    Any loser can point to stats and talk, but those of us who actually WATCHED him play would never, ever compare him to Kerry friggin Collins.

    SMH.

  57. Joemontanaflacco says: Jul 5, 2013 5:36 AM

    thesteelers says:
    Jul 4, 2013 4:59 PM
    Go Steelers!

    Inappropriate.

    thesteelers says:
    Jul 4, 2013 5:33 PM
    Here we go, Steelers here we go!

    Immature.

    thesteelers says:
    Jul 4, 2013 4:58 PM
    LOL Go Steelers!

    Sick. Hope you know the word karma.

  58. polamalusboyfriend says: Jul 5, 2013 6:21 AM

    Husband and Father of the year 2009.

  59. Kaz says: Jul 5, 2013 8:03 AM

    “It didn’t add up then, and it still doesn’t add up today”
    ____

    Actually it all adds up. He was cheating on his wife and his mistress killed him. Now the murder was wrong, unfortunate, and all the other horrific words you can think of. But the motive does add up.

  60. strokeytheclown says: Jul 5, 2013 10:42 AM

    Not to trample on a dead mans grave, but McNair was waaaay overrated!

  61. kingstod says: Jul 5, 2013 1:24 PM

    GROUND McNair!
    Not a hall of fame QB or husband.
    KING-out

  62. eatlessveggies says: Jul 13, 2013 12:46 PM

    Just because McNair had an affair does not mean that he deserved to be murdered. Some of you commenting here should be absolutely ashamed of yourselves.

    I enjoyed watching the Titans of old with McNair, George, Wycheck, Matthews, Bullock, and Carter. This new Titans team wouldn’t last two quarters with the old squad.

    I miss ya Steve. RIP.

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