It was supposed to be a homecoming game of sorts for former LSU linebacker Kwon Alexander. It didn’t quite end up being that.
While playing his rookie season for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2015, Alexander was set to return close to his home of Oxford, Ala. when the team traveled to Atlanta to face the Falcons. A large contingent of Alexander’s family was set to attend the game.
Only what transpired during the week of the game prevented many of them from attending.
In the week before that Buccaneers-Falcons game, Alexander received two calls from his mother — one that his 17-year-old brother, nicknamed “Lil’ Brod” had been shot, and another saying he had died.
On Wednesday, just more than a year after the tragic incident, Alexander wrote a piece for the Players’ Tribune detailing the experience and how tough the time was on him in what originally was supposed to be a happy trip to Atlanta.
Alexander was close to not playing that game against the Falcons. His mother didn’t allow that to happen.
“So I decided to get on a plane to Atlanta with the rest of my team, because my mom was right,” Alexander wrote in the piece. “It’s what Lil’ Brod would have wanted. I knew I needed to be strong for him. All he wanted me to do was ball.”
It was a good thing Alexander played. Less than 48 hours after his brother’s death, he had an interception and a fumble recovery in a 23-20 Tampa Bay victory.
This season, Alexander’s second with the Buccaneers, he has compiled 72 tackles and an interception.