Flashing lights, stadiums filled with tens of thousands of people with millions more watching around the world, television cameras, money, fame and the pressures that all come with the group package.
Athletes are constantly surrounded by ample opportunity to live any way they so desire, and with technology the way it is nowadays, they can do it in the privacy of their own minds. This is the speculation surrounding the slain former NFL MVP, Steve McNair.
The side of McNair that the average NFL fan or follower is aware of is his brute strength and toughness as a professional signal caller. In his prime, no one was tougher than Steve McNair.
Seemingly never practicing but always on the field come Sundays, McNair grew a reputation that had him at the top of everyone's All-Iron Man Team.
He had a very successful and accomplishment-filled NFL career, including multiple pro-bowl selections, rushing records, and a Super Bowl appearance in which he came up one yard short of potentially winning.
Whether it was the Titans for the majority of his career, or the Ravens for his final two years in the league, McNair always gave reason for concern to his opponents each and every Sunday.
Aside from his accomplishments on the field, he was also named NFL Man of the Year. He was a father of four, and presumably happily married for 12 years. However, as one dives into the eerie details of his recent homicide, one cannot help but wonder if he led a double-life.
When McNair was found dead next to Sahel Kazemi, a woman who had been rumored to have been having "dating relations" with McNair, it has been reported that the friend who found them dead, long-time pal Wayne Neeley, called Robert Gaddy before calling authorities.
Gaddy, who played with McNair at Alcorn State, then alerted authorities. Why would there be an alert to another in-circle friend prior to contacting authorities if there was not some type of foul-play or secondary plot behind it all?
If it was truly no more than just a homicide, or apparent murder-suicide (as McNair had four gunshot wounds yet Kazemi who only had one and had been found with the gun near her dead body), why wouldn't Neeley have gone through with things in presumable order?
Another side-story of this entire tragedy includes this: Earlier in the week, McNair and Kazemi were pulled over together in Kazemi's 2007 Cadillac Escalade, which was registered to both her and McNair. She was driving under the influence and was not permitted to drive the vehicle away from the scene. McNair was allowed to taxi home.
Not more than three days later, they both were found dead. Yahoo! had reported earlier that Kazemi fancied a Kia prior to her becoming involved with McNair, prior to acquiring the Escalade that was registered in both of their names.
Don Aaron, the Metro Nashville Police P.I.O., was asked at a press conference about the scene. "I'm not going to discuss the scene," said Aaron. "I'm not going to discuss the nature of the scene."
The question posed by the reporter involved the timeline of events following the shootings. Aaron had said that when Neeley arrived on the scene, he walked into the kitchen passing McNair and Kazemi in the living room area.
The reporter at the conference had asked how would Neeley not have seen blood all over the place immediately if there was four gunshot wounds to McNair and one immediately to the head of Kazemi. Aaron stood his ground not discussing the scene in detail.
One would like to think that within a man as accomplished as Steve McNair has been, both personally and professionally, such two-facedness and two-sidedness wouldn't have room for existence.
However, despite all that athletes are up against in the lime light, no matter how strong the apparent quality of the character of the individual, eventually karma will catch up and the truth will glare its ugly face.