I spend a lot of time thinking about football — mostly about current Kansas City Chiefs players. But sometimes I catch myself daydreaming about former Chiefs.
Sometimes I think about all-time greats like Jamaal Charles or Neil Smith — but more often than not, I find myself thinking something like, “What are Derrick Alexander and Eric Warfield doing right now?
“Is it something extraordinary like climbing the Andes — or are they doing normal-guy stuff like binge-watching ‘Stranger Things’ and then listening to ‘Master of Puppets’ on repeat for the next week and a half?”
Currently losing my mind over @Metallica duetting with Eddie Munson on Master of Puppets! pic.twitter.com/CKyhaLVRiB— Netflix (@netflix) July 8, 2022
And sometimes when I’m eating pizza, I ask myself, “Is Steve Bono eating pizza right now? Are we somehow cosmically connected through our eating habits on some meta-pepperoni-astral plain?”
I decided to find out.
Quarterback Steve Bono
Bono was never known for his athleticism — which is why it’s awesome that he is best known for a naked bootleg that he ran 76 yards to the house.
It was October 1, 1995. The Chiefs were on the road, playing against the Arizona Cardinals. At the beginning of the second quarter, Kansas City was facing third-and-1 from their own 25-yard-line. Head coach Marty Schottenheimer dialed up a three running back Jumbo look, motioning star fullback Kimble Anders outside of the left tackle as a second tight end, leaving running backs Greg Hill and Marcus Allen in an I-formation.
If you watched the Chiefs in the 1990s, you knew two things: Schottenheimer loved to run the ball — and Allen was a wizard in short-yardage situations. Whenever the Chiefs were within three yards of a first down, it seemed that they would always run the ball up the gut to Allen. He would slither through the line and find a way to fall forward for five yards.
So everyone knew the ball was going to Allen — except that it didn’t. In what might have been Schottenheimer’s all-time greatest play-call, he fooled everyone on the Arizona defense.
Steve Bono played 14 years in the @NFL and ran for just 257 yards.— NFL Throwback (@nflthrowback) November 7, 2018
Maybe that's why not a single Cardinal defender anticipated this QB bootleg, which accounted for over one-quarter of Bono's career rushing yards.
(Oct. 1, 1995) @Chiefs #AZvsKC pic.twitter.com/ZG4Dbqj7LG
This play would account for nearly 30% of Bono’s career rushing yards.
Since retiring from football in 1999, Bono has focused on helping athletes build wealth through smart investments. In 2013, Bono teamed up with New York University and Constellation Wealth Advisors (where he was a principal) to perform a study about athletes with healthy financial portfolios.
“Ninety-nine percent of the time when you read about former athletes, it seems to be negative; the idea for the study came about because we wanted to have something positive,” Bono told Forbes.com. ”We want to be able to look at whether there is a correlation between how much a guy made while he was playing and how successful he is after playing, who does he surround himself with, who he goes to for advice. We are trying to put some measurement on financial success in sport and success financially after sport.”
Bono now works as a wealth manager at First Republic Investment Management, where his employee bio shows an impressive resume.
Mr. Bono worked in the venture services arm of the Investment Banking Division at ThinkEquity Partners. In that role, he focused on marketing to the venture capital community as well as assisting in raising money for both public and private companies. His prior experience includes serving as Vice President in Bank of America’s Private Bank and as a consultant with Champion Ventures, a venture capital fund of funds.
If I ever win the lottery, I know who I’m going to call.
Wide receiver Derrick Alexander
An excellent route runner who possessed great body control and an elite ball-tracking ability, Alexander also had a blue-collar work ethic that gave him the willingness to take a hit and make a contested catch.
That’s my Brotha DA!! Another Baller that I watched torch Defenses, Sunday after Sunday! Heckuva Route runner, Great Hands, Best Over the shoulder Fade route catcher there was and that Toe Drag was a Monster!! Great Dude Cool as they come, The Man 82, Derrick Alexander! https://t.co/O4CV1SXOWf— Jason “The” Dunn (@JasusTD89) June 9, 2022
Alexander led the Chiefs in receiving in two out of the four seasons he played in Kansas City.
Happy Birthday to DERRICK ALEXANDER (@CoachDA82), AKA the Man that has held the @Chiefs' record for Most Receiving Yards In A Season, longer than anyone else in team history -as his 1,391 mark in '00 lasted 18 sea., until Tyreek Hill broke it in '18. Here's to a Great One, DA! pic.twitter.com/5xL1cuXra6— Chiefs Facts (@ChiefsFacts) November 7, 2020
Since retirement after the 2002 season, Alexander has continued to be an active member of Chiefs Kingdom through his philanthropic work as a member of the Chiefs Ambassadors, a select group of former players that support the Kansas City community with scholarship programs and charity work.
Alexander also worked as a systems engineer for Cerner and as an IT analyst for the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. As a person who has worked in the IT industry, I can’t imagine what I would do if I walked into work on a random Tuesday and found him sitting at the desk next to me. I would do my best not to go total fanboy — but I make no promises.
Thankfully, it doesn’t look like my self-control will ever be put to the test. In 2015, Alexander returned to the football field, first as wide receivers coach at Wilmington College, and then as offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach at Avila University from 2016 through 2018.
In 2019, Alexander joined his college teammate Tyrone Wheatley’s coaching staff at Morgan State University as passing game coordinator and wide receivers coach. In May of this year, Alexander joined the staff of Wayne State University’s longtime head coach Paul Winters as wide receivers coach.
Cornerback Eric Warfield
In the eight years that he played for the Chiefs, Warfield tallied 20 interceptions and 78 passes defended. Warfield never had a problem on the football field. He was always talented enough.
But in 2005 — his final year in Kansas City — Warfield was been suspended for the first four games of the season, spent 10 days in jail and 80 days on house arrest for a DUI conviction. It was his third since the Chiefs selected him 216th overall in the seventh round of the 1998 NFL Draft.
Then on February 1, 2009 — three years after his retirement from the NFL — Warfield was pulled over by police in Nebraska. They suspected that he was driving under the influence.
Sitting in his car, Warfield was now facing a fourth DUI arrest. The officer asked Warfield if he could administer a DUI test. Warfield refused — unaware that in Nebraska, you are considered guilty if you decline to take a sobriety test.
Lancaster County district judge Jodi Nelson revoked Warfield’s license for 15 years and sentenced him to a jail term of one to three years. Everything that Warfield had worked for was gone.
But sometimes you have to lose everything in order to see what is important. For some, that cold February night in Nebraska would have been the end of their story — but not for Warfield. While a lot of people wrote him off, he worked his way back.
Once out of jail, he began focusing his time on coaching youth football, helping young players avoid some of the same problems that had derailed his career. Warfield’s story is about redemption: being a young man who made a mountain of mistakes and found a way to get back up again.
Great video from 10-year coach Eric Warfield. PFC is about more than football! Perseverance, adversity, & overcoming obstacles in life will be focal points at #PFC2019. Join us for a GREAT three days. Camp is July 9-11! Register: https://t.co/Wlr7brCEPG #footballcamps #character pic.twitter.com/aw4YTYzD6t— Pro Football Camp (@ProFballCamp) June 13, 2019
These days, Warfield also joins NFL analyst Marcus Dash in co-hosting the “Chiefs Concerns” podcast with former Kansas City teammates Jason Dunn and Chris Bober.
NEW— Chief Concerns (@ConcernsChief) April 29, 2021
Happy #NFLDraft day! Former Chief @BoberAcademy joins @JasusTD89 & @Eawarfield44 to talk Orlando Brown Jr. and the NFL Draft. They share some of their wisdom with the incoming draft class! #ChiefsKingdom
- https://t.co/5jZi8MJIOE pic.twitter.com/tH0JGIDYM4
Which former Chiefs players are you curious about? Please let us know!