There will be another homecoming this weekend as the Kansas City Chiefs face off against the Green Bay Packers. Chiefs second-year linebacker Leo Chenal grew up just shy of four hours away from Lambeau Field, where he will return this Sunday as the opponent of his childhood team.
“It’s definitely a homecoming game — and we’re all cheese heads,” Chenal confessed to the media on Thursday. “Once you get into the heart of Wisconsin, everybody’s a Packers fan and I definitely grew up a cheese head.”
Chenal lived close to two NFL teams, the Packers and the Minnesota Vikings, in an area he says is split between the two fan bases. He didn’t attend many games at Lambeau growing up but said Packers games still hold a special meaning in his family.
“We kind of treated it as like a family time, where we sit around a big TV, my whole family,” he recalled. “We were always watching the Packers, supporting them.”
Chenal recalled watching many of the Packers’ greats, including current New York Jet Aaron Rodgers. His favorite Packer was running back Eddie Lacy, who spent four seasons with the team.
“I loved watching Eddie Lacey…he’d catch those screenplays and he’d rumble, man, he’d be dragging people,” Chenal remembered. “It was like our own beast mode.”
Facing his childhood team on Sunday night in primetime will be a very special moment for the former Wisconsin Badger. Chenal understands that those back home watching the game might be conflicted in rooting for a Chiefs’ victory, as they were Packers fans first.
“It’s really cool, because (you’ve) got all your friends and family right there with you — some of them still supporting the Packers, which is fine,” he conceded. “I’m not gonna take that from them, it’s gonna be special.”