Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill plans on becoming a better person and learning from the lessons he said he gained during a tumultuous offseason.
Speaking for the first time Sunday morning since the NFL announced he would not be suspended, Hill vaguely discussed the domestic and child abuse allegations against him and thanked the Chiefs and the NFL for getting "all the facts."
"I can't wait for my new journey,'' Hill said at Chiefs training camp. "I'm excited. I'm working every day to be a better father, a better person, a better citizen, a better teammate and a better son, too, to my parents. I'm evolving every day. Something stood out to me as I was going through this long process. My mom told me, 'People don't need to change. They need to grow.' ... I want to grow. I don't want to change.''
Hill had been suspended from all team-related activities since April after an audio recording was released in which Hill is heard discussing his three-year-old son's broken arm and how he and Espinal should deal with an investigation into how it happened.
In the 11-minute clip, Espinal is heard asking the two-time All-Pro why their son said, "Daddy did it," in reference to his injured arm. Hill is heard at one point telling Espinal, "You need to be terrified of me, too, b----." The couple lost temporary custody of their son on April 18.
Hill said Sunday that he was unaware the audio existed until it came out. The receiver added that he wanted to "man up" to "what he did on the audio," in respect to his use of explicit language.
"I don't want nobody talking to my little sister, my daughter that I have now, my mom like that. It's very disrespectful," Hill said. "I mean, my mom got onto me, like she thumped me in the ear, like, 'Come on, man, Reek. Come on, grow up, grow up out of it.' So, never again. Like I said I'm growing as a human being, as a person. Never again."
On June 7th, Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe announced that a criminal investigation into the child abuse allegations was no longer active. No charges were filed because he could not prove who injured the child.
The league announced on July 19 that it could not conclude that Hill violated the league's personal conduct policy and therefore he would not be suspended. Hill was allowed to join the Chiefs for the first day of training camp, during which he was welcomed by fans with strong support. A two-time Pro Bowler, Hill earned first-team All-Pro honors in 2018 after recording career highs of 87 receptions, 1,479 yards and 12 touchdowns.
"The love feels good," Hill said. "To come back out here and hear the chants, it's crazy. I'm back. The Cheetah is back."