“This week has been extremely hard on not only myself but Julia’s friends and family, as well,” Nicholson said. “I would appreciate if you all respect my privacy while everything is going on.”
The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office has been investigating the death. A search of Nicholson’s home the day of her death turned up marijuana, pills and foil with residue. The search warrant did not identify the latter drugs or explain who they belonged to or how they got into Nicholson’s home.
Nicholson, 23, was not asked about the drugs. Most of what he addressed in a seven-question news conference at the team’s practice facility in Ashburn involved how he has dealt with the death of Crabbe, who, according to her family, was dating Nicholson.
“It’s been rough, to say the least,” Nicholson said. “But, you know, with my teammates and friends who aren’t in the state or just aren’t around here, the [Redskins’ front office] made it very well known that they have my back in everything that was going on and if I needed anything, just to talk or anything like that, they made that known that the door was wide open.”
Nicholson started and played all of Sunday’s game against the New York Jets, a decision that has drawn criticism given the game was just three days after Crabbe’s death and an investigation was ongoing. He said the team gave him the option of playing or sitting out, and he decided to play even though, he said, “It wasn’t easy at all trying to separate the field from everything that was going on.”
But, he added, the decision over whether to play was not particularly difficult.
“It wasn’t that hard,” Nicholson said. “If I can play, I’m going to play. I love this game. … If I can, I will be going.”
He said he has spoken to a counselor about dealing with the death as well as “the people who are closest to me” but did not offer any details about those conversations.