Chiefs’ BJ Thompson ‘alert, awake’ after seizure

Field Level Media

June 07, 2024 at 7:14 pm.

Kansas City Chiefs defensive end BJ Thompson was awake and “headed in the absolute right direction” Friday afternoon after the player had a seizure and went into cardiac arrest on Thursday, a team official said.

The prognosis is good for the 25-year-old Thompson, who had the seizure at the Chiefs facility during a team meeting. He was taken to the hospital and kept sedated and on a ventilator overnight, said Rick Burkholder, the Chiefs’ vice president of sports medicine and performance.

On Friday, Burkholder told reporters kicker Harrison Butker ran toward the training room to alert staff members at the onset of Thompson’s medical ordeal.

“As a team we tried to stabilize BJ and put him on the floor while he was still seizing. Then he went into cardiac arrest. Our team of that group of people provided CPR for him,” Burkholder said.

“He had one AED (automated external defibrillator) shock and came back. So he was only in cardiac arrest for less than a minute, minute and a half,” Burkholder said.

Paramedics took over and Thompson was taken to The University of Kansas Health System.

“They had it under control,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. “That’s a tough situation. We’ve been through a couple of those during my time — it’s never fun. Thank goodness, if it had to happen, no better place than right here where you have the support that knows what to do.”

The Chiefs sent players home and rescheduled practice for Friday.

Thompson recorded two tackles in one game as a rookie last season. He was selected by Kansas City in the fifth round of the 2023 NFL Draft out of Stephen F. Austin.

His football future is unclear as of now, but Burkholder said Thompson is “coming through quite well.”

“We don’t have a diagnosis and in medicine sometimes you don’t have that,” he said. “He’s headed in the absolute right direction, so all things good in a little bit of a hairy situation.”