Thursday, October 23, 2008

Thank God Huard's Done

This is what we've been waiting for. This is the 16 week preseason I talked about. It is something that needs to happen for this organization to grow. It is needed to answer pressing questions, and so far this season Damon Huard has stood in the way. The insatiable desire to win now has prevented this preseason unit from really reaching its potential. The Chiefs are a young, inexeperienced subpar team. But with Huard at the helm -which is what we had with the Brodie Croyle experiment officially done- this team would remain subpar with no growth or development.

Now Thigpen's the man. Now he can go out, take his lumps and maybe become the QB of the future. "But we'll get embarrassed!" sayz Joe the Chiefs fan. Well, in case you've been living underneath a rock -and many of us wish we had- you might've noticed that we are passed the stage of embarrasment, and all but a handful have reached subtle apathy. We are down, just kick me and go away, Sunday. But with Thigpen (man, I wish his name were Pigpen) we might have the quaterback of the future, even if it is a 1% chance. It will finally be a complete unit developing together. With Huard, there's a 0% chance. Sure he gave us the best chance to win now, but why? To get a lower draft pick? All he did was kept our offense unit in a vacume waiting to gel. Now there's no waiting. Thigpen's the man. And we can get down to finishing this very expensive preseason.....

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Enjoy the 16 game Preseason

Last Sunday Chiefs fans –if there are any left by the looks of the home opener. For shame! But that’s another column- were treated to what one might confuse as a hundred monkeys in a hundred football uniforms. It was hard to understand exactly what was going on. Why did Damon Huard get pulled? Injury to his head? Shoulders? Knees? Toes? Knees? Toes? Or wha-happened to LJ after the third quarter? Or who was that short black dude under center at seemingly random intervals?
We are being laid witness to the mysticism of the Great Herm Edwards Experiment. He did not have an opportunity to do this with the Jets because Purcells left behind a solid foundation, but it is what he feels is his destiny; to build a team from the ground up. Not simply developing a quarterback, or revitalizing a defense, or finding a kicker, or rebuilding the o-line. No, this is doing it all; blowing up the whole goddamn thing and starting over. It doesn’t matter if it works or doesn't work, everything is treated equal in Herm’s eyes: out with the old, in with the young.
Fair enough, but among the many drawbacks, one GLARING is that you don’t know what works…so you try different things, which results in the Pop Warner marathon we witnessed on Sunday. You run what’s-his-name and you line up whozits under center. You make a walk-on the captain of the defense. You take your career long left tackle, make him the right tackle, draft a guard and put him at left tackle. You set your QB depth chart with two characters destined for practice squads with other teams.
Well, I for one am not going to fight the wackiness any more, but embrace it. I will back Herm’s choice to start Thigpen until Brodie returns, then start him again when Brodie gets hurt three plays later. I am going to support Herm’s decision to systematically pull any player over the ripe age of 26 to infuse his college squad. It is clear now we are not playing for 2008. This is a 19 game preseason for the Chiefs and, like when the Chiefs pummled the Rams’ third team, they are rearin to lose ugly.
Alright, I can handle playing for the future. It sure beats the hell out of playing for this present team. But if that’s the case the Chiefs organization needs to pull the trigger on a few things.
1) Trade Larry Johnson. The team is overflowing with Herm Edwards runningbacks. He can’t cut or pass block or stop whinning about not seeing himself in the Chiefs’ future, so let’s fullfill the prophecey. Certainly there is another blockbuster, Jarred Allen-esk trade out there that will allow the Chiefs to once again load their draft stock. At least one, if not two, first round picks. Draft picks and identifying talent are where Edwards thrives –not coaching. The Chiefs need to exploit his talent by getting him more draft picks, and Larry is the way to do it.
2) FULLY commit. Edwards was saying some garbage today about starting Huard if Thigpen doesn’t work out. I don’t want to hear that. Edwards needs to quit toying with his own plan and see it through. Doesn’t work out? Of course it’s not going to work out! He was bound for the practice squad! But you make your bed, baby, you sleep in it. If Edwards is going to grace us with this sick experiment, he better stick with it an let the kid develop into something…or nothin’.
3) Make a deal with the fans. We aren’t stupid. We see that the season has already been thrown away by Herm and his staff. We know this is just one long tryout period. So why not show us fans a little love? Make tickets for the rest of the year $5.00. This will not only begin a much needed relationship tune up between the fans and the front office, it will fill the seats and give Arrowhead –or soon the Stadium Formally Known As Arrowhead- back its home field swagger. From what I heard, openning day at The K beat last Sunday in attendance. That is really really sad. A home openner against the hated Raiders, and it looked like a Tampa baseball game. This needs to be fixed and it begins with the Chiefs front office not charging one over prime for a substandard project.

This is a period where we as Chiefs fans need to circle the wagons. Our football team stinks because of youth, not lack of talent. No experience has a big impact. This team will need another season to develop. Once this talent pool does begin to build on their field experience, look out; this might just be crazy enough to work. I am willing to give up on this season, but not this team. As long as Edwards fully commits to his plan, I am going to hop on board for no other reason than what choice do I have? Edwards is our captain. To the football gods be damned.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Realistically Grading the Chiefs' Draft

No doubt you've heard and read every pundit's grade for whichever team's performance in the draft. And no doubt Chiefs nation has been drinking that Kool-Aid, living up on what all the heads have been gushing over pertaining to the 2008 Chiefs draft; something similar to a stranger gushing over how cool your wife is -you eat up every word. But is it something -the Chiefs, not our wives-we can really hang our hats on? We've been here before, people. Two of the most loathed names in Chiefs history came from these positions. Names so hated, that we won't even utter them here on this beloved Chiefs blog....let's just call them Syan Rims and Jazelle Trinkins.
So, the point is that it is borderline redick to eat up anything anyone even remotely hints at when regarding how well a team did in that year's draft. They say -and I do not know who "they" is- that the best litmus for a team's draft is three years, so instead of carrying on in inane ways about how we scored w/ Dorsey and a second first rounder and 20,000 other draft picks in 2008 I am going to take a realist's view of how the Chiefs did in the 2005 draft:
Readers' note: I break down the draft from lowest to highest for dramatics

James Killian -QB 7th Round Pick
Killian was the Chiefs' first attempt at Brodie Croyle. The team did have the luxery of keeping him on the practice squad because Trent Green was still lighting up scoreboards, and even gave him some time in Hamburg before NFL Europe went under. Perhaps it was the liquidation of NFL-Eu, but the Chiefs didn't retain him. He has since bounced around w/ a couple of teams and is currently looking for a yob.

Jeremey Parquet -OT 7th Round Pick
Parquet is another NFL-Eu casualtie. He, like Killian, earned a free ticket to Hamburg and was actually All NFL-Eu for the Champion Sea Devils, which translated to squat in the states, like most things from Europe. He never saw a down with the Chiefs and is now signed on with Pittsburg.

Khari Long -LB 6th Round Pick
Hung around for a year. Has bounced around several teams before currently landing on Dallas' practice squad.

Will Svitek -OT>6th Round Pick
Will is the lowest of the drafts whom have been able to retain a roster spot with the Chiefs. He is, however, on the edge of the bubble, and his prospects do not look good given the influx of linemen the Chiefs have injected into their 80 man roster. He did tear it up in NFL-Eu., which also has not added up to much. The jury's still out on Svitek, but this year they will be calling in the verdict.

Alphonso Hodge -DBem>5th Round Pick
Alphonso -almost as fun to say as Crophonso- made a name for himself by getting robbed at a Wafflehouse and being deprived of some $300,000 in cash and jewelry. He currently has been enjoying his days in the AFL and has just recently been drafted by the AAFL (All American Football League -it exists, I promise). I bet you Hodge is wishing he had that 300 grande right about now.

Boomer Grigsby -LB 5th Round Pick
Grigsby might have been our most successful late round pick in the 2005 draft because he gave our city a sweet radio show. Unfortunately, none of that resulted into success on the field, and though his wacky antics provided some comic relief from our then joke of a defense, no one could ever figure out what position the guy played. So after finally settling on fullback because the Chiefs needed one and he was available, they promptly cut him, once again, leaving the Chiefs with no fullback.

Late Round Midterm Grade: F
I've seen burning dog poop that has had more value than this group. Extra points are deducted due to the number of picks in each round -two each. The time a Chief fan wasted watching this late round of the draft will never be given back.

Crophonso "Don't call me Alphonso" Thorpe -WR 4th Round Pick
C-Thorpe continued a long-standing tradition for the Chiefs of absolutely tanking on wide reciever picks. Everybody and their mothers had to have seen this grease fire coming when Mr. Thorpe's prestigious fourth round position dictated we sit training camp until he got a primo contract. After robbing the team, he promtly was cut at the end of the year where he spent the next three holding out for several other teams before signing on to their practice squad. His most recent holdout was with Jacksonville at the end of May for $370,000. He was released June 16th. Not a bad gig this kid has.

Dustin Colquitt -K 3rd Round Pick
The Chiefs really nailed this one. They needed a punter, and what a better place to take them then in the 3rd round. And why not? Jerome Mathis and Brandon Jacobs will be around later, won't they? No, in all seriousness, Colquitt is without doubt the most feared kicker whose punts shed an aura of excitement amongst the fans everytime his foot connects with the ball. Most importantly, he set himself up as the posterchild for the Chiefs' future offensive struggles, which is key. Finally, he does a sweet radio show w/ Boomer....those guys just feed off eachother.

Derrick Johnson 1st Round Pick
As Colquitt was the pillar cornerstone for our deteriorating offense, Derrick Johnson came in as the foundation for a future defense revitalized. True, he has not made it to the Pro Bowl, though much of it accounts for the team's overall struggles. There is no doubt D.J. will come into his own and power up a soon to be formidible defense. Derrick gets bonus points as well for setting up perhaps the most exciting first round draft I have ever experienced -this most recent draft comes a close second. His falling to the 15 spot was absolutely unexpected and a gift from the football gods. Carolina's need for a linebacker made it that much more intense.

Early Round Midterm Grade: A
Points were originaly deducted for only having two picks in the early rounds, but then it occured to me the Chiefs acquired Patrick Surtain for the pick, whom I have nothing against. He seems to know the coaches names and gives 110 on the field, so kudos to him. Though if a team is to build from the draft, he is the antithesis, as it would be surprising to see him in a Chiefs uniform next year.
Surtain is a perfect segue into highlighting Dick Vermiel's final draft class, which served as a primo piece of evidence for anyone who wants to argue -present company included- that Vermeil SU-HUCKED at the draft. He didn't care about anyone after the first round. They were all going to be fired anyway, so he just ran through them like wet-ones. To compare, Herm's draft the next year, which had one less pick, yet only one player -Marcus Maxey- is currently not seeing regular playing time. That is building a team through the draft.
So chalk 2005 as the true transition year; the beginning of the end for the Chiefs as we knew them. It was the final attempt at salvaging any smooth transition from the ever-aging players. And in that sense the Chiefs flat failed in 2005. The magnitude and future contributions of Colquitt and Johnson (though the loss of Boomer makes Colquitt considerably less funny on the radio) deserves some merit. But for an overall draft perspective, this was not near a complete win. Final Grade: D+

Monday, April 21, 2008

Fuzzy Math

What about this trade makes sense? This has got to be either the biggest smoke screen in the NFL's history -judging this is the most national Chiefs coverage since Joe Montana came to town- or Lame Duck Peterson has reached the detrimental late stages of dementia at an alarming rate. If it is indeed the latter, and this trade does go through, then any hope I've consummated of Lamar's boy wresting the reigns from an overzealous GM/El Presedente/Next American Idol will have effectively gone down the toilet with this team's bleak future.
But this trade won't go through. There is nothing logical about it, unless you are talking two, count 'em, two first round draft choices. Let's ignore for the moment that Minnesota's #17 ain't that great, and after we miss out on Jake Long, Howie, Jr. or Glenn Dorsey with our archaic #5 pick (draft Sedric Ellis!), then we will have to settle for some sloppy seconds in either the O-line or D-line, so what's the point? More draft picks? Where we might land some jewel in the 4th round who may someday be a perennial Pro Bowler? Sounds great!....oh...wait...didn't..we?
Ok, and for arguement's sake, let's just imagine that either Dorsey or Chris Long land at sucky 5 -they won't- I will bet you my live stock that they won't be the LEADING SACK LEADER IN THE NFL!!! So what's the point?
Many may want to jump in bed with Whitlock and proclaim, "It's economical! You don't give top pay to a top athlete on a losing team!" I see. This evokes images of another professional franchise ever-so-close to 1 Arrowhead Way that utilized a similar business model. I believe it was dubbed the "Over-glorified farm league model." Oh man, was it a winning system, and how. The Royals would've been set back generations had they held on to the likes of Jermaine Dye, Johnny Damon, or Carlos Beltran -now THAT's sarcasm.
Another winning business model this move seems to mirror is the recent strides airlines have been making to win our hearts and minds. Shrink amenities, raise prices, and liquidate the customer service department. How's that workin' for ya, Delta? Hello? Northwest? You there?
This may not lead to a rival absorbing us -can you even imagine being the Bronco's farm team?- but it will lead to many many more years of bottom trawling. Jarred Allen is the cornerstone of this beleaguered team, and if we have any hope of a sooner-rather-than-later bounce back, we cannot seriously consider trading him. Besides, if Jarred is so incredulous about Lame Duck Peeds (I'm sure there's a players support group for that) he will be well served to know that there is a stellar chance his tenure will outlive the soon-to-be-dead King's.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Should The Chiefs Go Big D?

Ok, the glaring need to fix the offensive line is too big to ignore. I get that. The Chiefs complete corrosion of their big men has made the team into a perrinial joke. But is it really going to lead to the teams future?

It's very easy to grab up a premiere O-lineman; Jake Long of Michigan being the obvious choice. This draft class is so rich of guards and tackles, and surely the chiefs can use their enormous cap room on a proven, ready-to-go left tackle in free agency; they better because their move to franchise Jarred and save their already huge cap room will make no sense otherwise.

Has it been so long that we Chiefs fans have forgotten what makes this team exciting? Did Dick Vermiel's circus freaks corrupt us that much? What made us contenders? It certainly wasn't our high flying offense. We need to get back to the days of Derrick Thomas, Niel Smith, and Saleamua. We need to have a feared Deron Cherry, Dale Carter, Kevin Ross and James Hasty. This is what makes the Chiefs great: a feared defense.

Yea, We've made great strides to build a respectable defense. The D was great, but the team's losing ways became an infectious disease that clapsed the team. But if we can add some serious man power to our D, wouldn't that offset a mediocre O? How can we pass up a space eater like Sedric Ellis or -God forbid, if he's available- Glen Dorsey. I've seen some draft projections that Aquib Talib slips to the second round. And even after all that there's a good chance some highly rated offensive lineman are available.

Look, I understand the need for us to fix our offense, and that begins with our offensive line. just believe we are making the wrong move by trying to make our offense great again. Make our offense acceptable. Make our defense feared and dominant, and that will present opportunity for the Chiefs to once again dominate the AFC West.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Say What You Will, Herm's Our Man

Everywhere I go there seems to be a new knock on Herm Edwards. "The man won't take chances", then he does take a chance, and it's "the man makes stupid calls". "His offense is too boring" then he let's it fly, and it's "He has no gameplan."
Alright, as it were, I concure w/ many of these knocks on Herm. It would seem that he and his bedfellow Solari have no gameplan. It's as if they are too busy watching Hogan's Heros reruns during the week to bother looking at opposing team's film. Then on game day they're scrambling to make something make sense, which looks a little like this: Run, run, punt...punt, run, drop....groan, groan, groan,....punt, kick, miss.
There is absolutely no philosophy here. And what really gets me is that the man bows to pressure faster than Nancy Palosi's Congress. The moment there's criticism of his system, he calls plays that are way out of character, apparently from some inherent fear of not being liked by the gals and fellas. Well, there is certainly a lot we can find to flaw this coach.
I would like to point out what this man does so great for THIS team RIGHT NOW. He can spot talent. Jarred Page, Kolby Smith, Dwayne Bowe; if there is any method to his maddness it's this: you build winning teams through the draft. We can confirm this just by looking at, what I like to call, the failed Redskin Maniacle, where a team tries to duplicate the New York Yankees by throwing money in the free agency frenzie and comes out like the New York Yankees as total disappointments. I mean the free agent move has turned out to be so disaterous, that their best draft pick winds up dead (no offense, Taylor family). My point is that though Herm may have no game, or game plan, he certainly has a nose for talent and I don't care what coach or system you have, you ain't got talent and you got nothin'.....just ask Nick Saben.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Jared Allen Owes Carl Peterson His Life.

As we wait for this miserable season to end, one bright spot can be trained right on one Jared Allen. Mr. Allen, a fourth round pick from Idaho State (and another mark for my "Stay the Hell Away from the Top 10" arguement; him and Jarred Page...heck, maybe we should just keep drafting guys name Jar(r)ed, but I digress) is sure to earn his way into the Pro Bowl this year as one of the leagues most dominating defensive ends. His never-ending motor coupled w/ athleticism, enthiusiasm, and a sense of leadership has made him both a fan and league favorite. Everyone new he was special after he tied Derrick Thomas for most sacks in the league, but things could have turned out quite different.

Though Jarred has been an exceptional talent, a place among the elite seemed to just elude him. He wasn't a big man, but his love for Schlits tallboys was making him bigger. He loved being a clown, and seemed to draw a lot of attention from it, but he appeared to have hit a wall with his production, and was beginning to look like just a plain clown. Then last year the man scored two DUI arrests in one year, not an easy feat; one you really have to work at.

I got a DUI once and had to attend some AA meetings. My sponsor told me that he drove drunk over 5,000 times and was finally caught. So when you are arrested multiple times for DUI's, you can imagine how many times you get away w/ it.

This was the wake up call for Allen, but he didn't want to go that route. Instead, he demanded a contract extension. King Carl, being the shrewd used car salesman he is, would have non of it, but offered him a payraise to $2.5 mil; not a bad jump from his original $350K salary (man, I'd love to get paid $350K). Allen didn't like Carl's response. He wanted to get paid the big boy dollars w/out acting like a big boy. Instead he kicked and screamed and yelled and cried and threatened to move and insulted the organization in the press and did everything an amatuer athlete would do, but Carl wouldn't budge.

King Carl's like me. I've worked in Title I middle schools that make East LA look like America, I've seen it all. Likewise, Carl wasn't going to let anything like this sway him. He stood his ground. After Jared wore himself out w/ his tantrum and took a nap, he awoke w/ a fresh sense of purpose.

Amidst a period when getting suspended was all the rage in the NFL, Allen bucked the trend. He quit drinking, spent more time at the club, cleaned himself up, lost weight, threw Boomer Grigsby out of his house (he's now staying on LJ's couch)and ran for office.....well, not yet, but you can see the direction he's taking as he embraces the role as a leader. No longer would he use his funny antics for evil purposes, just for the good of the (Chiefs) nation; see: racing-striped mullet and roping cattle....I don't blame him for holding on to his Boss Hog Caddy.

The League recognized his efforts and awarded him back two of his suspended games. For all of you "Let's Lose them Allers", you can see what a mistake this was. His new physique made him unblockable. He will only get better and has now demanded the repect of other teams. With Colts' Dwight Freeney now out of the way, Jared Allen has positioned himself as the top defensive lineman in the league. Things could have been quite different......just ask Jaron Rush.