Chiefs Likely Start 0-4, So What?October 4th, 2009 by Lee Eldridge
Listening to the media coverage of the Chiefs this week has been interesting to say the least. Quarterback Matt Cassel was drilled by the local sports media about the team’s losses. Reading some of the blogs and comments from the fans has been equally frustrating. So let me ask one question. What did people expect?
The Chiefs are a bad team. They have a first year general manager. They have a first year head coach. And what amounts to a first year owner, who has hired his own people for the first time. They are one of the youngest and least experienced teams in the league. The previous staff drafted poorly, especially during the Vermeil years where the Chiefs are left with only three players from those five drafts. Let me repeat that one. Three players from five drafts. These drafts SHOULD be the core of your team. The Chiefs were 2-14 last year. What did people expect?
This year the Chiefs are 0-3 after losing two games on the road to two of the best teams in the league, and an admittedly frustrating loss to the Raiders at home, after dominating them in most statistical categories. And the Chiefs will likely lose to the Giants today. Another one of the best teams in the league. What did people expect?
I’m a glass is half full kind of guy. An optimist. And best case scenario had the Chiefs at 1-3 after today with their lone win coming against the Raiders. The Chiefs have been faced with what may be the toughest schedule in the league for the first quarter of the season. What did people expect?
I predicted the Chiefs to go 6-10, which now looks tough after the home loss to the Raiders. And for me, the only real surprise in the Chiefs play has been just how awful the offensive line has been. But it’s a bit hard to judge them based off of losses to the blitzing Eagles and the swarming Ravens. They make a lot of offensive lines look bad.
Are Haley and Pioli the right people to lead the Chiefs back to the playoffs? I have no idea. It seems that with most rookie head coaches, you have only about a 50-50 shot of that coach reaching year four with the same team. I believe that Haley and Pioli were good choices. But that doesn’t guarantee they’ll be successful.
I think when this season is over it will be interesting to compare this team to the 2001 Vermeil team. That team finished 6-10 after starting 1-6. They had traded for a Trent Green, who struggled early in Kansas City, mostly because of a lack of talent at wide receiver. He was even nicknamed Tr-INT by Jason Whitlock. They had completely revamped the coaching staff and offensive and defensive systems. Sound familiar? I think when we look back at this season, we’ll see a lot of similarities with that 2001 team. A team that struggled early after a lot of changes, but ended the season an improved team.
And on to a similar note, I’m glad Joe Po has continued to contribute to the Star. Joe is also an optimist, and here’s his new column on the Chiefs.