I remember the days of Bert Bell in the NFL, when preseason games were called exhibition games and the preseason lasted six games. That was before Pete Rozelle coined the clever marketing slogan preseason. During that time, teams went to camp in mid-July with rosters over 100 players and the NFL draft had 17 rounds. Camps were held in far-out places such as Thousand Oaks, CA (Cowboys) and Lake Forest, IL (Cardinals) and were grueling affairs.Players were housed in college dorms and training camp was simply survival of the fittest. Players who had offseason jobs would use the camp to get in shape.
Today, that has all changed. Players have OTA’s are expected to come to camp in shape. This has allowed the NFL to shorten the length of camp and decrease the number of exhibitions (preseason match-ups) and injuries.(According to my Chiefs medical staff sources, Coach Haley has demanded the best-conditioned team in the NFL)
But what is the point of the preseason — NOTHING. It is glorified practice at best. The Detroit Lions were 4-0 last year in the preseason and 0-16 in the regular season. Coaches are experimenting with formations, line-ups and substitutions. PLEASE CHIEFS FANS DO NOT MAKE JUDGMENTS ABOUT THIS TEAM UNTIL THE REGULAR SEASON. If you want something to do check the waiver wire daily. Teams like the Giants, loaded with defensive line talent, and the Packers, with their abundance of offensive lineman, will be releasing players to get down to the 53-man limit. Scott Pioli will be busy using his well-regarded skills in remolding the Chiefs with bargain-basement cast-offs.
In the meantime, until the regular season begins I suggest the following:
1. Avoid reading about Brett Favre
2. Ignore any further interviews with Micheal Vick
3. Turn-off Chris Mortenson and his ridiculous bus
4. Do not stay up till 1 AM. to see the Chiefs replay on NFL Network
5. Do not tweet Chad Ochocinco or T.O.
WHY? Because the preseason is an exhibition, a glorified practice, and in reality means NOTHING.