This is our first reader submission article. As you know, we are searching for a new staff writer or two. Over the next few days, I will be posting submissions of writers I am considering. Please take a look at the work and let them know what you think in the comments. What you guys think matters to me because these people will be writing for AA. This is your chance to weigh in so please do so.
Anyone still interested in submitting can send a submission to [email protected] I am accepting submissions until midnight on Sunday the 13th. Thanks to all who have already submitted. I really appreciate your work. We have gotten a lot of great stuff and it is very competitive. This article is a good example of the quality of work we are looking for. More submission posts are forthcoming.
This submission is from Nick Bates. It had no title.
How has this happened? How does a team that has a total of 6 wins in two years (2 in 2008 and 4 in 2009) capture the imagination of the lay-fan in Kansas City? There are many explanations, some even good, but none are rational enough to help explain why people think the Chiefs are moving into contention in the AFC West and the conference.
A lot of people, perhaps, forget how last year ended. Of course, all anyone can remember is the season finale against the Denver Broncos where the Chiefs, “put the hammer down” according to the season ticket commercials and Mitch. They beat a team that had not completely quit—but believe it, they freakin’ quit.
Derrick Johnson finally played and turned in the game of his otherwise bland career by returning two interceptions (Orton gifts) for touchdowns. Jamal Charles lit up the Broncos’ D to the tune of 259 yards and two touchdowns. Hell, Mike Cox even got into the end zone for the only time all year.
Everything was all good in Chiefs’ land. Todd Haley and Charles were all-but making out on the sideline celebrating like they were putting the finishing touches on a 12-and-4 season, only it was the opposite, 4-and-12.
Before that game happened it was doom’s day. K.C. had lost five straight, highlighted by a loss on December 20th to lowly Cleveland, 41-34. Brady Quinn went 10-of-16 for 66 yards and 2 Int’s and still won the game in one of the NFL’s all-time worst winning performances by a QB (just behind Big Ben’s performance in Super Bowl XL). Some dude named Jerome Harrison hung 286 yards and three touchdowns on the Chiefs’ “defense” that day. (That performance alone will cause fantasy guys to take Harrison way too high in the 2010 draft).
Todd Haley was being grilled so frequently by the press and fans that Lindsay Lohan was blushing. He was catching heat still for his ill-fated, alleged, “I could win two games with twenty-two guys off the street,” comment to go along with firing his offensive coordinator just as the season was getting ready to start. Some people (ahem… Jack Harry) were calling for him to be fired—which was just laughable. People were even beginning to side with Larry Johnson, the (alleged)-woman-beater-definite-a-hole after LJ made some disparaging comments about a media member and his own head coach. Looks like the Chiefs’ brass made the right move getting rid of the malcontent/beat-up 56-Oldsmobile that he had become. (The majority of Kansas City’s women applauded the decision too).
So how did we get to the point that has people excited about the 2010 season? The Chiefs were actually worse than the Raiders last year, the stinking Raiders!
What has changed from the pass-dropping, miss-tackle making team that had everyone so depressed in this city?
Well, the Chiefs added offensive coordinator Charlie Weiss and defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel to the fold hoping to regain the magic these two once had with the mini-dynasty of the Patriots. (Can we please try to sign Andre Tippett or Tony Eason, screw it just bring in “Pat” the Patriot and be done with it? Maybe we can bring in heavy alcoholism, the “big-dig,” horrible accents and racism and just call ourselves Boston).
The Chiefs brought in a couple of decent free agents—the best being Ryan Lilja and Thomas Jones if they still have tread on their tires. Draft picks like S Eric Berry and Slot Back (new position name) Dexter McCluster have lit a fire under the faithful fans, however picks like TE Tony Moeaki and G Jon Asamoah may have a bigger impact on the team’s success in 2010.
Former first rounders Tyson Jackson (0 sacks), Glen Dorsey (1 sack), Tamba Hali and Johnson need to put up some numbers this season. In 2009 the “Faulty Four” combined for 140 tackles, 10.5 sacks, 5 forced fumbles, 3 fumble recoveries and 3 interceptions. Former Chiefs’ standout Jared Allen had 43 tackles, 14.5 sacks, 5 forced fumbles, 3 fumble recoveries and 1 interception. One player—that still could be wowing Arrowhead fans and D.U.I. checkpoints—out played the Chiefs’ last four first round defensive draft picks in 2009.
All of these problems pale in comparison to an even bigger potential problem. Does anybody truly know if Matt “the 63 Million Dollar Man” Cassel can play? He spent more time on his back last season than Lohan (two-times! Wham-o!) and was hampered by the worst pass-catching team in NFL history, easily eclipsing 50 drops. Many thought Cassel played better once Charles started cooking, but really he stunk up the joint throwing for only 4 touchdowns and 9 interceptions in the final six games. The Chiefs need more out of him than 16 TD’s and 16 Int’s.
It may be yet another long season at “New” Arrowhead Stadium, but hey, at least you can pee with a divider in between you and the next guy now.
(Did I still just become a season ticket holder? You bet. I am excited to see where we go from where we were.)