Let’s start here: I do not care about the results of Friday’s preseason shellacking.
I, like you, have read many different takes by now. Some good, some bad. I thoroughly enjoyed Crocker’s attempt to glean some knowledge of how our backup backups played. Paddy’s “Earning their Arrowheads” is always fun, even when Thom Jones gets one.
The worst stuff I’ve seen out there is the sarcastic “all is lost!” take, in which the writer mocks anyone who was discouraged by their team losing 25-0. This, to me, is the deepest kind of bullshirt (spelling intentional!), because it attempts to establish intellectual superiority based on what is actually intellectual inferiority. “You’re not able to immediately dismiss anything negative about the Chiefs? Jeez dude, how stupid are you?”
Maybe I’m just lazy (or dead inside?), but I was unable to muster any kind of reaction. I watched the game, had some beers, went out afterwards in my D-Bowe jersey, got into a shouting match with a stranger, took my pants off, fell asleep on the local tennis courts, got up as the sun was rising and went home. Typical Friday night, really. The game had no effect on me.
more after le jump:
Seriously though, we shouldn’t worry too much about that score. Half our starters didn’t play, as Josh Looney was all too eager to point out.
This would probably be a good time to discuss what Looney’s job is, as there seems to be some confusion in Chiefs Nation on that front. Josh Looney is not a reporter; he’s a Chiefs insider. He works for the PR department. I’ve got nothing against the guy, he seems cool enough, but you simply cannot take what he says at face value. He is only telling us exactly what the organization wants him to tell us. I don’t even blame him for that. Its his job.
I’m not saying you shouldn’t read Looney, because in fact I do. But you need to have a discerning eye. Read him not as an unbiased source, which he quite obviously is not, but as a window into what the Chiefs front office wants its fans to hear. When he tweets, “For those asking, these #Chiefs didn’t play 2nite: Breaston, Hali, Flowers, Moeaki, Gaither, Gilberry, Dorsey, Wiegmann, Gregg, DJ, McClain” is it really because the masses were demanding that list? Maybe. More likely, its because the Chiefs wanted that info out there.
Check out his next tweet if you don’t believe me:
“more #Chiefs who didn’t play: Cox, McGraw, Carter, and T. Johnson.”
Todd Carter, Mike Cox and Tervaris Johnson? Raise your hand if you even know who all three of those people are. Could a tweet like that possibly have been for “those asking”? No, it could not have. The point of that tweet is to provide justification for the lopsided loss. “Look at all these guys who didn’t play!” Right. Things would’ve been way different if the backup kicker was out there.
The Chiefs want to have their cake and eat it too on this one, as they often do. They want to be able to charge people full price for tickets, run a glorified scrimmage, and not take any heat for putting out such a terrible product. And of course, they don’t want anyone to “speculate”, but they also don’t want to tell us anything. They want to play games with the depth chart, but they don’t want anyone to ask questions about it. Its a strange sense of entitlement for a first-time GM and head coach, and its what keeps me from fully getting behind these guys, as much as I want to.
I’ve wandered a bit here, as is my wont, but allow me to bring it back home and re-iterate that I really don’t care about that final score. Looney may be a company man, but he’s right, those guys didn’t play. This game was not an accurate measure of our talent level, which I still believe is high. What I’m left wondering is, why did Haley sit all of those guys? Why was his strategy so different from Tampa’s, a team very like our own, that was working with the same time constraints we were? Does anyone honestly believe we got more out of that game than they did?
This is sort of the same issue I have with the depth chart. I just want to know why. I don’t want people to scoff and tell me to drop it, I don’t want to hear fans make up excuses, I just want to know why our coach insists on making these bizarre tweaks, and what they’re supposed to gain us. I really don’t think this is unreasonable. For the rest of the league, the best player is #1, the second-best #2, and so on. For us, depth charts supposedly don’t mean anything. To me, that smells.
Maybe I should stop worrying about stuff like this and just enjoy the games. I’ve considered that. Lord knows I have. But at the end of the day, I’m a (fake) journalist for a reason. I wonder about things. All the time. Even things I know I’ll never find the answers to. I wonder if David really fought Goliath, and if so, what the size difference was. I wonder how humans first started eating lobster. I look at random people on the street and wonder if they’re happy. I wonder if Tolkien meant for the Glorfindel in Rivendell to be the same one from Gondolin (I guess we all wonder about this). And most of all, I wonder about our coach, our GM, and their plans for this team that I love. I can’t help myself.
And maybe because of that, I’m bound to always be a little at odds with these guys. Because part of their plan, for good or bad, is for us not to know the plan. For a lot of us, that has been hard.
But a 25-0 preseason game? Sh*t, son, I’m from Kansas City. NEXT.