The Morning Fix

“Sometimes it’s just a lack of doing it the right way, not having the sense of urgency to do it,” Haley continued. “Sometimes you’re doing it the right way and you’re trying to get an extra yard or try to get to the first down marker or make somebody miss and then the technique slips. In the cases here that we’ve seen at least from carrying the football and then losing it, it appears that it’s been technique.”

Each injury happened in an instant, and what follows, Gladstone said, is a long spell of inactivity, followed by surgery and rehabilitation. He said players almost never try to run for 10 to 16 weeks after surgery, and there’s time spent after that trying to cut and pivot — movements common among positions that rely on quickness and agility, such as those played by Berry and Charles. Players aren’t often 100 percent for about six months.

And most times, the first stage of recovery isn’t even the most difficult.

If the Chiefs do indeed play poorly enough to land the top overall pick, it likely means that Haley is out of a job, even though it’s something that he insists does not enter his mind.

“My focus is, and will continue to be, and has been on, `What can we do to be better?’ It was the same the first year, last year and this year, and right now, we’ve done some things that have caused us to lose a couple games,” he said. “Right now we’re 0-2 in the first quarter of the season, and the head coach — and I know the players and the staff — will be doing everything in our power to change the results.”

The old bromide that a quarterback had to pay his dues as a backup is becoming as obsolete as single-bar facemasks.

“Every situation is a little different, but I believe playing quarterback today is harder than it’s ever been.,” said Fox analyst Troy Aikman, who was 1-15 as a rookie with Dallas in 1989 before leading them to three Super Bowl titles in his Hall of Fame career. “Yet, we’re seeing more quarterbacks have more success than we’ve ever seen before. When I came in the league, the only guy who had any measurable success as a rookie was Dan Marino.

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