Pioli Let Carr Walk For Fear Of Offending Flowers?

Dec 24, 2011; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli reacts during the game against the Oakland Raiders at Arrowhead Stadium. The Raiders defeated the Chiefs 16-13 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE

If there was one thing to concentrate on from Sunday, it shouldn’t be the second consecutive blowout loss to start the season (frankly, that might be too painful to think about anyway), it shouldn’t be your thoughts about the questionable coaching, the defensive breakdowns, not utilizing Jamaal Charles, or the future quarterbacks entering the draft (actually, you could probably start concentrating on that one).

No, the thing you should be concentrating on is the little nugget of information Kent Babb from the Kansas City Chiefs dropped on us this week. In the article titled “Chiefs will never win big with Scott Pioli in charge,” Babb drops the knowledge that I always suspected but didn’t want to believe about Pioli’s offseason personnel decisions:

“He worries so much about trivial matters that it’s impossible to think that such an emphasis hasn’t been an obstacle to the Chiefs’ success. He was concerned enough about what cornerback Brandon Flowers might’ve thought if Pioli had signed Brandon Carr to a richer contract that this factored into his decision to let Carr leave Kansas City and sign with the Dallas Cowboys.”

I had always wondered if this had factored into Pioli’s decision to franchise tag Dwayne Bowe and let Brandon Carr leave in free agency; after all, Pioli had just signed Flowers to a five-year $50 million contract earlier in the 2011 season. Pioli had to know that keeping his number two corner would take just as much, if not more. But to avoid spending the money just to avoid the possibility of offending your number one corner – who, by the way, happened to be best friends with Carr – is ridiculous and downright offensive from a fan’s perspective.

As we all know now, Pioli tagged Bowe, didn’t reach a long-term solution with him, and Carr went to Dallas, where he received a five-year, $50.1 million contract (notice anything funny about those numbers …). In the meantime, the Chiefs continue to get gashed on defense and panic is now ensuing in Kansas City amongst Chiefs fans.

Am I saying this new-found knowledge is a fireable offense by Pioli?


Although the Chiefs seem to be asunder, there are still 14 games left to be played this season, and anything can happen. But if the Chiefs’ season doesn’t produce a playoff appearance or even a winning record, Pioli needs to be held accountable for his actions. And not reaching out to Carr because of some petty and unwarranted fear of offending Flowers will be one of those acts that will stand near the top of a growing list of blunders made during his regime.

With every loss, Pioli’s ice becomes thinner. For his sake, the Chiefs better start winning.

Topics: Kansas City Chiefs

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  • jimfromkc

    What probably chapped Carr is that Flowers received much more money from his rookie contract than Carr did and Carr was on the field more and even out performed flowers at times. I don’t remember Carr being out for any extended time, but Flowers has been dinged up a few times. I always thought that Flowers was better than Carr to start but that Carr had much higher upside. We will see how that works out.

    • http://gplus.to/Tarkus Tarkus

      Keep in mind that Flowers lined up against most #1 receivers, so that should be taken into account when comparing them. Also, Flowers is one of the best corners in the league against the run, whereas Carr is terrible there (and tackling in general). The injury thing is a fair point, though.

      • DoubleD

        Completely untrue. Carr was targeted by #1′s at least as much, if not more often, than Flowers. Add to that, Carr is taller and has far superior ups compared to Flowers. Carr, especially now, is the better corner of the two. Carr is absolutely killing it in Dallas.

        • http://gplus.to/Tarkus Tarkus

          Most #1 WRs line up on the right side, as Bowe does. As Megatron did last year against us. Because QBs usually throw better to their strong side. Ergo, Flowers has the tougher assignment. Flowers is also much, much better in run support, as I said before.

          I didn’t see the Cowboys’ second game, but Carr wasn’t anything special in their opener.

          • DoubleD

            If you’re constantly relying on your CBs for run support, you’ve got major problems up front. This is a passing league, the most important job of corners is to cover. Carr is a better cover corner than Flowers and he’s a better physical matchup for today’s bigger, more physical receivers.

        • KCMikeG

          How many times did Carr play the opposing #1 WR vs Flowers? His stats were that of a good #2 period. They both had 4 int’s but Flowers had 95 ret yards w/ a TD so that just shoots the shit out of Carr (17 ret yards) is better in coverage talk. Great corners, especially in nickel & dime formations had better be able to provide run support and Flowers outplayed Carr last year. Carr had 39T/6A while Flowers had 47T/12A.
          You really need to educate yourself before making such ridiculous statements ” Carr is absolutely killing it in Dallas” REALLY? THREE WHOLE TACKLES & ONE PASS DEFENDED. Definitely killing it earning that big #1 CB pay day.

  • http://gplus.to/Tarkus Tarkus

    I guess you missed the earlier post from Patrick, that said Routt has been one of the bright spots so far.

  • DoubleD

    Here’s the thing. Carr has been a solid cornerback and improving every year that he plays. True, Flowers is a solid performer but I think he has also peaked whereas Carr continues to get better. In fact, right now, I would have to say that Carr is the better corner of the two. Point being, Carr was underpaid in his first contract, so I don’t even see the problem with him being a little overpaid (not that I think he is) under his second contract, if no other reason than as an appreciative gesture for his underpaid performance and as a sign of ongoing belief in the guy. If this how Pioli really thinks and operates, he needs some psychological counseling because his reasoning process, his sense of worrying about what other thinks, his apparent need to defend to his actions, is exactly how a loser rationalizes his decisions.

    • http://gplus.to/Tarkus Tarkus

      It has nothing to do with hurting anyone’s feelings. He wasn’t going to pay a #2 CB more than his #1 CB. Instead he got a comparable player for much cheaper. There is plenty to criticize Pioli about, but not that.

      • KCMikeG

        Thank you for being the voice of reason in a sea of psycho analysis. Carr was a #2 for a reason. Nathan come on “Pioli had to know that keeping his number two corner would take just as much, if not more.” since when do you pay more for a 2nd than a 1st? That makes NO sense. Besides the fact you are completely ignoring the FACT that Carr has dreamed his whole life of being a Cowboy. If Pioli had disregarded Flowers and offered to over pay Carr it still wouldn’t have kept him here and would have damaged the relationship with Flowers. If Pioli had done this everyone would be piling on for him NOT caring about Flowers and how he disrespected him by paying a #2 more than him. Besides the $10M Carr has a whole 3 tackles and 1 PD while $850K Elam has 15 tackles.

        • DoubleD

          Who a player dreams of playing for should not be factor at this level. In the end, it all comes down to feeling like you’re an important part of an organization that you believe in and being compensated for it, and not necessarily in that order. Mike, tell me exactly how you know what ultimately motivated Carr to go with the Cowboys? Would he have accepted a deal with Dallas if he felt like he wasn’t getting paid what he was worth? Do you know exactly how much, if anything, Carr was offered to stay with the Chiefs? Are you a mind-reader? An insider? I mean we all know that Carr was vocally happy about his situation after signing with Dallas but to claim he went there solely because that’s the team he dreamed of playing for seems a tad naive to me in terms of how things really work in the NFL and how agents are the ones who make the important money decisions about player’s careers from the contract side.

          • KCMikeG

            Sorry but you are dead wrong about Carr’s desire to be a Cowboy. If you would do the research, like I did before saying what I did you wouldn’t be questioning my reasoning which by the way didn’t say Carr wanting to be a Cowboy was the sole reason. I KNOW we would have had to pay him more than Flowers because that is more than what his life long favorite team was offering. More importantly I’m not just making up what I say like some on here.
            Carr’s direct quote: “They haven’t spoken anything about money or contract or anything. “If it doesn’t happen, I don’t know where I’m going to go.” Carr, who says he doesn’t recall being nervous that night at the Omni Hotel near the Cowboys’ Valley Ranch practice facility, wanted to be a Dallas Cowboy so bad that he wasn’t concerned about the other teams that were interested. “For him, it was always the Dallas Cowboys,” said Robinson, an assistant football coach at Northern Colorado. “It was always Dallas, Dallas, Dallas. He loved that star.” He loved it from the time he was 6 years old and his parents bought him a Troy Aikman uniform complete with a plastic Cowboys helmet.

            Here’s the link to the whole story:

    • Chief Hokie

      This is spot on DD, however like LAchiefsfan mentioned, it is only speculation. We can’t assume that the sole factor in letting Carr walk was to avoid offending Flowers. I agree though that Carr is probably a better CB than Flowers for his consistency and toughness. Flowers is excellent but he isn’t durable enough.

      DD, on another note, remember when Jeff Fisher was fired by the Titans and you wrote that article on how we should fire Haley and replace him with Fisher, and everybody (including me) bashed that idea? Well, seeing as things are now, you were completely right. Kudos.

  • LAChieFan

    We can hardly call this “new-found knowledge” … it’s “new-found speculation.” And sloppy reporting. And sloppy re-reporting by AA. Babbs doesn’t KNOW this… if he does, he should be sighting sources and verifying this. He’s throwing it out in the ether and we’re canonizing it as fact. Dumb.

    • DoubleD

      Considering this organization’s reputation for secrecy and retaliation, what do you think would have been the consequences for Babb’s source, had he revealed their identity?

      • LAChieFan

        Real reporters talking about real world events with much more serious consequences than the outcome of a football game do this all the time. He could have and should have said, “multiple sources inside the organization” or “one credible source tells me” or “the rumors around the club are” … But he throws it out there as fact without backing it up in any way. That’s not reporting. That’s pontificating. It doesn’t work that way.

        • http://www.arrowheadaddict.com Patrick Allen

          Don’t shoot the messenger LA Chiefs fan. We try to bring you guys all the news and opinions in Chiefs land. Like it or not, Babb and the stuff he writes is relevant to the Chiefs so we are going to bring it to you. No different than telling you what Babb write while we are having a beer over at the pub.

          We aren’t reporting anything. When we do, we make it pretty clear that is what we are doing. Like when we were the first to report Casey Wiegmann wasn’t coming back. http://arrowheadaddict.com/2012/03/13/source-casey-wiegmann-will-retire/

          Just want to make sure everyone realizes that we do a lot of passing along of info to you guys. Injury reports, quotes and so forth. That is so you can be caught up on all the goings on.

          Our jam is the original content we crank out on a regular basis. The opinions, entertainment and columns. The news and stuff is to supplement that. We don’t fancy ourselves investigative reporters. There are people, like Babb, getting paid to do that.

          As for his source or lack of a source in his article, I agree. It comes off as speculation. But we try to pass this stuff on to you guys so you can make up your own minds.

          • LAChieFan

            Fair enough. I wouldn’t expect you to do Babbs’ job for him. My issue is with siting it as fact here… If you had said in the post what you said in this reply, that would’ve been swell. You guys do great stuff… I’m just stating what should be obvious.

          • KCMikeG

            Totally agree.

          • KCMikeG

            Sorry Paddy Nathan isn’t just passing along the news and info he is saying it should be our focus on Babb’s psychobabble instead of the defense, coaching, etc. To support and further validate Babb BS is sloppy and counter productive. IMO

      • nancy

        What is the deal with all the secrecy and retaliation??

    • KCMikeG

      Thank you. The KC press is pissed because they got their access limited by the new regime and they can’t get over it. They ignore the successes, blow out of proportion the problems and can’t wait to run our team into the ground. Sloppy is being kind to Nathan and especially to Babb’s assumption filled babble & Fescoe disgusting rant – bring wives and children into it really? More lame and pathetic than anything the Chiefs have done. I agree with him about winning and the effort by the players and the disappointment but he crossed way too many lines in what he said. Sources? Sources? They don’t need no stinking sources! Just rant about whatever they “believe” and it magically becomes fact.

      • DoubleD

        Yeah well how’s that limiting the press’ access approach working for them now? Karma’s a bitch you know?
        Say what you will about Carl Peterson, at least he did a pretty good job of allowing the fans to have access to him via press conferences, weekly live audience radio shows and the like. The point being, Peterson had a way of making fans feel like they had a voice and were part of the process and yes even a vital part of the team’s identity. Pioli seems to me to be the polar opposite. Condescending, secretive, inaccessible, unapproachable. Fair or not, I don’t think it is all unrealistic to say that this perception of Pioli has become the mainstream view. Who’s fault is that?

  • Chiefer
    • nancy

      Just what I was thinking.. Glad somebody said it!

    • Danny W

      Listened to that the morning of. It made me feel a lot better. You can listen to the shows live online at 610sports.com or get the podcast the day of your favorite show. Just pick and choose which hour their talking Chiefs and go to your favorite website while they fill your ears with Chiefs talk. It’s a thing of beauty.

  • Calchiefsfan

    Trying to get back into the Chiefs after the horror that was last Sunday. Can’t hang my head in shame forever.
    Carr is not the reason our defense has been pathetic this year. Rout has played okay. If we need an excuse to bash Pioli maybe we should look at his coaching selections.
    Why have the Chiefs been so disappointing? Look no further than the coaching. We have enough talent on both sides of the ball, (though I do want a new QB). The Chiefs have not been well prepared. I didn’t expect a win against Atlanta, mostly due to Hali and Flowers being out. I did expect to see Atlanta punt a few times though. I never expected the Buffalo offense, (or defense for that matter), do to us what they did. It was a travesty.
    I had bought into the fact that Crennel’s last head coaching job was in Cleveland, where no one is successful. Now I’m not so sure. The coaches better get this team ready to play against the 0-2 Saints or we’re looking at a long season and another new HC when it’s over.

    • Chief Hokie

      You can only blame the coaches so much. Yes, the gameplanning/adjustments has been pretty bad, but the players have been playing awful. DJ has been getting schooled out there, is that Romeo’s fault? It’s the coaches job to put the players in the best position to win, it’s the players job to execute the plan and to actually win. Both sides (the coaches and the players) are to blame.

      • Calchiefsfan

        You’re right the players have been playing uninspired ball to say the least. Maybe it’s time for Crennel to do one of his “no more Mr Nice Guy” motivational speeches like he did last year. It seemed to work then. I just think it’s up to the coaches to get the team ready to play mentally, as well as the game planning aspects. So yes, I’m laying part of the blame for that on Crennel.

      • Calchiefsfan

        Okay, I just listened to Bob Fescoe’s sound bite/rant that Chiefer has a link to below. You’re right the players need to get their #!&t together!

    • KCMikeG

      Closer to the truth than any of the psychobabble running like diarrhea out of the talking heads in KC.

    • Danny W

      If we get blown out of say the next three do you think Crennel will survive it? What about Pioli? The problem is the coaching your right but most owners don’t let their GM’s run through head coaches and offensive coordinators like Scott has that fast and win as few games as he has. You let a guy pick your next head coach after two failures and and then pick your next quarterback in the draft and your giving him another four years. At the rate we are winning and how drastically we have lost when we do lose, well I just don’t want that.

  • Michael Shaw

    Maybe this is a little off topic, but has ANYONE noticed how bad Buffalo has been beating with Chan Gailey as their head coach?????

    • DoubleD

      It certainly hasn’t escaped me. When he first arrived, Pioli had an opportunity to make Gailey the head coach. One has to wonder where this team would be now had he done so.

  • boo

    this is so dumb. so so so so so dumb. all that matters in the end to the press overall, is the contract’s year/money. carr got 5/50.1, flowers got 5/50. you are telling me that they wouldnt have been able to convince carr totake 5/50 like flowers in order to not one up his teammate? please, if that was out there and carr didnt take it, then its ot at ALL on pioli.

  • AKChieffan

    The article at Foxsports.com says it all. Link http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/story/nfl-scott-pioli-kansas-city-chiefs-sean-payton-new-orleans-saints-winless-teams-one-man-off-field-091812 This writer just bashes Scott Pioli and his ego. That because his ego has basically ruined the Chiefs. What are your thoughts?

  • Jim Harper

    Nobody gets it! Carr went on record more than once stating it had always been his dream to play for the Cowboys. There was no way he was going to stay. Even if we matched the ridiculous amount of money that Dallas did he would have left! So everybody needs to get off the Pioli persecution for not keeping Carr. He was NOT going to stay. Get over it!

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