The Darkside of Bill Polian

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Last week, I offered up my opinion on who I think the Chiefs should take with their first round pick, Matt Barkley. I got some positive responses, and I got some negative responses. I clearly expect that to happen again with this post, especially after the editor of Arrowhead Addict, Patrick Allen, wrote about the rumors that have been cycling around about the possibility of former Bills, Jaguars and Colts General Manager, Bill Polian, being a likely candidate to land in Kansas City if current Chiefs GM, Scott Pioli, is let go after the season.

This is what Allen wrote about the possibility: “Hiring Polian would be a brilliant move by Hunt. He’d be getting an experienced executive and personnel man but at the same time, he’d be getting the younger Chris Polian as well. Polian senior was 69 when the Colts fired him in January. He likely won’t be with the Chiefs for long but he certainly could stick around long enough to get the franchise back on track.”

The responses in the comments section were mostly positive to this idea, as I figured they would be. When first considering GM candidates this season when it became clear this whole Scott Pioli thing wasn’t working out, Bill Polian was one of the first guys that came to my mind. After all, he’s taken two different teams to five combined Super Bowls, winning one. He’s won multiple Executive of the Year Awards, and it’s hard to deny the sustained success he was able to achieve with each team he managed.

Then I started to remember some rumblings coming out of Indianapolis when Polian, and his son Chris, the GM, were fired. While many other fans of many other teams seemed shocked that Polian would be fired because of one bad season missing his star quarterback and after maintaining such a high level of success over the years in Indy, I remember Colts fans not being that shocked. In fact, many of them, if my memory served me correctly, were ecstatic that Polian was gone. After spending a few minutes on Google, I found articles supporting my memory.

The first article I found was from the Colts’ SB Nation Blog, Stampede Blue, and titled: The Polian Reign of Terror Ends. As the article goes:

“I couldn’t get out of my head the unbelievable culture of fear that the insecure, violently paranoid Polians used to keep control of the organization. And I won’t lie. I’m glad Polian and his equally odious son were fired.

Not reassigned. Not ‘allowed to resign.’ Fired.

It was a fitting end to two people who simply lacked the ability to treat others decently and respectfully, especially if those others worked under them…

… I don’t wish plague or ruin on the Polian household, but I am glad that their silly little game of playing dictator is now out of Indianapolis.”

Those are some pretty strong sentiments. And the blogger is not alone. Here is another story, this one from the IndyStar, which documents some of Polian’s dictator habits including arrogance, openly ignoring employees, a God-complex, and overall douchebaggery. And yes, I know what you’re thinking: that sounds like Scott Pioli.

And this is exactly why the Chiefs and Clark Hunt should stay as far away from Polian as they possibly can. Just because we’ve become accustomed to one dictator is no reason why we should hire another one. Think of this as GMs think of coaching changes. When one coach is fired, the most common thing to do is hire another head coach with a near opposite personality/coaching style as the one just let go. Think Herm Edwards to Todd Haley and then Todd Haley to Romeo Crennel. Call it an over-correction, but this is just something teams and management tends to do.

I don’t know about you guys, but I’m tired of the whole dictator thing in Kansas City, and that sound like exactly what the Chiefs would be getting. True, what Patrick Allen wrote earlier highlighted Polian’s positives, and admittedly there are many. And I will also admit that winning hides the flaws that losing brings to the surface. But I don’t know if I can support another General Manager/whatever Bill would be that would cause anymore anxiety at Arrowhead.

Been there, done that.

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  • BoiseChiefPotato

    The main difference between the two dictatorships is… Polian is self proclaimed deified persona has seen results. Pioli has seen a pair of eccentric hipster glasses upgrades and an empty stadium. I’ll take a regime that will produce results and entertainment no matter their style.

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

      “Pioli has seen a pair of eccentric hipster glasses upgrades and an empty stadium.”

      Comment of the day, for sure. Hilarious.

  • Drewfish

    I believe there will be positives and negatives to every GM possibility regardless of who it is and what they’ve done in the past. You know everybody would have the complete opposite feelings of pioli next year if we were to go 11-4 and make it to the AFC championship. Im not say its going to happen and im not saying its not going to happen. Anythings possible in the NFL, look at the saints one year 13-3, the next barely under .500 all just because of coaching change, there offense was nearly exactly the same. Yes we have a bad group of QB s And we have no idea who is going to be our QB next year, Barkley, Another draft choice, trade, Quinn cassel…no one knows. I really don’t want a father son duo. We cant keep turning over GM every 4 years we need constancy …what if polian cant get it done in 3-4 years, your all going to be here complaining just like now, speculating who’s going to be the next GM in 2016. Its not an instant fix. Pioli has had some great drafts here. Every player from 2010 draft was a starter this year at some point if not every game and almost every one from 2011 was as well. Then this year was decent too, 3 of the first three players were starters by years end and the O Linemen did a great job filling in. So i say give pioli one more year before we throw him under the bus!!

    • Calchiefsfan

      I agree Pioli’s strength is the draft, the problem is he doesn’t know how to pick a head coach. Or work with them for that matter.

      • Drewfish

        Honestly i think that having great drafts is better…remember that even a great coach cant turn crap into gold….

        • Calchiefsfan

          I don’t know. What we’ve experienced this year is a bad coach turning gold into crap. Well maybe the Chiefs aren’t gold talent wise but we have enough to be playoff contenders.

          • Drewfish

            very true….

  • Doc

    I like the one article on here that talked about the possibility of the guy from TB that has interviewed for GM positions with other teams. From what I remember from the article he is knowledgable and has good insight to picking players. Plus he hs worked to turn around TB.

  • Danny W

    Polian is too old. I would like Ross out of New York. I also think I would make an amazing candidate. Yes thats it, your own Danny W, for GM of the Chiefs.

  • Chief Hokie

    Not much of an argument here, Nathan. You bring up a couple articles about people complaining about Polian being a dictator but you don’t actually provide any examples of him doing something dictator-like. A few quotes here and there about people complaining about a GM and that justifies your point?

    Also, even if he were like a dictator, he’s GM, he’s the one in charge of making personnel changes. You can’t prove that Polian doesn’t look for anyone else’s input when making management moves. Lastly, even if Polian were a douche bag like Pioli, at least Polian wins games.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=7407726 Nicholas Alan Clayton

    Here’s the deal, executives tend to be douchebags. However, there are effective douchebags and incompetent douchebags. I prefer the former. Pioli is the latter.

  • http://www.facebook.com/russ.dye.75 Russ Dye

    As a colts fan I was thrilled when we dumped the Polians. The closest comparison I can think of is a salesman working his tail off in the first three years and then living off the commissions (i.e. Players) for the next 10 years. The Polians kept paying their aging starters more and more money, never making ANY free agent or draft moves, and seemed to piss off the entire Indianapolis media. These guys are talanted GM’s, no doubt, but you don’t want them around for long. Look at what happened when one player, albeit Peyton Manning, got hurt… 0-13 start 2-14 finish… That to me is a total lack of planning and management.

  • freshmeat62

    The Chiefs don’t need another dictator like Pioli, if Polian is that way. I’m not really sold on Polian’s record of late anyway. Other than being extremely lucky that Manning was there when the Colts needed a QB, his drafts haven’t been spectacular, I would say average at best.

    I would prefer someone like Carl Peterson when he came to the Chiefs. He and Schottenheimer worked well together. Peterson was the boss but he listened to Schottenheimer. I know bringing him up is not popular but he was a good GM. I think it was his image of the dark brooding guy in the black leather coat that turned a lot of people off. In his 20 years here, I saw 3 mistakes that he made. 1. Hireing Gunther Cunningham as a HC. 2. Not building a defense for Vermeil. 3. Not tearing the team apart and rebuilding when Herm Edwards started, instead he waited one year too many.

    I agree w/ the Parcell’s theory that if he is going to be responsible for cooking the meal, he needs to have a say in buying the groceries. If the Chiefs can find a coach like Bill Cowher, who I don’t think would take any guff off of anyone, and a GM that he can work with, not for, I think that would be a winning combination.