The Chiefs Ugly Stepchild Legacy

What is it? What is it that’s so unappealing? I love Kansas City and can’t see why anyone else wouldn’t. Beyond that, I certainly can’t imagine why a top notch coach or premiere player wouldn’t want to raise their family in the heart of the heartland, KCMO.

Yesterday, Arrowhead Addict’s own Patrick Allen confirmed that Philadelphia Eagles ex-head coach Andy Reid will most likely be headed to Arizona. Allen goes on to say that Reid is one on a short list of “big fish” coaches available on the market right now.

We’ve seen this pattern before. The most famous snub of all came last spring from Peyton Every-Ball-He-Touches-Turns-To-Gold Manning.

Now that Romeo Crennel is moving out of town and out of the head coaches office, I’m already anticipating the Chiefs missing out on one high profile coach after another.

So, when did this all begin? Is there really a global perception that KC is no-wheres-ville? Or is it just that size (of the city) does matter after all? Since when does a city have to be big, to be sexy?

Yesterday, Ian Rapoport of rated the Chiefs last out of all current possible locations for coaches to land. Rapoport ranked Chicago, San Diego, Philadelphia, Buffalo and Cleveland — all better locations for coaches to take over.


“(Lovie) Smith was on the unemployment line Monday, along with six other NFL coaches. A respected leader, Smith was let go with one year on his contract, leaving players crushed by his departure. Smith also left the best roster for anyone to inherit, as well as a spot with one of the NFL’s power franchises in a major city with strong ownership. Oh, and he left a quarterback for the new coach to utilize.”


Major city? Un-check.

Strong ownership? Un-check.

Quarterback? Un-check.

You know… I can agreed with him about the quarterback… and I understand the weak ownership suggestion even though he likely doesn’t understand the way the Hunt family deals with organizational issues (and I probably don’t really understand that myself)… but, when he starts downgrading the city of Kansas City — our home town– that irks me to say the least.

On the other hand, most of us are aware of multiple times in the past ten years that major free agents have passed the Chiefs by, without even a courtesy visit. Which, raises the question… is Kansas City one of the NFL’s ugly stepchildren? Is this an unwanted location to play, coach or serve as GM?

Arrowhead has traditionally been viewed as one of the most difficult places for opposing players to visit and the only other location that comes to mind, that is as loud, is in Seattle. So, you’d think players would want to play here.

Which raises more questions because the Seahawks have done fairly well at drawing free agents to their, rather remote, locale. However, success is a magnet and the Chiefs haven’t had much of that in recent years. So, is this “ugly stepchild” perception solely related to the lack of winning?

That’s a bit of a catch-22 isn’t it: you can’t start drawing notable free agents until you are winning and you can start winning until you draw some notable free agents. Anyway, that’ the general idea.

Earlier this year when Peyton Manning sidestepped, even a visit, to KC, the Chiefs had supposedly put together one of the best rosters in the NFL. However, in Peyton’s case this may not have ever been a possibility because of the Scott Pioli-Tom Brady connection and Manning may have thought he was consorting with the enemy by coming here.

So, what do you think Addicts? Does Kansas City have a perception problem for coaches, free agents or GMs? Or, are we about to witness a deluge of coaches attempting to knock Clark Hunt’s door down?

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  • John Sherwin

    There are too many unanswered questions in KC right now. Why would a coach want to come to KC and possibly work with Pioli (or possibly not). I don’t know what Clark is saying behind closed doors, but by not making a decision he seems wishy-washy, management seems unstable, and based on the Haley debacle (and now Romeo), why waste your time as a coach? It’s not an ideal situation by any means and it’s not as if there is an Andrew Luck player waiting with the number 1 pick for a coach to build a franchise and legacy around. There is no question the team has some talent and in the NFL it’s easy to have a fast turnaround (see the Minnesota Vikings – who last year at this time were VERY similar to KC. By the way, their #1 pick was dominating O-lineman Matt Kalil in 2012 draft. Plus the Vikings stabilized a GM position for the first time in years).

  • ArrowFan

    The eye of the beholder. To most we are just fly over country and always will be.

  • Leon Ritz

    I honestly think some of it is a money thing, players know that regardless of cap room KC is not a place that is going to throw money at you to get you. As far as coaches go it’s not so much that Clark won’t pay them because I think he would, they do however know that if the team won’t throw money at a big fish free agent then they as a coach don’t have as good a chance to win as they would with a team that will. I believe Manning had two problems with KC, one was Pioli and the other was that KC had a roster that was really just missing a QB. I personally feel Manning was looking for a team in which needed more pieces than just him so that he could bring in some of his Indy guys. Look at the teams he visited, Arizona, Miami, Denver, Tennessee, all had spots for some of his guys, KC really didn’t. If you think about it KC had Moeaki, Boss, and Maneri at TE so really no place to sign Tammee. They also had Bowe, Breaston, Baldwin, McCluster, so really no place to sign Stokely. I think Manning wanted to bring in some of his guys to help him succeed and in KC there just wasn’t the roster space for it.

    In my opinion this is a huge year for Clark and could be the very year we need to turn the franchise around as it is viewed by others. If Clark goes out as business as usual and signs a Ferentz or another offensive coordinator from another team instead of getting that big fish head coach people will see it as status quo and nothing will change. If he goes out and brings in a Reid, Gruden, Cowher, or even a Chip Kelly I think perception will change somewhat and players/coaches around the league will see that KC is serious about winning. The only way Clark is going to get one of these coaches however is to hand them a blank check in a sense. The Rams did it with Fisher and it has clearly helped them, hopefully Clark sees and understands that.

    This is your chance Clark to change the perception of the franchise. Time to go catch a Big Fish.

  • tm1946

    It may well have started with ownership. If the fans think they are cheap, petty, not interested in wins, that has to come from somewhere. It is not true, I am sure but those words get out. The NFL is to small a group and if a person has skills, why would they be dieing to join a sub group with ownership who is cheap, petty, and does not want to win when there are 31 others to look at?? How Clark changes this is…..not really sure, sorry.
    Next is the city, we love it and once players/coaches spend some time here, it is a great place to be. But NYc we ain’t. We never will be and for some who possibly were never raised in our type of environment, it may not seem an ideal place.
    Guess we will have to depend on folks like Clark to entice players with extra money (something he does not seem all that interested in doing) and we make them welcome and to be part of our friends and neighbors.

  • tm1946

    Just reported candidate Koetter just signed an extention in Atlanta after meeting with the Chiefs…..wonder what that says about ugly stepchild??

    • Leon Ritz

      Nothing really, don’t think he was really a leading candidate anyway for Chiefs job or any other.

    • toperspective

      It says he would rather be an OC for a good franchise rather than a HC for a dysfunctional franchise.

    • Jim Harper

      It says nothing

  • drakeku

    i think this question is answered by looking at the environment at arrowhead last year. as a result of clark hunt and scott pioli kansas city is the equivalent to a nuclear waste last. fan negativity is at an all time high. owner and management incompitentence is at a meltdown level and those two people are still running the show. not only that but clark hunt has said hes going to make decisions hes already proven he isnt qualified to make. why would anybody want to come to work for clark hunt and scott pioli? i dont even want to go to the games with these two jokers around much less work for them…well working for them would get me close enough to punch one in the gut :)

  • Zach

    I’ve always believed that the Chiefs have always tried to get a financial discount on free agents which is never going to work in free agency. Also the general manager has always turned off potential free agents from Peterson to Pioli. I think its about time that Clark got involved with this team and started playing good cop sometimes to help land desirable coaches and free agents

    • toperspective

      You think Clark has it in him? The guy is one the the cheapest owners in the NFL. Combine cheap with incompetent and it’s not a recipe for success.

      • ArrowFan

        Yea because cheap owner usually fork over the most $$ on their GM than any other team in the league. Pioli is the cheep bast%^$$ not Hunt.

    • ladner morse

      Reid doesn’t go overboard about signing players to inflated contracts… so he and Clark should work well together… IF that come to be.

  • toperspective

    It’s all about ownership and management. The franchise is dysfunctional and has a horrible reputation. Hunt isn’t interested in winning, he only cares about the bottom line.

    • ladner morse

      Yea… it’s disturbing. I was watching an interview by Mitch Holthus of Clark Hunt and he asked Clark to express his “fire to win” and Clark got as about emotional a rock at the bottom of a lake. I hope that FIRE is there… but, I don’t see it or hear it.

  • ArrowFan

    Stop with the cheap crap on Hunt he went out and got the most coveted GM and paid him more than any other in the league. This last season our most miserable ever we where second in payroll out of pocket. We cant get FA because Pioli sucks and is the cheap #$#^% not Hunt. Hunt knows he made a mistake with Pioli, now he is trying to get a very coveted HC and will probably pay out the ass for him. On top of that if and when Pioli gets fired it will cost Hunt millions. [Yea all I see is a cheap ass owner not wanting to spend $$ (if I had sarcastic font I would use it).] He gave a GM to much power and control because that is what his father did, now hopefully lessons have been learned. By all accounts it appears they have been and Hunt is going to let our next HC finish off Pioli’s castration.

    • Danny W

      If he isn’t firing Pioli who can’t get players or good coaches in KC then he is cheap. This year the because of the TV deals and the CBA the Chiefs made more money than ever. It’s time to show the fans that your a committed fan as an owner.

  • Danny W

    What kind of big time coach wants to come to a city were the GM is in a lame duck situation with no quarterback. Sure we have a bucket of pro bowlers but what else to make this team a winner.

    • ladner morse

      One of the things to like about Reid is that he’s had a lot of player and coaches under him over the years and we could expect a solid pipeline of talented people coming to KC just because of his connections.

  • James Denton

    As a Chiefs fan and a person whom lived in the city not 2 blocks from the stadium complex for over 10 years I don’t see where a person could get off on degrading the city of KC or it’s fans!! If he had to put up with what us fans have had to put up with during the Pioli Era he probably wouldn’t attend games or support the team either! But as for a draw for coaches and players I don’t see anyone who would want to come here as long as Pioli is still getting a paycheck! I think Clark Hunt is trying to right the ship in many ways and I truly think he will open up his pocket book to do that especially where the coach is concerned because as far as i know there is no salary cap on coaches! Then if you get the right coach, and you see that the owner is trying to do the right things (considering the coach wants Pioli gone) Then the players will come! Then when the fans of KC see the plan coming together ( good coach and staff, Different GM, Good free Agency, and a decent draft) Then the fans will return and Arrowhead will rock once again!!! I would like to say one last thing though if we get Andy Reid as coach look for him to possibly try and bring in Kevin Colb from Arizona as a QB option to compete next year! They have a history together and Andy can get the best out of him! GO CHIEFS!!!!!!

  • Jim Harper

    I think the entire thing with Manning was about Pioli. Manning is very well connected around the league and I am sure he knew all about Mr Control Freak. Manning basically wanted to install his own offense and Pioli would not give any control to a player about how to run his team. I don’t think it had anything to do with being small market. Indy was small market in the midwest and he was happy there. No this was strictly about Pioli. I am also sure that Reid will not put up with Pioli either.

    • ladner morse

      I agree… and now that Reid looks like he might come to KC… I’d bet that Pioli is toast.