Sep 19, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith (11) talks with offensive coordinator Doug Pederson (left) and head coach Andy Reid (right) during the third quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. The Chiefs defeated the Eagles 26-16. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas City Chiefs "One Hit Wonders?"

Every year in the NFL there is at least one team that jumps up from the basement of their division and into playoff contention. We’ve seen it before with the Chiefs as recently as 2010, when a four-win 2009 team bounced back in 2010 to win 10 games and make the playoffs. This kind of thing happens all the time.

The problem a lot of those teams that make one-year turn arounds seem to fall back down to earth very quickly and very violently. None of us have forgotten how hard the Chiefs hit rock bottom after 2010, winning only nine games over the next two seasons. How do we know the 2013 Chiefs are not doomed for a significant fallback in 2014?

A post on National Football Post by Greg Gabriel tried to tackle this question of “One Year Wonder” with a simple breakdown of the roster. Here’s the conclusion he came to:

While the Chiefs lost some key players, I think they are a stronger team than a year ago. Being in the second year of both Andy Reid’s and Bob Sutton’s offensive and defensive schemes will only help. Obviously some younger players need to step up, but I feel that will happen, and the Chiefs will challenge Denver for the AFC West title.

Those are some bold words form Mr. Gabriel. Challenge Denver for the AFC West title? He does remember the Broncos made the Super Bowl last season, correct?

Denver is going to be a very good team in 2014 and will be favored to win the AFC West. But like Gabriel says, I don’t think it is an outlandish idea for the Chiefs to be competitive in the division in 2014 as they were in 2013. This isn’t a “one year wonder” situation for the Chiefs.

Three things the Chiefs have going for them that the 2010 team did not is they have substantially better coaching and quarterback play, a deeper roster that is built with a philosophy suited for the modern game, and stability. In 2011 the Chiefs had Matt Cassell at quarterback, the Scott Pioli-Todd Haley feud, a third offensive coordinator in three years, and a roster built to win the 1989 Super Bowl. We’ve been through enough as fans to come up with reasons why the Chiefs will go 0-16 but this isn’t the same organization as it was three years ago.

Kansas City is going to need some breaks like every other team in the NFL will need if they are going to make it back to the playoffs. However, it is not an outlandish thought in the current AFC landscape for the Chiefs to enter January with a chance to make a run for a Super Bowl.

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