The K.C. Chiefs Whack-A-Mole Year

1 Feature From The Bleachers

“This guy is falling.

This guy is falling.

This guy is falling.”

Sounds like a description of the Chiefs off season huh!?  Try saying the above lines three times quickly and see what you get.

Well, I’m not here today to exactly say the Chiefs universe is folding in on itself because they’ve had a load of positives happen this year too but… with Sanders Commings and goings, Brandon Flowers going period, the bearded wonder Sean McGrath lost for good, nary an Eric Berry in the house, a no-show Bowe in game one, Joe May heading for the surgeon’s knife and Donald “Duck” Stephenson’s farming accident (“uhhh, I jess assidentally runned into da back of dat dare PED truck ur honor”)… the downers seem to be, at the very least matching the uppers for the Kansas City Chiefs organization this year.

It’s these ups and downs that make this the Whack-A-Mole season for our Kansas City Chiefs.

Let’s take a look at each one of these “Whack-A-Mole” downers to see what it means for each position group.

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Sanders Commings and Goings

Most fans I talk to are looking at Sanders Commings as if he’s going to be the next Joe Frazier… err… Ed Reed. Who, by the way, is 35 years old but still available to the next contender attempting to woo him. And… I’m not sure that describes the Chiefs anymore so… never-mind!

Commings has… speed, can cover a little, is a good hitter…  IN COLLEGE! There’s no justification at this point for believing he’ll ever amount to anything in the NFL, much less to the Chiefs at Safety.

The full impact of the loss of Sanders Commings is that it unveils the naked truth about management’s approach to addressing the “starting position and depth” at Safety… THEY HAVEN’T. Not in years anyway. For the past… I don’t know how many drafts now… probably since Eric Berry came to the Chiefs… I’ve been waiting for the Chiefs to draft a strong Eric Berry running mate. It just hasn’t happened. Husain Abdullah may turn out to be very good but I’m not holding my breath.

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Brandon Flowers Going Period

The talk behind the scenes, for months, even a year, was that Brandon Flowers didn’t fit the Chiefs new scheme. Eventually, the Chiefs traded him to the San Diego Chargers… no wait… they didn’t trade away their best cornerback… they cut him and then Flowers signed with their division foe partly because, as Flower put it, “I can face my old team twice a year.”

Sometimes I wonder where things all went wrong at cornerback? Just a few years ago we had “The Brandons” Flowers and Carr. Now, Flowers is in southern California and Carr played on one of the all-time worst defenses EVER last season in Dallas. I heard on a radio talk show just today that if either Mo Claiborne or Brandon Carr gets hurt for part of this season that the Cowboys defense has a chance to be the “worst of the worst” of all defenses… ever. Not that I’m hoping for anyone to get hurt but, I’d love to see the Cowgirls harness that mantle.

The full impact of the loss of Brandon Flowers is that it’s added to a giant hole in the Chiefs secondary. Marcus Cooper is still unproven and 27 year old Ron Parker looks like his best days are behind him. After 5 team changes, perhaps John Dorsey got this one wrong. One of  Dorsey’s good off-season pick ups has been Chris Owens. Owens has looked like the Chiefs best corner… who, at 5’9” and 180 is exactly the same size as Brandon Flowers.. actually 7 pounds less but who’s being picky. I guess you get what you pay for (Owens gets $800,000 in 2014). Flowers? The Chiefs are pocketing an extra $7.5M for the privilege of facing him instead of starting him.

With Flowers out of the picture, the success of the Chiefs defense is… down around the corner.

See what I did there?

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The Bearded Wonder Sean McGrath is Lost for Good

With Sean McGrath retiring at the ripe young age of 26 it should be noted that the title of this section is 100% correct. IOW… it was for the best for Sean McGrath to retire, for Sean McGrath and it was for the best for the Chiefs for TE Sean McGrath to retire too.

The full impact of the loss of Sean McGrath? I’m sure PFF would rate this retirement as a +6 or higher.

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Nary an Eric Berry in the House

Eric Berry is facing the longest layoff of his career right now other than the illegal 2011 game one leg cut by WR Stevie Johnson which resulted in Berry losing a whole season of his young career.

It’s not a good sign that Berry hasn’t even able been practice with only two weeks to go until their first game of the season. If he can’t go in game one, the defense takes a huge hit. Tendonitis in a heel can be problematic and recurring if not given the proper amount of rest. R & R, is the tact the Chiefs are taking at this point and that’s why Eric hasn’t even been seen at practice for some time now. If Berry tears the tendon, he could be out for months at a time. So, he needs the rest but that doesn’t bode well for the Chiefs already needy secondary.

The full impact of the loss of Eric Berry is tremendous. At times Berry plays like another linebacker. His tackles in the opponents backfield have become standard and his overall game has progressed to the point that other teams have to gameplan for him.

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A No-show Bowe in Game One

While it’s preferable to have Mr. Bowe present for all of the Chiefs games, if there’s one he could miss and it not have a huge impact, it’s probably game one against the Titans. I thought it was ironic that Dwayne had his biggest game since the 2012 season (other than the playoff game in January) last Sunday night in Bank of America stadium. I guess Bowe is “money” when he needs to be… since there were rumors last week that Bowe could get cut by the Chiefs when he is forced to miss a game from his misbehavior which could void his contract… if the Chiefs so choose to see it that way.

Little miracles never cease.

The full impact of the loss of Dwayne Bowe is that he will basically miss a week of practice and one game against one of the Chiefs weakest opponents in 2014. If Bowe is still with the Chiefs after that, he should have one of his best years. That’s what Bowe does when pressed. If the Chiefs lose that game… it’s all Bowe’s fault.

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Joe Mays Heading for the Surgeon’s Knife

Joe Mays was swiftly becoming one of my favorite players. It’s interesting to note that Derrick Johnson, when interviewed over the past several years and asked about how he feels about playing with his ILB teammate (who ever that may have been that year)… has always kept his answers generic and politically correct. He did the same thing this season when Joe Mays came to the Chiefs.

Now, I see the wisdom is his response choices.

Mays may not have been the best cover man in the business but he was going to help a lot with the run defense. Remember, the Chiefs defense was 22nd in the league against the run (opponents rushing yards).

The full impact of the loss of Joe Mays (for what looks like at least half of this season) is… the run defense will be hurt some but it gives James-Michael Johnson an opportunity to step up. JMJ has been the best linebacker the Chiefs have defending the pass and if he can make some strides developing his ability to read and defend the run, Joe Mays may be forced to stay on the bench when he returns. This also gives the Chiefs more time to get Nico Johnson rolling in his attempt to develop ILB skills. If Josh Mauga can stay healthy, he should be a keeper now too and he’ll also get a shot at the starting position with no-mo-Joe.

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Donald “Duck” Stephenson’s Farming Accident (uhhh, I jess assidentally runned into da back of dat dare PED truck ur honor)

Whack-A-Holy-Moly! Wow. Just… WOW! If I hear another professional athlete confess that they didn’t know what they were ingesting… I think I will UN-ingest all over them. The future of the Chiefs offensive line, as it was being planned this offseason, included Donald Stephenson being able to slide seamlessly from his swing tackle spot starter role to a full time role at right tackle.  So much for seamless sliding.

Just when the Chiefs had made a semi-meaningful trade that sent starting Guard wannabe Rishaw Johnson to the Bucs for a much needed Safety in Kelcie McCray, Donald Stephenson lays a goose (or duck) egg on the organization landing a hefty four game suspension. Hefty because this suspension WILL have an unusually big impact on the Chiefs ability to function as a unit. My guess is that Ryan Harris will take over at RT and if he plays decently over the first four weeks you can expect him to stay there because coach Reid doesn’t like to upset what’s working well.

The full impact of the loss of Donald Stephenson is unknown. While the Chiefs are making headway with getting Eric Fisher up to speed at his new LT job, following an offseason of surgeries, Stephenson has yanked an option right out of Reid’s hands of running him occasionally over at LT (if needed) where Donald has spent plenty of time, the last couple of seasons, filling in for an injured Branden Albert.

I bequeath thee: Nostradamus Ignoramus Donald Dorkus. For being so pathetically predictable and cartoonishly buffoonish.

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What say ye Addict fans? Got a Whack-A-Mole moment you’d like to share? Don’t you think the Chiefs year is getting whackier and molier by the day?

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