Scott Pioli Speaks
Stew Milne-US PRESSWIRE
Scotty! You’ve got some ‘splainin to do!
If only Desi Arnaz was still with us.
After two straight humiliating losses, thousands of comments from angry fans and one talk radio meltdown, Scott Pioli emerged from One Arrowhead Drive to answer for his team’s total failure.
He sat down and talked with Adam Teicher, pretty much the only reporter at the Kansas City Star who didn’t publicly lambast him this week. Then again, Teicher is a beat writer and not a columnist so I am sure he’d have something to say if he was allowed the platform.
Anyway, Pioli told Teicher that he thinks the Chiefs can still turn this thing around.
“If any one of us knew what the answer was, we wouldn’t be sitting where we’re sitting right now,” Pioli said. “But I also don’t think it’s the end of the world. We have 14 games left. We’re certainly digging a hole but it’s not something we can’t get out of. Everyone within the organization is disappointed in the results so far. We’re all surprised because I don’t think any one of us went into the season thinking we would be 0-2. I don’t think any of us anticipated that.”
Pioli is right. 0-2 isn’t a death sentence. Folks will throw a bunch of stats at you about how few teams begin the season 0-2 and a make the playoffs. That may be true but the Chiefs recently accomplished that very feat and with Herm Edwards as their head coach!
If the Chiefs had won their first four games and then dropped two straight games in the same fashion that they’ve lost their first two this year, fans would be concerned but I doubt we’d see the same outpouring of anger and vitriol that we are seeing now.
0-2 teams often don’t make the playoffs because those teams likely aren’t very good to begin with. It isn’t really losing the two games that keeps those teams from making the post-season; it’s the fact that they don’t perform well in the next 14 either.
Maybe the Chiefs aren’t that good. They sure don’t look like they are. But when someone starts throwing out stats about what other teams have done in the past, I kind of shrug my shoulders. Those teams were those teams. They weren’t the 2012 Chiefs. They weren’t playing the same schedule or players that the 2012 Chiefs will play. One literally has nothing to do with the other. The Chiefs have 14 games left and if they can manage to find a way to win nine or 10 of them, they’ll have a shot at the playoffs. That is the reality.
Teicher asked Pioli about the salary cap and why the Chiefs didn’t spend more money. To Pioli, however, it is a non-issue.
“I think there are things we did do that helped this football team,” Pioli said. “I also know for a fact that this year alone we’re spending over $141 million in cash this year. That’s more than $20 million over the cap.
“It’s been proven time and time again that there’s not a direct correlation between spending cap dollars and winning. There’s not.”
Again, I somewhat agree with this. The Chiefs stink right now and that is on Pioli and Crennel. But when I think back to the offseason, there are only two moves I think Pioli could have made to help the Chiefs have a better team than they do right now.
1. Landed Peyton Manning (though he didn’t look so great last night) or traded the farm for RG3.
2. Re-signed Brandon Carr.
That is about it. The Chiefs could have blown big money on Mario Williams or somebody like that but year after year we see big ticket free agents flop. They could have drafted Luke Kuechly. Then again, Kuechly currently has 9 tackles. Dontari Poe has 5.
Should Pioli have hired a different head coach? I don’t know. The Chiefs responded well to Crennel and it appeared defense was going to be this team’s ticket to a championship. Pioli got his nose tackle and set about giving Matt Cassel the best supporting cast possible. I think most fans, including some national experts, thought there was going to be a pretty good chance of the Chiefs being the AFC versions of the San Francisco 49ers.
Only that didn’t happen.
There really isn’t a whole lot Pioli can say here. The players aren’t playing up to their potential and the coaches aren’t coaching these players up to their potential. Eric Berry is rusty. Derrick Johnson is awful. Jamal Charles and Peyton Hillis have been relatively ineffective. So has the offensive line. Cassel has been bad.
The Chiefs do have time to turn things around. If they don’t, if they continue to be as bad as they have been through two weeks, then Scott Pioli will have a lot more to answer for come the end of the season.For now though, this “don’t panic” lip service is all we’re bound to get.
Besides, I think most fans could care less about what Pioli has to say. What we want is just an end to the losing.