Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
Scott Pioli was essentially run out of Kansas City by a mob of angry Chiefs fans, myself included. Although I witnessed it from afar on the east coast, as a diehard Chiefs fan I felt the effects. Scott Pioli entered the fray as Carl Peterson aka King Carl left on a high note, drafting guys like Dwayne Bowe, Tamba Hali, Derrick Johnson, Dustin Colquitt and don’t forget the amazing 2008 Chiefs draft class of Glenn Dorsey, Branden Albert, Brandon Flowers, Jamaal Charles, and Brandon Carr (Barry Richardson is an honorable mention). Pioli was not as bad as people made him out to be.
Pioli’s main issue was never finding a competent quarterback or coach to land in Kansas City after Dick Vermeil left. Not only that, but he was extremely stubborn with Matt Cassel as the quarterback as that was his baby. Todd Haley also was an issue. A successful offensive coordinator and wide receiver guru, Haley was brought in after Herm Edwards’ downfall. Things looked ok until Matt Cassel was hurt and Haley went rogue and played Tyler Palko over Kyle Orton just to grind Pioli’s gears. That move cost the Chiefs the playoffs in 2011 even with Jamaal Charles, Eric Berry, and Tony Moeaki on the bench. After a successful couple games at interim head coach, Romeo Crennel was hired and things went downhill from there. The Chiefs went 2-14 and Clark Hunt had finally had enough. Romeo and Pioli were gone and the new era of Reid and Dorsey has begun.
Here’s a couple things Chiefs fans have to remember though. Scott Pioli wasn’t all bad. The hiring of Charlie Weis and Romeo Crennel (at defensive coordinator) were very good hires. It was shown by a fairly successful 2010 campaign. His draft classes also were pretty decent. Albeit drafting Tyson Jackson at third overall was a mistake, T-Jax has turned out to be a solid player. Pioli’s claim to fame had to have been his 2010 draft class though. In this class are names such as Eric Berry, Dexter McCluster, Tony Moeaki, and Kendrick Lewis. All of these guys made big impacts their rookie season and still make impacts today. Pioli’s 2011 class brought us Rodney Hudson and Justin Houston. His last draft class in 2012 brought us Dontari Poe, Jeff Allen, Donald Stephenson, Cyrus Gray (he’s a personal favorite) and Junior Hemingway.
John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports
Scott Pioli may have had a miserable end to his career in Kansas City. He may have done a lot of bad, (i.e. Matt Cassel, Todd Haley, etc.) but look at all the great Chiefs players still on this roster that we can thank him for. While most, if not all of us, are glad he’s gone, we still have a lot to thank Scott Pioli for here in Kansas City.