Raiders of the Lost Clark

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Oct 12, 2014; Dallas, TX, USA; FC Dallas club president Dan Hunt (left) and Clark Hunt (right) chairman of Hunts sports group present Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder Landon Donovan (10) with gifts before the game at Toyota Stadium. FC Dallas beat Los Angeles 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

In some ways I believe Clark Hunt hired himself when he hired Andy Reid: Mr. Nice Guy, Mr. Easy Going, Mr. Get Along With Everyone.

One of the most successful modern day coaches, Bill Parcells, had this to say about getting along with everyone,

"“I think confrontation is healthy, because it clears the air very quickly.”"

Do I want Clark Hunt to turn into Dan Snyder…  or be one of the Jerry Jones’s of the league who attempt to become self-made football experts (when they clearly are not)? No. Not at all. However, the way Clark Hunt is treating the Kansas City Chiefs organization as strictly a business… and while Clark Hunt is good in the field of business… he is not meeting the needs of a major league sports franchise. And Hunt needs to realize his limitations in that arena especially since the Chiefs are only one of at least a dozen of other responsibilities he sees to every month.

If Hunt won’t take a public accounting of his team or share out loud about his investments in the Chiefs, we can do it. Aside from Travis Kelce and Jeremy Maclin… when you consider the Chiefs very best players (Justin Houston, Tamba Hali, Jamaal Charles, Derrick Johnson, Eric Berry, and Dustin Colquitt)… they were drafted by the previous general managers and coaches.

Clark Hunt has signed off on a contract for a franchise quarterback in Alex Smith to the order of a 4 year, 68M dollar deal with 45M guaranteed. Naturally, you’d expect he’d want assurances from the coach and GM that a viable offensive line with the capacity to provide top notch protection for his million dollar baby QB will be provided. The offensive line of 2015? It’s on pace to allow more than 70 sacks this season. For Clark Hunt, a two times over billionaire, maybe a 45M guaranteed contract is just a drop in his who cares bucket? We can only speculate.

These kinds of evaluations (mentioned above) are the duties and burdens of an owner. I just don’t see Clark Hunt making these tough evaluations. So, it’s harder to see him making the tough decisions.

There are those who have suggested that there may be, other underlying reasons or possible explanations, that involve the Hunt family, about why the Chiefs haven’t been consistent playoff contenders in past four plus decades.

  1. American: A Peril- Some people believe the Hunt family is in the business of teasing fans with just enough moves and trades each offseason to keep the turnstiles a-turning. I can’t blame fans for thinking that might be the case. How could we ever know one way or the other? It has been repeatedly quoted, “the NFL is a business” — American capitalism at work for you — but that belies the notion that the Chiefs owners are playing to win. Instead, it says, they are playing to make money… and insure that they continue to do so… at the peril of hopeful K.C. fans around the country and across the globe.
  2. Just “When” Baby?– Number one begets two here… in that a growing number of people think that the Hunt family gave up the need (or desire) to create winning legacy a long time ago. You can see why there may be those who grasp at this theory with both fists because as long as the Chiefs franchise has continued to make money, their leadership has remained out of the public eye. A long time rallying cry for the Oakland Raiders has been, “Just Win Baby” while Kansas City Chiefs fans who wonder if another championship will ever come are crying, “Just When Baby?” but, it seems to have fallen on deaf and dumb ears.
  3. It’s Business Politics As Usual- It would be conservative of anyone to say Clark Hunt is conservative. Especially as it applies to the way he does business. Example: let’s say that Andy Reid wants to pull Alex Smith and start Chase Daniel or Aaron Murray (which I would support) for the remainder of the 2015 season to see what he’s got. Can you imagine the meeting between Clark Hunt and Andy Reid as he explains that the 4 year, 68M contract he gave to Alex Smith 14 months ago is now not such a good idea. Some owners don’t mind moving on from huge financial commitments but that hardly seems to be Hunt’s modus operandi… unless a player is in the last year of a contract like Dwayne Bowe. Now, imagine Hunt turning around and attempting to sell the idea (of starting Murray the rest of the year) to his Hunt corporation siblings. It’s not going to happen because that’s how Polly ticks.

The “Save Our Chiefs” movement of three years ago apparently had an impact on the Hunt family. Enough to help give rise to making a change. If that’s what it takes… creating a grand social insurgency… then what does that say about the Kansas City Chiefs ownership?

I’ve been a Chiefs fan and been following them since before their Super Bowl victory and this is the first time I’ve wondered if the team would be better off with a new owner. If Clark Hunt wants to, he can make his coaches accountable but, who will hold Clark Hunt accountable? I’m not sure that is within the Hunt Enterprise’s lexicon of business practices.

There’s only one person who can make a real culture change happen and that’s Clark Hunt.

Or a new owner.

Until then, every game is a… Raiders of the Lost Clark game. A game that other teams won’t mind playing at all… because there are very good odds they’ll win.

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So, what do you think Addict Fans? Do you have the wherewithal to look into the owner as the possible problem?