Ranking every Kansas City Chiefs starting quarterback since 1990

Super Bowl LVII - Kansas City Chiefs v Philadelphia Eagles
Super Bowl LVII - Kansas City Chiefs v Philadelphia Eagles / Cooper Neill/GettyImages
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21. Tyler Palko (2011)

For all the nice things one can read about Tyler Palko the man, Tyler Palko the player was never going to get the job done.

Palko is the perfect example of "just because he got it done on one level…", because he graduated from Pitt as the best quarterback in team history not named Marino. He was able to earn slight NFL attention from teams like the Saints and Steelers as practice squad fodder in between attempts for more playing time with the CFL and UFL before landing with the Chiefs as a reserve/futures signing in 2010.

Palko would find his way onto the active roster by season’s end and earn a few minutes of real snaps late in a meaningless game. From there, he somehow served as Matt Cassel’s primary backup in 2011 and started four games that year. If you were watching the Chiefs during that time, you’ll know that four minutes was too much for Palko, let alone four games.

Really, we’re underselling this. Palko took forever to throw the ball a very limited distance because of a weaker arm. He was a man so good at telegraphing his passes that Samuel Morse would have blushed. And here’s where the Palko story gets weird: the Chiefs let him start a full quarter of a season in a very winnable year in the AFC West.

The Chiefs would finish 7-9 but could have claimed a division title without much effort if only Scott Pioli had actually gone shopping at the quarterback position. Instead, he hamstrung Haley as a coach with a QB who manufactured two touchdowns in four games.