5. Elvis Grbac (1997-2000)
If this list is going to generate any controversy at all, this might be a point of contention. That’s because Elvis Grbac and Rich Gannon go hand-in-hand here, and some revisionist history is likely going to have some readers frustrated at seeing Grbac so high in the rankings.
For the sake of review, Grbac was a new face on the scene for the Chiefs in ‘97 brought in to compete with Rich Gannon to be the starting quarterback following Steve Bono’s departure. Grbac won the battle and had the Chiefs at a 7-2 record before a collarbone injury cost him six games. In that span, Gannon led the Chiefs to a 5-1 record while looking better with each passing week.
When Grbac came back, there was a choice to be made, but Marty Schottenheimer went back to Grbac—not only for that season but in the bigger scheme. Gannon was let go and allowed to sign with the Oakland Raiders, with whom he went on to deliver a Super Bowl appearance in 2002, when he also won the NFL’s MVP award.
Still, Grbac was a solid quarterback for multiple seasons in K.C., and he even went to a Pro Bowl in his final season (2000), in which he threw 28 touchdowns—at the time, the second-highest total in franchise history. Maybe there was a better choice to make, but Grbac proved to be a good option as well, even if the achievements weren’t there.