We have heard from both Scott Pioli and Todd Haley about how the Chiefs will be a big, strong, smart, fast, tough and disciplined football team. As Bob Gretz points out this morning, Kansas City failed to take care of the smart or disciplined part of that plan in losing to the Raiders yesterday.
If any team over the last 20 years has written the book on playing dumb football it would be Al Davis and his band of silver and black from Oakland. For 10 years, Marty Schottenheimer told his Chiefs that all they had to do was play hard and tough and then wait for the Raiders to screw up. And, they always did.
Now, the Chiefs are playing like the Raiders and they did against Oakland, helping the visitors to a 13-10 victory that is the most unexpected gift that the silver and black have received in some time.
The Chiefs margin of error is a slim one. They do not have enough talent to be able to make mistakes and expect to win games. Haley says they will go back to work on being a smart team on Monday. Something has to change, because the idea of being a smart team is not getting through to these guys.
Smart doesn’t guarantee victory.
But dumb will lock up defeat every time.
I’ve been trying to find the perfect mix of optimism when talking about the direction of the team with the reality of how difficult the 2009 season will be for the Chiefs. It’s the games like yesterday’s that make it hard to keep any of the optimism around. But unlike some people, I will not dub the new regime a failure two games into their first season.
Speaking of which…
As a surprise to no one, Jason Whitlock’s weekly Todd Haley-bashing column was out shortly after the game at Arrowhead ended.
Let’s hope Todd Haley spent Sunday night standing in front of a mirror, screaming at himself.
If he holds himself to the same standards as his players, he might be on the waiver wire this morning.
His coaching display Sunday afternoon against the Oakland Raiders was an embarrassment, as bad as anything I’ve seen in the NFL.
Losing at home to these Raiders on a day when JaMarcus Russell unseated Ryan Leaf as the most ill-prepared quarterback in league history required a special level of coaching incompetence — a combination of arrogance, flawed logic and lack of self-control rarely seen on network TV.
If 22 players off the street can win two NFL games, there were 70,000 people inside Arrowhead Stadium who could have done a better job than Scott Ego-li’s handpicked coach.
I’m not here to defend Todd Haley, but “as bad as anything I’ve seen in the NFL”? C’mon, Jason. You’re better than that. I understand you will never like anything Scott Pioli and Haley ever do. The Chiefs could be celebrating a Super Bowl victory and you will be the one complaining about a 3rd and 4 call in the second quarter.
Haley was not good yesterday, but neither way his quarterback. Where’s the Cassel-bashing? Or how about the defense rolling over on that final drive? There was plenty to dislike. So maybe next week you can write some original material.
Former Chiefs defensive lineman Alfonso Boone could be playing in the AFC West this season after all, according to Brad Biggs at National Football Post.
The San Diego Chargers are not wasting time in their search for a replacement for nose tackle Jamal Williams, who was placed on injured reserve Saturday with a torn triceps. Alfonso Boone is en route to San Diego now and could sign with the team as soon as Monday.
The nine-year veteran doesn’t have experience in the 3-4, but he has played for Chargers defensive coordinator Ron Rivers and defensive line coach Don Johnson previously with the Chicago Bears. Boone made a visit to Oakland at the start of the month but a contract offer did not materialize after the Raiders traded for Richard Seymour.
The Chargers’ run defense allowed Baltimore to gain 130 yards on 32 rushes in the Ravens’ victory. Although the Ravens didn’t break a run longer than 13 yards, they got consistent production.
Boone will be working with a more talented unit in San Deigo, but I still don’t think he’ll be a great fit in the 3-4. Kansas City will get a first hand look at Boone with his new team week 7 right before the Chiefs’ bye week.