The Chiefs are looking for a fresh start with a promising season on the horizon. Sound familiar? Kent Babb at the Kansas City Star takes a look back at the 2008 Chiefs training camp and season.
This time last year, the Chiefs were flying. Longtime team president Carl Peterson had relinquished some of his control, giving an inch of power to coach Herm Edwards, who decided the old way hadn’t worked. So the Chiefs went young. It seemed fresh. Players responded. Outsiders noticed.
It’s easy now to suggest Edwards’ way was a mistake. Not even the most loyal Edwards partisans would suggest the Chiefs accomplished much in 2008, other than giving those youngsters some experience. But when did the misery begin? When was the Chiefs’ crossroads moment, when a break here or there might have sent the season on a different path?
Hall of Fame quarterback Len Dawson has a memory in mind.
“Oakland game,” he says of the Chiefs’ loss in week two. “That set the tone.”
Then again …
“The Jets game,” Dawson continues, referring to another loss. “They had that game. That was a big deal.”
The point is that there were a lot of games that defied logic, reason and good sense. The Chiefs stretched the boundaries of probability, from a shutout in Carolina to more than a few unimaginable collapses in front of their home fans.
But the thing is: That’s all over. The Chiefs started trying to forget 2008 as soon as the clock struck ’09, and they’ve made the necessary changes to flush the bad memories for good. A new general manager, Scott Pioli. A new coach, Todd Haley. A new quarterback, Matt Cassel. A new defense, the 3-4. A new this and a new that, all those moves made with this in mind: However 2009 plays out, at least it won’t look much like 2008.
Even though it makes me a little sick to look back at last season (and really anything having to do with Herm Edwards) I think this great piece from Babb should serve as a warning for this season. Just because things look different and a lot of people are excited about it doesn’t mean we are going to see much in the way of results.
One of the main players in last season’s 2-14 record was QB Tyler Thigpen. Thigpen, prepared to push Matt Cassel in camp, is spending his last few free days in South Carolina promoting his alma mater’s new merchandise with a former college teammate.
Tyler Thigpen is now a quarterback with the Kansas City Chiefs, while Quinton Teal is a defensive back with the Carolina Panthers. They will appear at Dick’s Sporting Goods at Coastal Grand Mall in Myrtle Beach from 3 p.m. through 5 p.m. Sunday. Coastal Carolina head coach David Bennett also appears for photographs and autographs.
If you’re in Mytrle Beach, get over and meet Tyler! For all the darkness the Chiefs experienced last year, Thigpen was a rare bright spot. I understand the only thing that matter in the end is your record, but he nearly willed Kansas City to 5-6 six wins. Not too bad for a guy coming from a school I had never even heard of before the Chiefs claimed him off of waivers. Now even though it’s a foregone conclusion who the starting quarterback will be this season, I really do expect Thigpen to help make Cassel better.
And finally today, a HUGE happy birthday to two of the best Kansas City Chiefs sites on the web:
Bob Gretz is celebrating the first anniversary of starting BobGretz.com.
Chris and Joel are throwing a third birthday party for ArrowheadPride.com.
I started KC Chiefs Blog just about 4 months ago and it’s been a pleasure reading both of those sites everyday. Not only are they a couple of the best Chiefs sites, but the best in general. Thanks so much for all of your hard work, guys! I look forward to working along side you for years to come!