Kansas City Chiefs head coach Todd Haley took his time before rewarding his team last season. The foot was seemingly never taken off the gas during last year’s training camp, but as we have seen early and often: things are very different in year two under Haley.
This morning’s normal practice originally scheduled to be outside was instead moved inside to the air conditioned practice facility for a “glorified walk-through”. Haley cited the first seven practices in “pretty good temperatures” as the reason.
“After yesterday afternoon’s practice which was on the Phoenix scale of hot — it felt like one of those 118 degree days out there to me yesterday — I just thought that was the best thing for the guys, again, in order to have them ready for tonight,” Haley said, in reference to the full pads practice under the lights in St. Joe tonight.
“Part of my job is to manage these guys and keep them in a position where we feel like we’re getting all the work we need done and at the same time keep them physically ready to make it through this grind.”
Haley used his first training camp and the first part of last season to show his players just what is expected from them on a day-in day-out basis. Now that there is no question what the head coach is looking for, the team has responded with a great start to training camp — just as they did during offseason workouts — and they have been rewarded — just as they were at the end of OTAs.
We’ve been talking about it since Scott Pioli was hired last year, the most important step for a team under a new regime is for the players to “buy-in”. Again, games aren’t won in August, but it’s a great sign that Haley is convinced that his players have bought in enough to give them an early training camp reward.