The Kansas City Chiefs are now a punch line. Okay, they’ve probably been a punch line for awhile, but it’s gotten far worse now. When Scott Pioli arrived and Todd Haley came in as the coach, Brian Waters was offended when Pioli wouldn’t talk to him and Haley reportedly said 22 guys off the street could win 2 games in the NFL.
The Chiefs had won only two games in 2008, what appeared to be the low point for an organization that had not won a playoff game since Joe Montana was quarterback in January of 1994. That Chiefs team had led in 10 games, including 8 of those losses, often losing in the fourth quarter. They weren’t a good team, they were your typical bad team that could not win late with the game in the balance.
Here we are, four years later, and Pioli’s Patriot Way has resulted in a matching 1-7 start. Except, well, the Chiefs haven’t lead in regulation at any single point all year. Not a random field goal to start a game, or a touchdown to snag a temporary lead.
Now that has us back to 1929, to when the Great Depression started, to find the last team to go seven games without leading in regulation. That would be the Buffalo Bisons, who, as the joke goes, folded after the season. This isn’t a fair comparison, though, because what goes unsaid is that Buffalo went on the road and beat the Bears in game 9. This Chiefs team isn’t winning in Pittsburgh or Chicago.
So we are now at a point where 22 guys off the street can win two games, but one built by Scott Pioli cannot.
Turnovers, inept play, and absurd coaching. Scott Pioli’s abrasive style and dreadful results have him fortunate he is GM for an absentee owner.
Scott Pioli has had one draft pick make a pro bowl, Eric Berry as a rookie. His “best” draft picks through four drafts:
1. Eric Berry, S
2. Justin Houston, OLB
3. Ryan Succop, K
4. Kendrick Lewis, S
5. Tyson Jackson, DE
When Tyson Jackson is in your top five of anything, that is bad. That includes, of course, being taken in the top five of an actual NFL draft. The next year, he drafted not one, but two return men without clear roles, Dexter McCluster and Javier Arenas, in the second round. That’s a round that good GMs find starters, not waste on special teamers that aren’t good at that. Both figured prominently in last night’s loss.
Pioli’s stubbornness when it comes to sticking to Matt Cassel is also troubling. I mean, you can’t give a guy top ten money and then tell fans he is just a caretaker. The thought that Cassel was anything other than a replacement starter even based on his year in New England is amazing. He did exactly what a backup quarterback would do with that much talent, which is to say noticeably worse than a great quarterback. Cassel was more than 1.5 net yards per attempt compared to Brady the year before and after his injury.
Cassel got most of four years, and he is still the best quarterback on the roster.
As Sean Keeler points out here, three of the four worst seasons, as measured by simple rating system, have now come in Pioli’s tenure. Twenty-two bloggers off the street could perform better than that. Do we really want Pioli drafting the next quarterback and picking the next coach when he picked Romeo Crennel as his second coach, and has stuck with Cassel as his quarterback? Come on. No way.
What a joke. Shut ‘em down.
[depressing photo via US Presswire, even more depressing screen shot from the Sports Hernia]