No More Excuses Allowed

Photo: Justin Olson/WPI

In four football games this season, the Kansas City Chiefs haven't come to the stadium ready to play football. And under any circumstance, that's just not good enough.

On Sunday against the San Diego Chargers down 20-0 halfway through the second quarter, the Kansas City Chiefs were outclassed, outcoached and outplayed in every phase of the game.

And as this game was for all practical purposes, over in the first quarter, I'm amazed at how quickly this team, organization and fan base is disintegrating.

It's inexcusable that a team this talented team with a veteran coaching staff, can't design a game plan that can be more effective on both sides of the ball.

Offensively it might be time to bench Quarterback Matt Cassel. Through the first quarter of the season he's completed just 60% of his passes. Worse yet, he continues to stare down his receivers and locks in on receiver, Dwayne Bowe. He doesn't check off his receivers, and in both of his first half interceptions, he passed up numerous options down the field that could have resulted in first downs or better yet - something that could have yielded more points.

But all I can preach to at the moment is the fact, Cassel quite likely isn't the answer. And though his back-up, Brady Quinn, might not be any better at this point, the Chiefs might want to find out before they get into the Geno Smith Quarterback sweepstakes.

That glaring issues aside, the biggest culprit that is stalling the offense is offensive coordinator, Brian Daboll. His schemes, formations and play-calling reminds me of Jimmy Raye. He never spread out his receivers. Instead he continues to bunch them at the line of scrimmage and the Chargers defense was never challenged on the outside. His lack of creativity is mind-boggling.

He was not my first choice to run this offense but the Chiefs had trouble finding someone who was willing to work with an average quarterback. That aside, the Chiefs have plenty of talent to work with and it's being underutilized.

I'm afraid the Chiefs are getting the Cleveland Browns offensive mind versus the one that was a mastermind, with far less talent a year ago, with the Dolphins.

Sure he can't take the blame for the six offensive turnovers but at the onset of the fourth quarter, the Chiefs were still within striking distance and he was the only one in the stadium who was running his offense at snails pace.

On defense, despite horrific pass defense, the did what they could working with short field position. And outside of the play of cornerbacks, Javier Arenas and Brandon Flowers, the rest of the unit gets a failing grade.

What's troubling is the disappearance of Safety Eric Berry. He oozes talent but maybe he isn't the player we thought he was when the Chiefs drafted him 5th overall two years ago.

And forget the injury issues, he's lost his playing edge. He's simply not recognizing where he needs to be on the field in obvious passing situations.

Still I can't blame the unit too much because whenever the Chargers started possessions on their side of the 50, the Chiefs defense did their job.

So how should we look at this game?

I think it's safe to assume that at 1-3, and three games behind division leader San Diego, that the Chiefs season is on the brink of failure.

Granted the AFC West is bad. But we have to stop settling on that fact as an acceptable reason the Chiefs are 0-2 at Arrowhead and in last place in the division.

I'm not sure there's a quick fix and I don't subscribe to the fact that General Manager Scott Pioli gets the blame for this start. Instead, it really boils down to coaching.

At the moment, the Chiefs don't have enough of it and the players clearly need more of it. And until those two parties get into sync, the losses will continue to pile up - until someone takes the fall for another failed season of Chiefs football in Kansas City.

Do fans have to stop making excuses for this underachieving football team?

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