Photo: Kirby Lee USA Today Sports
Even though the Chiefs made overtures to the Atlanta Falcons for Tight End Tony Gonzalez, the trade deadline passed without a deal and in the end perhaps making no moves was probably the best move General Manager, John Dorsey, could have made.
I’ve been watching Kansas City football my whole life. I’ve seen this team play football in every decade since they arrived in the 60‘s. But outside of the Hank Stram era, I’ve never seen a team as unified as the 2013 Chiefs.
Even though the Chiefs would have been the talk of the NFL had they been able to land Atlanta Falcons Tight End, Tony Gonzalez, there is no doubt they would have upgraded their offense.
But on the flip side, adding a future Hall of Fame player, could have impacted the chemistry of a team that’s been together since May. Yes the Chiefs did add seven players after they initially set their 53-man roster but adding anyone at this point of the season for this undefeated franchise is risky.
We don’t need to be reminded the Chiefs are 8-0 and sitting atop the AFC West. They have the games best defense, tremendous special teams and an efficient offense that can make enough plays to win games down the stretch.
Sure adding Gonzalez might have tipped the scales in regards to the Chiefs chances of winning the division this year. But one man doesn’t make the roster better. Kansas City is winning football games because to a man they’ve embraced the team moniker set forth by their Head Coach, Andy Reid.
Still every Chiefs fan wanted Gonzalez. And in the end, Falcons General Manager, Thomas Dimitroff, wasn’t willing to trade him to Kansas City. Perhaps the draft pick compensation Kansas City offered was too low. Or perhaps, the former New England Patriots Executive, held some ill will toward the Chiefs when they dumped Scott Pioli last January. After all, we know the Patriot blood is pretty thick in NFL circles.
If that’s the case, so be it. Either way it doesn’t matter any more. Gonzalez remains a Falcon and the Chiefs are getting ready to play the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
Moving ahead the Chiefs still may add players off the waiver wire. However, to date they’ve been reluctant to add anyone - partially because they want to reward the players who have been killing it since OTA’s began last May.
There’s something to be said for that line of thinking.
Loyalty is a lost art in the NFL. Players jump ship from team to team based on the theory the grass and riches are better elsewhere. While some players get jettisoned because they get injured or are perceived as too old to keep playing at a high level, some of the players loose their jobs because management makes decisions out of ego versus what’s best for the team overall.
In Kansas City though the decades, we’ve seen all that. Well that’s not the case anymore. What Head Coach, Andy Reid, and General Manager, John Dorsey, have done for this franchise has been remarkable. They resurrected this franchise from the depths of it’s worst season a year ago and have been loyal to every man on their roster.
They knew adding Gonzalez or any other big name to the roster would know doubt improve the play on the field. But what about the perception in the locker room?
Sure I’m disappointed the trade didn’t go down but this franchise is so far removed from its recent past, I’m actually glad they stood pat Tuesday.
The Chiefs began their offseason in January by cleaning house, changing the culture and ultimately jettisoning 30 players from the 53-man roster that ended the 2013 season. With that the two men at the top (Reid and Dorsey) always believed they could compete with the Denver Broncos this year.
By passing on Gonzalez, the Chiefs made it clear to the players in the locker room, they are the reason this franchise resides atop the NFL with an 8-0 record. In essence, they were rewarded for their play on the field, the sacrifices they’ve made in turning this franchise into an elite NFL team and for being loyal to one other.
The NFL isn’t about individuals. It’s about how well 53 players buy into the all for one - one for all stance that builds championship teams.
I’m not sure how it happened or why it happened but at this very moment the Chiefs are a legitimate Super Bowl contender. Even though we’re still months away from that dream game, what the brass in Kansas City did on Tuesday by passing on adding an impact player, will serve this team well as they face the toughest part of their schedule in November and December.
In other words, the Chiefs brass believes they already have the ‘Right 53’ in place to contend for a World Championship now.
WARPAINT ILLUSTRATED MESSAGE BOARDS:
Was standing pat the right move for the Chiefs?
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