Chiefs Name Damon Huard Starter

Jamie Squire - Getty

Two weeks from today the Kansas City Chiefs will line up in Houston against the Texans with a new starting quarterback. The one everyone thought would be leading the offense - Brodie Croyle - will have to wait for another Sunday to get his shot. Head coach Herman Edwards declared Damon Huard the starter on Saturday.

The 11-year veteran will get his first opening-day starting assignment after spending the last four seasons as a backup with the Chiefs.

Last year Huard led the Chiefs to a 5-3 record in eight relief appearances of Trent Green. This offseason, Edwards led the charge to retain Huard because he knew if Croyle struggled – as he has in the preseason – his team would need a seasoned quarterback ready to start the season.

Huard fits the bill, and even though some felt that Croyle was the leading candidate, Edwards probably felt he had little to choice but to go with the veteran. It makes sense when you consider the fact the Chiefs play three of four games on the road to open the season.

With Croyle serving up one interception in each of his three preseason games, and Huard limited by a calf injury, Edwards' call is a risky one either way.

How Croyle deals with this adversity could ultimately determine if he's the starting quarterback down the road.

After practice Saturday, Croyle was disappointed but remained upbeat.

"Obviously I came in wanting to be the starter, but it didn't work out that way," he said. "When I get my chance, I'll have to make the most of it."

Edwards still maintains that Croyle is part of the mix.

"Brodie Croyle has a great future for us and one day will be the starting quarterback for this football team," he said. "It's not opening day obviously. He did some thing from the previous year that shows he's gotten better. You can see a lot of flashes and a lot of potential in the guy, but it's all about winning. It's about winning now, regardless of what people say. Going on the road opening day Damon gives us our best opportunity to do it."

And that's what this decision was really all about. In the NFL, winning is everything, and Huard gives the Chiefs the best option to win in Houston.

By going in this direction Edwards puts a lot on the line for his football team. With youth serving as the key component toward changing the face of this franchise, Huard's success is mandatory if the Chiefs want to make the playoffs for the second consecutive year.

If he struggles, then Croyle will have to shake off the after effects of being second fiddle when he gets his chance to lead this football team.

But something tells me he'll be ready when and if his number is called early on this season.

"Whenever they feel that I'm ready," said Croyle, "we'll go with it."

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