Chiefs vs. Broncos – The Game Of The Decade

Thursday night, I wasn't in the mood to celebrate a happy new year. As the ball dropped in Times Square, all I could ponder was our Chiefs, and how far they've fallen this decade.

Five, four, three, two, one – the Chiefs stink.

The year 2010 has a ring of significance and progress to it. Fifty years ago, people expected we'd be commuting in flying cars by now. While that didn't come to pass, the advancements of society in the last 10 years can't be ignored. A decade ago, I had no cell phone, watched the Chiefs in standard definition on a 24-inch screen, and rarely communicated with anyone on the internet, let alone Chiefs fans. Warpaint Illustrated didn't even exist. Truly, we were living in comparative dark ages.

Things have changed, and things will keep changing, for the better. You can almost hear a song playing:

It's the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine.

Unfortunately, the Chiefs haven't mirrored society's progress over the last decade. What they have done is completely change our perception of them. How we define the Kansas City Chiefs has changed. Once the heartbeat of Kansas City and a Mecca of might in the Midwest, the Chiefs used to be a magnet for football passion. Now, they are perennial losers and a magnet for apathy and derision.

The franchise has been altered at the very core of its being. What has been lost can't be recovered easily. The Chiefs underwent reconstructive surgery and the doctors horribly botched the job. Twice.

It's the end of the Chiefs as we knew ‘em. And I feel sick.

Don't think it's quite that bad? The Chiefs have already set a franchise record this season for negative point differential (-150), which sounds bad, but is even worse when you realize they're breaking the record that was set a year ago.

Naturally, it only follows that the Chiefs will finish in the AFC West cellar for the third consecutive season after Sunday's game against the Broncos. It's happened only once previously in the 50-year history of the franchise, but in that three-year period the Chiefs won 13 games. Right now they're sitting on nine wins in three years. From the 50, anything is possible. How fitting!

Once, twice, three times a loser. The Chiefs are ugly as they've never been before. Even Arrowhead Stadium is sitting around these days with a half-finished rhinoplasty. Carl, Gunther, Dick, Herm and now Scott and Todd: you botched the job. The Chiefs are hideous.

Just how hideous depends on the game with Denver. If you thought the AFC West Losers Threepeat was bad, just wait. It gets worse, and it's purely based on the numbers. There's no emotion or opinion in this scar.

Forget the death of Derrick Thomas, two embarrassing playoff defeats and the first blackout in 20 years. If the Chiefs don't beat the Broncos, they will cement the last decade as the worst in the history of the Kansas City Chiefs. Without a win in Denver, the last 10 years will have featured Kansas City's lowest winning percentage.

It's that close. The Chiefs are 69-90 since 2000, sitting them at an already-pathetic .4339. If you're counting at home, that's better than the Oakland Raiders, but not by much, especially considering a few miraculous, last-minute finishes are all that separate the two teams if you really want to get specific.

Unfortunately, the 1980s Chiefs, even with their half-empty stadiums and sack-faced fans, have already bested our new-millennium (Fail-lennium?) Chiefs. Even with a win over Denver, the 80s Chiefs' lofty mark of .440 can't be reached. We could round up, but Christmas is over.

Obviously the Apathetic Aughts Chiefs can't compete with the juggernaut 90s Chiefs or, heaven forbid, the Super Bowl teams of the 60s. So it comes down to the 70s squad, who started strong, with four straight winning seasons, but went into a nosedive thereafter.

Hank Stram, Paul Wiggin, Tom Bettis and Marv Levy put together enough bad teams in that decade to compile a sparkling 60-79-5 record. That sits the bell-bottomed, disco-dancing Chiefs at .434.

After a 69-90 start over the last decade, Kansas City ends up .437 with a win over the Broncos. A loss, and they fall to .431.

Oh, by the way, the Chiefs have never won a game inside Invesco Field at Mile High, the site of Sunday's game.

Chiefs vs. Broncos. The Game Of The Decade, commemorated quite fittingly by the AFL's 50th Anniversary.

The race for the worst decade in Chiefs' history is on. It's Carl Peterson, Gunther Cunningham, Dick Vermeil, Herm Edwards, Scott Pioli and Todd Haley against Jack Steadman, Hank Stram, Paul Wiggin, Tom Bettis and Marv Levy. It'll be a photo finish by an ugly nose.

Whoever wins, we lose.

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