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tk13
08-30-2005, 02:14 AM
http://www.kansascity.com/mld/kansascity/sports/12511161.htm

Chiefs weigh pluses and minuses of zero

By ADAM TEICHER

The Kansas City Star


The Chiefs have had one winless preseason, and it led to a regular season only slightly better. In 2000, they lost all four exhibition games, and the season that followed was such a disaster that when it was over, they fired their head coach, Gunther Cunningham.

Nobody is predicting such grave consequences for the Chiefs if they lose their exhibition finale Friday in St. Louis and complete a winless preseason. At the same time, few want to take the chance.

“You always like to win,” coach Dick Vermeil said. “I’ve lost six in a row in the preseason before, so I know how it is to lose preseason games. I know other teams that have lost all four and had successful (regular seasons). I don’t like the idea of going 0-4 and haven’t tried to. We could’ve won the game easily the other day by throwing one complete pass there at the end with a quarterback that had been here for three days.

“You have to be very careful of overreacting to things like that in the preseason. You have to evaluate the real part of the game.”

That part is the one that matches the starters for each team. The Chiefs’ starters were competitive with their counterparts the last two weeks against Arizona and Seattle, but not in the opener in Minnesota.

They led only against the Cardinals at the point where the starters retired for the night.

By that measure, there is reason for concern. The Chiefs are showing none, at least not publicly.

“When you look at how the first unit has played, that’s really what I really kind of base it on,” quarterback Trent Green said. “The first unit has moved the ball, put up points. The first-unit defense has played well the last two games. When we’re all in there and our timing is there and our drives are coming together and we’re converting for points, that’s the most important thing.

“What happens in the second half, you’re trying to build depth. You’re trying to build confidence in the young guys.”

The Chiefs were encouraged by the first offensive drive of the game last week against the Seahawks. They drove down the field and scored a touchdown for a 7-0 lead, allowing them to accomplish many of Vermeil’s goals for the night.

“He wanted to get Will (Shields) involved, which he did,” Green said. “He wanted to get Tony Gonzalez involved, and he got the touchdown. He wanted to get some timing in the running game with Jason Dunn being back. We were able to do all of those things.”

That, in the end, is more important than a preseason victory or defeat. The Chiefs would have defeated the Seahawks anyway had any of Jonathan Quinn’s two last-minute passes into the end zone been completed.

“You never want to lose, but you’re not going to put a whole bunch into it,” guard Brian Waters said. “It’s more important that you get the job done, the techniques and the fundamentals. As you get closer to the beginning of the season, you want less mental errors, and that’s something we’re establishing now.

“Our first drive, that’s the thing we have to focus on. We’re going to be highly critical of what we do when the first team is in there. That’s what it comes down to. Those are the guys we’re going to run with through the 16 games.”

The starting defense made life miserable for Seattle running back Shaun Alexander, who rushed for just 20 yards in 11 carries. But those gains were given back when Matt Hasselbeck threw for 254 yards and two touchdowns even though he left the game halfway through the third quarter.

“We’ve still got some time,” linebacker Kawika Mitchell said. “We’ve still got some good practices to get in. We’ve still got some things we need to improve on, but by the time it comes for the Jets (in the season opener Sept. 11), we’ll be ready.”

Vermeil’s goals for Friday’s game include an improved pass defense, better pass protection from new right tackle Jordan Black and no significant injuries.

He also wouldn’t mind if the Chiefs achieved those in a game they win.

“We’re trying to get a little better each ball game, and we were definitely better (against Seattle) especially from a defensive standpoint,” he said. “I think we’re going in the right direction. We’re going to get through this game and get into the regular season and zero in on some things. I definitely think we’re going to be a better defensive football team.”

Halfcan
08-30-2005, 02:36 AM
0-4 and we haven't played, yet that is some confidence. They better bring the Gov. cup.

Good post tk would have missed it.

BigMeatballDave
08-30-2005, 02:49 AM
Who gives a shit? The Colts are currently sitting at 0-4...

Mecca
08-30-2005, 03:23 AM
I don't think anyone cares other than a few people who think preseason matters. Jumping up and down the guys you're gonna cut are better than the guys someone else is gonna cut isn't that exciting to me. Aslong as no one gets hurt, and the starters look good. I don't care about preseason wins and losses.

Amnorix
08-30-2005, 07:47 AM
Meaningless. I'll never forget one year when the Patriots were 4-0 in the preseason, and 2-14 in the regular season... It was Ehrhardt's final year -- 1981 or thereabouts.

Amnorix
08-30-2005, 07:50 AM
Oh yeah, here's another good one, the Patriots were 1-3 last year in the preseason, includign blowout losses to the Bungals (31-3) and the Jaguars (31-0).

Then we went 17-2 when the games mattered... Preseason results (in terms of W-L) are completely meaningless. Ignore them.

Mr. Kotter
08-30-2005, 07:55 AM
Oh yeah, here's another good one, the Patriots were 1-3 last year in the preseason, includign blowout losses to the Bungals (31-3) and the Jaguars (31-0).

Then we went 17-2 when the games mattered... Preseason results (in terms of W-L) are completely meaningless. Ignore them.

Yup. What he said.

Cormac
08-30-2005, 08:47 AM
FWIW, it'll be tough to win on Friday night. The Rams looked ready last night :eek:

It'd be nice to win, only to shut up those in the media who complain about 0-4.

RedDread
08-30-2005, 08:50 AM
Bad preseason losses usually show a lack of depth.


Unless you're the Lions, then you just suck no matter when the games are played.

StcChief
08-30-2005, 08:50 AM
Ignore them. Don't get anyone hurt.

But take the Governors cup home from the Lambs

Go in to 9/11 Jets game on a win.

First team playing well.

beavis
08-30-2005, 09:07 AM
Oh yeah, here's another good one, the Patriots were 1-3 last year in the preseason, includign blowout losses to the Bungals (31-3) and the Jaguars (31-0).

Then we went 17-2 when the games mattered... Preseason results (in terms of W-L) are completely meaningless. Ignore them.
Didn't you also go 4-0 the year before? Not that I disagree at all, just one of them weird things.

Amnorix
08-30-2005, 09:55 AM
Didn't you also go 4-0 the year before? Not that I disagree at all, just one of them weird things.

Off the top of my head, I want to say you're correct. I know for certain we went 4-0 either in '02 or '03. Can't remember which right now.

Hoover
08-30-2005, 10:11 AM
I think if Collins would have been healthy our Preseason Record would have been fine. Playing our 3rd string QB, or some Quinn isn't going to get any team very far.

BigRedChief
08-30-2005, 10:16 AM
only one team has ever won the Super Bowl and went 0-4 in the pre-season. Just a stat for you to mull.

Bowser
08-30-2005, 10:18 AM
only one team has ever won the Super Bowl and went 0-4 in the pre-season. Just a stat for you to mull.

Records are menat to be broken, right?

;)

Chiefs Pantalones
08-30-2005, 11:06 AM
I would like to thank Teicher for another meaningless article....

That's 400 served...

tomahawk kid
08-30-2005, 11:31 AM
He throws that 0-4 Preseason stat out ALL the time.

B_Ambuehl
08-30-2005, 11:33 AM
Bookies who keep track of this sort've thing know a very poor preseason performance rarely leads to very good regular season success.