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Douche Baggins
12-01-2007, 10:07 PM
http://www.kansascity.com/sports/chiefs/story/385724.html

KC owes Peterson a lot, but it’s time for him to go

This is about why the Chiefs need to move on, why they need to hire a new general manager at the end of this season, but I don’t want it to sound like just another bash Carl Peterson rant. He deserves more than that. Peterson has been good for Kansas City.

He has, more than any politician, more than any business leader, changed the landscape of this town. He made the Kansas City Chiefs winners. He made Arrowhead Stadium the one place in town where so many people — across every line of race, age and class — gather together. He has made the Arrowhead Stadium parking lot one of the great barbecue pits on planet Earth. He put it into players’ contracts that they have to be a part of this community, they have to make a minimum five charitable appearances a year, and so, over the years, the Chiefs’ players have done a whole lot of good.

People generally don’t want to hear that stuff or anything else good about Carl Peterson. The Chiefs have not won a playoff game since January 1994. They are having a miserable season. It’s an easy column to write now, to say that the Chiefs need a new GM, to say that it’s time for Peterson to give up football powers — few will disagree with that. You probably just want this column to quit all the hemming, hawing and just say that the Chiefs need to fire the son of a gun already.

I still feel the need to defend him. He’s done a lot for this town.

But yeah, the time has come to do something.

•••

When it comes to Carl Peterson, there are no undecided voters. If there were an election of Kansas Citians to decide whether to keep or sack Peterson as general manager of the Chiefs — sort of the way they do things in European soccer — you can bet the turnout would be overwhelming enough to make everyone proud of democracy.

And you can also bet which way that vote would go.

Yes, everyone knows exactly how to feel about Peterson. It’s been a long and eventful marriage. Nineteen years long. There is too much history, too many memories, too many close calls, too many shattered hopes, too many ticket price hikes. He’s been general manager of the Chiefs since December 1988 — he entered office before the first George Bush, before students protested in Tiananmen Square, before Seinfeld appeared on television, before Michelle Wie, Lil’ Romeo or Michael Beasley were born. Needless to say, he’s been general manager years longer than anyone else in the NFL.

In fact, Peterson has been in Kansas City for so long that there are two very distinct Carl Peterson eras. General managers in any sport don’t often last long enough to have more than one era, but Peterson is an exception to all the rules. The dividing point of his career is very clear — it happened on Jan. 5, 1998. Almost 10 years ago.

That was one day after the Chiefs lost to Denver in the playoffs.

To give you an idea how long ago that was — and keep in mind that Peterson was already GM for nine full seasons by that date — there are only three other general managers in the NFL who have been with their teams going back to 1998. They are Dallas’ Jerry Jones, Oakland’s Al Davis and Cincinnati’s Mike Brown. They also have the unique advantage of owning their teams, which can do wonders for job security.

Anyway, on Jan. 5, 1998, Carl Peterson was an NFL icon. People around town were mad at him, perhaps, because the Chiefs had lost in the playoffs again, another heartbreak, but realistically it was tough to bash the man’s record. Peterson had taken over the Chiefs when they were a punch line, a relocation candidate, among the worst franchises in pro sports. They had made the playoffs once in 17 years, they had hired and fired five coaches over that time, Arrowhead Stadium was typically half-empty (or half-full, depending on your own view of the world).

Things were so bad that when NFL Films came to town to film games, they only took low-angle shots so not to show the barren upper deck.

Carl Peterson changed all that. Longtime Chiefs fans are rolling their eyes right now — they have heard this tale too many times already — but it’s a huge part of the story. Peterson hired an established coach, Marty Schottenheimer, and he drafted a pass-rushing dynamo named Derrick Thomas, and he opened up the parking lots for tailgating, and a few years later he even traded for the NFL’s most iconic player, Joe Montana. The Chiefs started winning, and they started going to the playoffs every year, and the stadium filled to the point of overflowing.

At one point, the Chiefs’ season-ticket waiting list number was rumored to be 50,000, which would mean the Chiefs had more people on their waiting list than many NFL teams had actual season-ticket holders. For a metro area that ranks 30th or so in America, this was pretty much miraculous.

This is not to say that everyone in Kansas City liked Carl Peterson. He can be gruff and defensive, and he can come across as mean-spirited — “I know some people think I’m an ogre,” he says — and that probably bothered him some. In the end, though, he did not think it was his job to be liked. His team won games and sold out stadiums.

Something changed after that Denver loss, though. It really began with Schottenheimer, who probably took more of the blame for the playoff losses. Marty lost his way. He started asking friends how he should change in order to win big games. And he did change. The Chiefs’ whole direction changed. Schottenheimer started babbling about how the offense had to gain “chunks of yards.” Peterson went out and signed troubled characters such as Bam Morris and big-name underachievers such as Chester McGlockton. A new kind of arrogance surrounded the Chiefs.

The result was disastrous. In 1998, the Chiefs had their first losing record under Peterson. That was just the start of the pain. The players made national fools of themselves by losing control on “Monday Night Football.” Scandal rocked the team seemingly every other day. There were arrests. Schottenheimer resigned at the end of the season.

And that started a second, less-enjoyable Carl Peterson era.

•••

Take a look at this: During 1989-1997, the Chiefs made the playoffs seven times and never had a losing record. They had one coach — Schottenheimer — and a firm identity. They even won three playoff games.

OK, now look at this: During 1998-2007, that’s 10 seasons, the Chiefs:

•Have had losing records four times (and this year could make five).

•Have made the playoffs just twice (and, of course, have not won a playoff game).

•Have had four different coaches.

•Have gone from a defensive team to an offensive team back to a defensive team.

•Have a not-so-impressive 10-year record of 80-75.

What has happened? A lot of things. You can start with the draft. People pick at Peterson’s draft record, but the truth is Peterson v1.0 drafted quite well. He picked seven Pro Bowlers during 1989 to 1997, including potential Hall of Famers Derrick Thomas, Will Shields and Tony Gonzalez. From 1998 on, he has drafted one Pro Bowler — Larry Johnson — and the drafts between 1998 and 2002 were almost total busts.

The reason seems to be that Peterson — and the Chiefs — keep changing. The thing that made the early Peterson years successful was the stability of the Chiefs; nothing much ever changed. The Chiefs were a certain kind of team, and they went after certain kinds of players, and they coached them a certain way. It was all very, you know, certain.

But the last 10 years, the winds have shifted so many times that no one is quite sure where to turn. In 2000, for instance, the Chiefs took receiver Sylvester Morris in the first round because he was big, and coach Gunther Cunningham loved big receivers. They could go over defenders. They could gain yards after the catch. Morris had a reasonable rookie season, including a three-touchdown game.

Then Cunningham was fired, Dick Vermeil and offensive coordinator Al Saunders came in, and they didn’t want big receivers. They wanted small, quick guys who could get in and out of their cuts. Morris was battling injuries anyway, but it wouldn’t have mattered. He never played a single game for Vermeil.

Then Vermeil retired, Saunders moved on, and, guess what? Coach Herm Edwards likes big receivers again — so the Chiefs drafted Dwayne Bowe, who is having a nice year and looks like he has a great future, assuming a new coach doesn’t come in.

This is only one example, but it’s telling: This is why temperamental teams lose. The Arizona Cardinals have changed directions so many times that their logo should be a compass. And the Arizona Cardinals lose every year.

Peterson has never been able to get back the solidity and sense of purpose he had with Schottenheimer. There have been a couple of pretty good years here and there, but more bad years in recent times. It’s hard to win in the NFL under the best of circumstances. It’s darned near impossible when you are changing the blueprint every other year.

Then again, it’s also understandable. Peterson was in his early 40s when he took over the Chiefs. He had all the time in the world. He’s in his 60s now. He wants to win a Super Bowl. Sure, he wants it for the Hunt family. He wants it for Kansas City, too. But he also wants it for himself. It is the one missing piece of his career. And time runs out. He has put so much of his life into this team, this town, this dream; how can he start over now? He can’t. No, better to change coordinators, add a free agent, go with a veteran quarterback, try to squeeze one more year out of an aging player.

This is why, finally, the Chiefs need a new direction. The Chiefs are done squeezing — there’s no toothpaste left in the tube. They have gotten everything than can out of the past. The Chiefs already made this mistake once, in the early 1970s, when Hank Stram did not have the heart to cut ties with those great players who took the Chiefs to two Super Bowls. The Chiefs got old, then ancient, then Stram was fired and the Chiefs went on a long stretch of losing.

Chiefs owner Clark Hunt cannot let that happen. He seems to understand this. The Chiefs are starting over; they have no choice. Fan interest is dwindling (for the first time since I can remember, the Chiefs are actually advertising the virtues of the opposing team, the way the Royals have for years). This team is half too young and half too old, which is bad place to be. The Chiefs need a bold new direction now.

Is Carl Peterson capable of providing that? A bold new direction? No.

Unlike many, I don’t think this is Peterson’s fault. It’s just the natural progression of time. The job of NFL GM isn’t meant to be long-term. After a while, no matter how much good you may have done, people will blame you for things that are just beyond your control and dislike you for habits that you can’t do anything about.

In any case, it’s impossible to fire someone kindly. The harder you try, the worse it sounds. It would be great if Peterson could stay in Kansas City to see through the stadium renovations and run the business operations; I don’t know how he’d feel about that. But one way or another, the Chiefs need to set a new football course. It’s kind of like the song says: Those days are gone forever. They should just let them go.

cdcox
12-01-2007, 10:09 PM
Wow. He lost Jo-Po. That's huge.

siberian khatru
12-01-2007, 10:11 PM
This has ChiefsPlanet written all over it.

Not saying JoPo reads our stuff, just that we've said all these things ad nauseam. Glad to see it finally seep out beyond our world.

dirk digler
12-01-2007, 10:13 PM
:bravo:

:bravo:

:bravo:

RustShack
12-01-2007, 10:14 PM
He should stay as the CEO, but he needs to let someone else be the GM. I know the odds of that happening are slim to none, but that would be the best way in my opinion.

Ari ümlaüt
12-01-2007, 10:19 PM
this is why I am wearing a bag over my head tomorrow.

Carl, there’s no toothpaste left in the tube.

Fruit Ninja
12-01-2007, 10:20 PM
Its a great article. JoPo tried to be as nice as possible, but in the end, its hit the road jack.

cdcox
12-01-2007, 10:21 PM
He should stay as the CEO, but he needs to let someone else be the GM. I know the odds of that happening are slim to none, but that would be the best way in my opinion.

Well, that is basically the plan when Carl's contract finally runs out. If we could just move up the time table a few years, and prevent him from having any influence over the selection process for the next GM.

C-Mac
12-01-2007, 10:24 PM
Wow...what a well written article and ending with a Don Henly quote.

:bravo:

siberian khatru
12-01-2007, 10:30 PM
Well, that is basically the plan when Carl's contract finally runs out. If we could just move up the time table a few years, and prevent him from having any influence over the selection process for the next GM.

Denny Thum, come on down!

Cochise
12-01-2007, 10:30 PM
He did plenty of things right. He brought the franchise back to respectability. But we need someone who can take the next step.

the Talking Can
12-01-2007, 10:31 PM
he needed to go a decade ago, as hindsight and jopo make clear...

and anywhere else he would have been fired

siberian khatru
12-01-2007, 10:32 PM
You know one thing Carl should get credit for that I haven't read about in a long time?

When he first got here, didn't he invite a lot of movers and shakers in KC to Arrowhead, where he sat them on the field at fancy tables and gave them a big pep talk about investing in the future of the Chiefs? It really made an impression, IIRC, and helped stir up corporate interest in the team. The message was like: We're gonna be a class organization now, run professionally.

Anybody remember that?

KCChiefsFan88
12-01-2007, 10:52 PM
Good to see the KC Star FINALLY begin to turn the heat up on Dictator Carl (besides Whitlock)

Coach
12-01-2007, 10:53 PM
You know one thing Carl should get credit for that I haven't read about in a long time?

When he first got here, didn't he invite a lot of movers and shakers in KC to Arrowhead, where he sat them on the field at fancy tables and gave them a big pep talk about investing in the future of the Chiefs? It really made an impression, IIRC, and helped stir up corporate interest in the team. The message was like: We're gonna be a class organization now, run professionally.

Anybody remember that?

Yeah, it used to be. Now, it doesn't seem to be running in a professional manner, let alone, a business manner anymore.

Buehler445
12-01-2007, 11:02 PM
That was a hell of a good article. That is a lot more rational than the "Carl is the root of all evil." stuff we get.

blueballs
12-01-2007, 11:05 PM
So Carl without Marty is like
Dante without Randy or
something like that

Rain Man
12-01-2007, 11:13 PM
This is possibly the best article ever written about the Kansas City Chiefs. How do I nominate this for a Pulitzer Prize?

Cochise
12-01-2007, 11:22 PM
That was a hell of a good article. That is a lot more rational than the "Carl is the root of all evil." stuff we get.

If we want to have an honest discussion, we have to first rid ourselves of "Carl only cares about money." People aren't going to take you seriously with that. The "CARL IS DE DEBBIL" faction makes reasonable people who want change look like tards by association.

Carl does care about money. He might even think, crazy as it sounds, that the purpose of a team is to make money. But come on, I don't think anyone can honestly tell themselves he doesn't want to win. Carl does want to win. I'm sure he desperately wants to win a Super Bowl. If you think he just cares about money, how much money would that bring in?

He wants to win. He just has had plenty of time to prove he knows how, and he hasn't done it. It's someone else's turn, and it's long overdue.

ChiefsCountry
12-01-2007, 11:30 PM
Wow that was a great article JoPo showed why he is a top notch columinst.

blueballs
12-01-2007, 11:31 PM
The Chiefs need to get younger
and not just on the players

Logical
12-01-2007, 11:58 PM
I am just sure my new Avatar was the key. Really good article for a change.

Mr. Flopnuts
12-02-2007, 12:20 AM
this is why I am wearing a bag over my head tomorrow.

Carl, there’s no toothpaste left in the tube.



I hope you're serious about wearing the bag over your head. I swear to God if I was there, I would do it too. This article was great. It's time for Carl to move on. I'm grateful that he took my Chiefs out of the gutter, but I don't want him sticking around just long enough to leave them how he found them. It's best for everyone if Carl moves on to another front office position, or better yet, on to another team.

BigRedChief
12-02-2007, 08:45 AM
Wow that was a great article JoPo showed why he is a top notch columinst.JOPO comes over to the light!:rockon:

Phobia
12-02-2007, 08:53 AM
If we want to have an honest discussion, we have to first rid ourselves of "Carl only cares about money." People aren't going to take you seriously with that. The "CARL IS DE DEBBIL" faction makes reasonable people who want change look like tards by association.

Carl does care about money. He might even think, crazy as it sounds, that the purpose of a team is to make money. But come on, I don't think anyone can honestly tell themselves he doesn't want to win. Carl does want to win. I'm sure he desperately wants to win a Super Bowl. If you think he just cares about money, how much money would that bring in?

He wants to win. He just has had plenty of time to prove he knows how, and he hasn't done it. It's someone else's turn, and it's long overdue.
No kidding. I've been (trying to) make this argument for years. You just said it more eloquently.

BigRedChief
12-02-2007, 08:54 AM
If we want to have an honest discussion, we have to first rid ourselves of "Carl only cares about money." People aren't going to take you seriously with that. The "CARL IS DE DEBBIL" faction makes reasonable people who want change look like tards by association.

Carl does care about money. He might even think, crazy as it sounds, that the purpose of a team is to make money. But come on, I don't think anyone can honestly tell themselves he doesn't want to win. Carl does want to win. I'm sure he desperately wants to win a Super Bowl. If you think he just cares about money, how much money would that bring in?

He wants to win. He just has had plenty of time to prove he knows how, and he hasn't done it. It's someone else's turn, and it's long overdue.I agree. King Carl does want to win. It's not all about the money. He's has had his chance and it's time to move on.

I believe there is and should be a conflict between being a GM and CEO. One should be caring about the money and making it for the owner. The GM's focus should be on the football field.

King Carl is owed a great and hearty thank you for restoring this franchise to it's proud place among the NFL teams.

In a recent national article we were named one of the 3 stooges of the NFL. King Carl, it's time to move on.

scott free
12-02-2007, 08:56 AM
That was a hell of a good article. That is a lot more rational than the "Carl is the root of all evil." stuff we get.

No doubt.

Reerun_KC
12-02-2007, 08:59 AM
It will be like Christmas when Carl, his cronies and the quest for mediocrity is completely removed from Arrowhead.

It is past time for the Hunts to insert the douche nozzle and squeeze!

Time for new life, blood, plan and direction for this organization. Go get someone from a successful tree for a GM then Coach.. Time to stay away from the Carl and Marty shrub...

blueballs
12-02-2007, 09:01 AM
Karma says
after all the bitching
When Carl leaves it will get 10x worse

Skip Towne
12-02-2007, 09:14 AM
Somebody needs to put a For Sale sign in Carl's front yard.

ChiefsFan4Life
12-02-2007, 09:27 AM
Excellent article, couldn't agree more

Zouk
12-02-2007, 09:30 AM
2 years too late. The time to write this was when he was was drafting Ryan Sims, Junior Siavii, and Eric Downing and giving huge signing bonuses to Kendrell Bell, Pat Surtain, and Greg Wesley.

I'm fine with removing Carl only if Kuharick and Herm get to finish the re-build they're only halfway through executing. To start over again at this point would be Lions/Cardinals-level stupid (as the article itself implicitly points out).

Dave Lane
12-02-2007, 09:33 AM
He should stay as the CEO, but he needs to let someone else be the GM. I know the odds of that happening are slim to none, but that would be the best way in my opinion.


Actually he should stay as president and give up the GM role. He's already both. Clark Hunt is CEO and should stay there. We just need a young dynamic GM ala Dayton Moore for the Royals to come in with new ideas and contacts.

Dave

BigRedChief
12-02-2007, 09:36 AM
Actually he should stay as president and give up the GM role. He's already both. Clark Hunt is CEO and should stay there. We just need a young dynamic GM ala Dayton Moore for the Royals to come in with new ideas and contacts.

Dave
I'd be happy with that. Let King Carl do what he does best, make money and marketing.

HC_Chief
12-02-2007, 09:38 AM
I'd be happy with that. Let King Carl do what he does best, make money and marketing.

I third the motion.

Adept Havelock
12-02-2007, 09:49 AM
Nicely done, JoPo. :clap:

Extra Point
12-02-2007, 10:56 AM
JoPo finally did it. He only left out the footnote citing the concensus of the Planet.

shaneo69
12-02-2007, 11:16 AM
Actually he should stay as president and give up the GM role. He's already both. Clark Hunt is CEO and should stay there. We just need a young dynamic GM ala Dayton Moore for the Royals to come in with new ideas and contacts.

Dave

I don't want Peterson employed by the Chiefs in any capacity. And Thum, Kuharich, Bob Moore, and Pete Moris need to go as well.

Don't go away mad, just go away.

Wilson
12-02-2007, 11:40 AM
I've waited a long time to open up the star and see this article.

blueballs
12-02-2007, 02:43 PM
Carl must go

KCJohnny
12-02-2007, 02:48 PM
Let him read about it (getting fired) on the internet.

chiefsfan1963
12-02-2007, 02:51 PM
As usual I'm way ahead of everyone on this topic.

ROFL ROFL ROFL ROFL

BigRedChief
12-03-2007, 04:56 AM
I don't want Peterson employed by the Chiefs in any capacity. And Thum, Kuharich, Bob Moore, and Pete Moris need to go as well.

Don't go away mad, just go away.
Yep, hit the road and take Jack with you.
http://media.truerwords.net/images/cycling/SCC-2002/Scenic%20Road%202-S.JPG

a1na2
12-03-2007, 05:46 AM
I agree. King Carl does want to win. It's not all about the money. He's has had his chance and it's time to move on.

I believe there is and should be a conflict between being a GM and CEO. One should be caring about the money and making it for the owner. The GM's focus should be on the football field.

King Carl is owed a great and hearty thank you for restoring this franchise to it's proud place among the NFL teams.

In a recent national article we were named one of the 3 stooges of the NFL. King Carl, it's time to move on.

I'm sure that article was devoid of any bias against Carl Peterson. Our bigger problem at the moment is not Carl Peterson, it is Herman Edwards. 'the Hermit' is one of the crappiest hc's in the league, now and in the past.

Carl Peterson is a facilitator, he gets the players that the current HC wants.

Carl's only great failure is those that he has recommended to the head shed for the hc position. he failed with Gunther as well as with 'the Hermit'.

BigRedChief
12-03-2007, 06:42 AM
Our bigger problem at the moment is not Carl Peterson, it is Herman Edwards.
I disagree. King Carl is the reason our OL sucks so bad.

If King Carl doesn't blow those 4 first and second round picks on DT's. And FA money on DT's twice. We could have used those picks or FA money on the OL.

King Carl and his cronnies are the major problem plaguing the Chiefs.

Chiefnj2
12-03-2007, 07:51 AM
I feel sorry for the next GM and head coach.

Mecca
12-03-2007, 07:53 AM
I feel sorry for the next GM and head coach.

You need to elaborate on that.....unless it's Thum or Kuharick or any of other Carl's cronies then those guys will get torn apart.

Chiefnj2
12-03-2007, 08:02 AM
You need to elaborate on that.....unless it's Thum or Kuharick or any of other Carl's cronies then those guys will get torn apart.

Carl has overstayed his welcome by about 9 -10 years. People are sick and tired of the team not taking the next step. Even if someone new comes in people will want immediate results. They will want every draft pick to pan out immediately, every free agent to make an impact and immediate coaching results.

By most accounts it takes a head coach 3 years to put his stamp on a team. Herm has had 1 1/2 years and now 90% want him gone.

Crony or not, people say they want change, but can't deal with the growing pains that accompany it.

If Clarke fired Peterson and the new GM came in and cleared house, the team would be a mess for the next 2 years as the new coach clears out the old, gets his new guys in and impliments his own system. People say that's what they want but as soon as the team loses a few games or hits some speed bumps the majority will bitch and moan.

Mecca
12-03-2007, 08:17 AM
Well I bitch for other reasons, I understand all that. I don't trust Herm or Carl at all just based on their histories...

Especially Peterson, I still feel this is a halfass rebuilding process that won't work because it isn't done right. We have a head coach that is a moron that doesn't understand many things...he's been proving it for years now.

I'm not bitching about Herm cause the team sucks, I know it lacks talent. I'm bitching because even with a lack of talent he is still making retarded decisions.

thehead
12-03-2007, 08:19 AM
its not that Chiefs fans cant stand to lose with a rebuilding effort its the fact they did not state Rebuilding was under way until Horrid looked like the true 3rd stringer he is , so now we are rebuilding. I am ready for a change we just need a competent captain to lead the charge not Fu#cking chicking shit Herm Edwards

Pushead2
12-03-2007, 08:19 AM
Why can't we for once take a shot on a new coach, not recycled ones.

MahiMike
12-03-2007, 10:25 AM
Finally! A writer other than Whitlock calling out King Carl. The end of his tyranny is finally upon us!

Rausch
12-03-2007, 11:17 AM
Finally! A writer other than Whitlock calling out King Carl. The end of his tyranny is finally upon us!

Not likely...

luv
12-03-2007, 11:23 AM
It was so friggin' hilarious to be there when he got booed yesterday.