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DaWolf
10-25-2009, 06:12 PM
Column: Where Is This Team Going? (http://www.bobgretz.com/chiefs-football/column-where-is-this-team-going.html)
October 25, 2009 - Bob Gretz

From Arrowhead Stadium

Have you ever taken a novice driver out and tried to teach them how to operate a moving vehicle?

If you have, then the herky, jerky nature of the 2009 Chiefs season is familiar.

Last week, the Chiefs did the equivalent of driving on the highway, staying in their lane and exiting properly. Then Sunday at Arrowhead, the Chiefs drove off the road, into the other lane, crashed into a bridge abutment and dented every side of the car.

Right now, the tow truck is waiting to haul this team away. The question is, where does it go? Just what direction is the team headed for over the final nine games of the ‘09 season?

When a team loses by 30 points at home to a division rival, it’s pretty darn hard to pinpoint one play or situation that decided the game. There were many moments in the Chiefs-Chargers battle where the guys with the lightning bolts showed beyond a shadow of a doubt they were the better team.

They were helped by the Chiefs, and especially their head coach.

Todd Haley is a novice head coach, having never led a football team at any level. He has just seven games under his belt and it showed on Sunday when he made several decisions that really hurt his football team.

The first one came early, when the Chiefs faced fourth-and-one at their own 41-yard line. San Diego led 7-0 at the time and at this point the game was still in doubt. The smart move would have been to punt the ball, cover the kick, or even bang it into the end zone for a touchback. That would have given the Chargers offense the ball at the 20-yard line.

Haley decided to go for a first down. QB Matt Cassel tried a quarterback sneak that didn’t gain an inch, let alone a yard. The Chargers had the ball inside the 50-yard line and it took them eight plays to move those 41 yards for a touchdown and a 14-0 lead that ended any thoughts the Chiefs had of being part of this game.

“It’s a yard,” said Haley about his decision. “Would I like to have that one back? I might. We gave them a short field.

“I was aggressive minded. It was a play we practiced. Your mindset is you are trying to score a touchdown.”

Funny thing about practice – sometimes how a team performs during the week of preparation has nothing to do with what happens on Sunday. Haley said it was one of the team’s best weeks of practice. In fact he called Friday’s workout the best of the season.

“We were excited to get to the game,” Haley said. “We got our butts kicked across the board.”

It’s never good when a team contributes to its own butt-kicking and that’s what Haley’s decision did.

There was another curious coaching moment at the end of the first half. San Diego led 17-0, but the Chiefs put together their best possession of the first half, moving the ball inside Chargers territory. A long pass to the end zone from Cassel to new WR Lance Long didn’t work out, as Long could not hold onto the ball. Facing third-and-three at the San Diego 26-yard line, Haley called a shovel pass that went from Cassel to RB Jamaal Charles for one-yard.

Facing fourth-and two at the 25-yard line, the smart move is to let the play clock run down to three seconds and then call a timeout. Then, you send the kicker out to try a 43 or 44-yard field goal. Under this scenario, there would be less than 30 seconds left.

But the Chiefs weren’t sure what they wanted to do on the play. Haley admits he wanted to go for the first down. Somebody was talking in his ear, telling him to go for the field goal. With the clock at 1:11, the Chiefs called timeout, keeping a good 20 to 25 extra seconds on the clock for the Chargers.

Ryan Succop missed the 43-yard FG, but the Chargers had the ball at their own 34-yard line and 67 seconds left. They used 66 seconds to set up a 39-yard field goal that gave them a 20-0 half-time lead.

If the Chiefs chew up that game clock time and if Succop hits the FG, it’s a 17-3 game at half-time.

“If I had known for sure I was going to kick the ball, I probably would have held that and used 20 more second or whatever I could have used,” Haley said. “I was talked out of going for it on fourth down.

“We knew had deferred (on the coin toss) and you know you are going to get the football. I thought we needed three points bad. It was a letdown. Lance Long had a chance to make a play. It was great effort but he didn’t come up with it. It was disappointing to the end of the half we allowed them to go down the field.”

It was not a good day for the young head coach. Haley is now 1-6 on the season and his team showed again on this Sunday that they are far from a proven product. The numbers scream bad football: 203 total offensive yards, just 82 net passing yards, four sacks given up, three interceptions, seven penalties, no takeaways, no sacks, a half-dozen major yardage plays allowed, a punt was blocked and untold mental mistakes.

With the bye week coming up, the Chiefs will have time to practice. But just what do they do? Where do they go from here?

“We’ve got to be better than that,” Haley said in the coaching understatement of the day.

If what we saw Sunday was the direction this team will take, then the final nine games of this season are going to be uglier than what we saw against the Chargers.

chiefs1111
10-25-2009, 06:16 PM
Down the Toilet thats where

orange
10-25-2009, 06:20 PM
With the bye week coming up, the Chiefs will have time to practice. But just what do they do? Where do they go from here?




http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_ETe9gpUnixc/RmDlUiQEotI/AAAAAAAAABI/iFRT-7dUHy8/s320/large_ChanVol3Box.jpg

Noss
10-25-2009, 06:22 PM
Down the Toilet thats where

So sad but true. :doh!:

cdcox
10-25-2009, 06:28 PM
Erase Haley's coaching blunders, erase Cassel's picks, erase the blocked punt, and we still lose.

Hoover
10-25-2009, 06:30 PM
I started planning my draft day party during the game...

Mojo Jojo
10-25-2009, 06:32 PM
If Friday was the best of the season, and this was the result; how bad is it going to get with an additional week of work?

Reaper16
10-25-2009, 06:33 PM
Its going down, down in an earlier round and sugar its going down swinging. They'll be our number one with a bullet. A loaded-gun complex -- cock it and pull it.

Nero's Neptune
10-25-2009, 06:36 PM
Haley didn't lose this game for the Chiefs.... better coaching decisions would have helped, but they were outplayed pretty badly from start to finish.

It's an odd angle for Gretz to take.... highlighting Haley's errors....when the team played like total crap. He never criticized Herm this badly... when he certainly deserved it.

Once again an example of a jouralist that allows their personal feelings about people to influence what they write.

milkman
10-25-2009, 06:43 PM
Haley didn't lose this game for the Chiefs.... better coaching decisions would have helped, but they were outplayed pretty badly from start to finish.

It's an odd angle for Gretz to take.... highlighting Haley's errors....when the team played like total crap. He never criticized Herm this badly... when he certainly deserved it.

Once again an example of a jouralist that allows their personal feelings about people to influence what they write.

Gretz was employed by the Chiefs until this new regime took over.

He couldn't bite the hand that fed him.

Coach
10-25-2009, 06:45 PM
Down in the fucking drain, that's where it's fucking going.

The whole fucking team needs to donate their fucking weekly check to the Kansas City Mercy Hospital, and that includes the fucking so-called coaching staff, becuase NONE of them deserves a goddamn cent of it. This team is fucking soft.

Fucking disgraceful.

Raised On Riots
10-25-2009, 07:06 PM
Its going down, down in an earlier round and sugar its going down swinging. They'll be our number one with a bullet. A loaded-gun complex -- cock it and pull it.

I hate that fucking song.

Tuckdaddy
10-25-2009, 07:36 PM
Players win games not coaches. No coach could win with what we have.

DBOSHO
10-25-2009, 07:48 PM
Its going down, down in an earlier round and sugar its going down swinging. They'll be our number one with a bullet. A loaded-gun complex -- cock it and pull it.

Just an FWI, its loaded "god" complex.

I know it doesnt make sense, but the band even confirmed it.

But still, we should blow our brains out

blazzin311
10-25-2009, 08:09 PM
Players win games not coaches. No coach could win with what we have.

This! :clap:

KCDC
10-25-2009, 08:52 PM
It is hard to see any reason for hope any time soon. This will be a decade long project, I fear. No, I don't miss Herm. He's the one that set us back 5 years.

I actually liked the gutsy play calling on 4th down. It it had worked, he would be the genious field general. When you are playing a better opponent, you need to try every trick in the book if you want to win. We should have done more reverses, halfback options, fake punts, or whatever. Desperate times call for desperate actions.

chiefzilla1501
10-25-2009, 08:54 PM
It is hard to see any reason for hope any time soon. This will be a decade long project, I fear. No, I don't miss Herm. He's the one that set us back 5 years.

I actually liked the gutsy play calling on 4th down. It it had worked, he would be the genious field general. When you are playing a better opponent, you need to try every trick in the book if you want to win. We should have done more reverses, halfback options, fake punts, or whatever. Desperate times call for desperate actions.

Herm didn't set this team back 5 years. I don't know why people continue to say that.

I think Haley, if he can figure things out, is much better than Herm. But people have to get it through their heads that this team was ****ed no matter who was coaching after Vermeil left.

BIG K
10-25-2009, 08:58 PM
It is hard to see any reason for hope any time soon. This will be a decade long project, I fear. No, I don't miss Herm. He's the one that set us back 5 years.

I actually liked the gutsy play calling on 4th down. It it had worked, he would be the genious field general. When you are playing a better opponent, you need to try every trick in the book if you want to win. We should have done more reverses, halfback options, fake punts, or whatever. Desperate times call for desperate actions.

Agreed. Jesus, the Chiefs have been 'rebuilding' since Herm. I am okay with that but, when you rebuild the entire roster every year, how do you develop players? I don't know if any of the players they let go would have mattered but, it seems their replacements are not doing any better either. I wonder if they are going to gut the team again this off-season..