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Tribal Warfare
08-12-2011, 03:04 AM
Chiefs’ preseason opener may be rougher than usual (http://www.kansascity.com/2011/08/11/3071552/chiefs-preseason-opener-may-be.html)
By ADAM TEICHER
The Kansas City Star

The NFL lockout is over, but its associated fallout continues. One victim will be tonight’s Chiefs preseason opener.

The game between the Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Arrowhead Stadium will be played as scheduled. But because of shortened preparation time both during the offseason and at training camp, the game will feature something less than preseason quality, even by the often-ragged standard for preseason openers.

“I don’t think it’s going to be a perfect game,” said Chiefs defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel, taking a diplomatic approach. “It’s the first preseason game. Generally first preseason games have some mistakes.”

The Chiefs and Bucs might be making more than usual tonight. The Chiefs, at least, will be playing plenty of rookies and young players who haven’t had the benefit of offseason practices and have only participated in a training camp that was reduced in intensity because of new NFL rules limiting contact.

Even for veterans, the rhythm of camp has been disrupted by the lockout. Normally by now, players have pounded plenty on their own teammates and are ready to hit someone in an unfamiliar uniform.

This year? Not so much. The Chiefs have practiced in full pads at training camp a fraction of the time they usually do.

“We are at that point but not as much (as usual) because we haven’t hit each other much,” Chiefs linebacker Derrick Johnson said. “In a regular training camp, we’re always (having) two-a-days and all this stuff. We’re hitting each other every single day. You have that urge to hit somebody else.”

Asked whether he and his teammates are physically ready to play a football game, Johnson said: “I think so. But we don’t know yet. We’ll see (tonight).”

That’s an issue for the Chiefs because they have more than a dozen players who didn’t join practice until late last week because of NFL rules concerning free agents and when they could begin workouts.

Among them are key players like linebacker Tamba Hali, and defensive linemen Wallace Gilberry and Kelly Gregg. That’s why it would be surprising if many or even any of those players participated tonight.

“Definitely not a full game,” Gilberry said about his own readiness to play. “I’m just being honest. I definitely feel I can get out there and contribute and hold my own. But it’s going to take a while to get back into football shape. It’s not something that happens in a week or even two weeks. It takes time.

“The (defensive) line and the (offensive) line, it’s kind of different than the (cornerbacks). We’re always touching on somebody, hitting on somebody. That takes a lot out of you. You don’t get that training during the offseason just working with the trainer.”

Coach Todd Haley wouldn’t say which players wouldn’t participate tonight. But quarterbacks coach Jim Zorn said Matt Cassel, Tyler Palko and Ricky Stanzi would all play,

The Chiefs practiced at a slow pace early in camp to accommodate a group of players still trying to get into football shape. They increased the tempo in recent days, but overall, their time at Missouri Western hasn’t had the feel of training camp.

Tonight’s game also seems out of place.

“Whether it feels like it or not, we’ve got to play,” Crennel said. “It’s been very different from my previous camps. We’re trying to compact a lot of stuff into a week or a two-week period to try to give the guys the best chance to perform when they do get on the field.”

Haley said he wasn’t necessarily concerned about the quality of play in tonight’s game and was focused on the Sept. 11 regular-season opener against Buffalo, also at Arrowhead.

“I’m worried about our team and our progress,” Haley said. “Our No. 1 goal, as it always is, is to be ready for the opening of the season. These preseason games are part of that process from an evaluation standpoint, from getting the players ready to the speed of the game, all those things.

runnercyclist
08-12-2011, 08:24 AM
The shortened time didn't seem to bother the Patriots. I hope the Coaches have high exptectations for all who take the field tonight.

I am so glad football is back!

Halfcan
08-12-2011, 09:47 AM
The shortened time didn't seem to bother the Patriots. I hope the Coaches have high exptectations for all who take the field tonight.

I am so glad football is back!

The Pats suck-who runs up the score in a preseason game-what D-Bags.

lcarus
08-12-2011, 11:06 AM
"We’re always touching on somebody, hitting on somebody."

OH Wallace....behave yourself!

nascher
08-12-2011, 12:09 PM
Really it doesnt mean anything that the PATS win by 30 and even if we loose 0-30 tonight it doesn't mean anything.

Just Passin' By
08-12-2011, 12:43 PM
The Pats suck-who runs up the score in a preseason game-what D-Bags.

:spock:

munkey
08-12-2011, 12:49 PM
and water is wet...it's PRESEASON...I'm just happy to see the chiefs play again.

PatsFanDan
08-12-2011, 01:27 PM
The Pats suck-who runs up the score in a preseason game-what D-Bags.

Dude....it's not the Pats fault they drew Del Rio's Pop Warner football team in the first game of the preseason. Maybe cut a little slack.....it could have been like 80-12, instead of 47-12.

Brock
08-12-2011, 01:32 PM
The Pats suck-who runs up the score in a preseason game-what D-Bags.

Do you have some mental disability we're not aware of?