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Old 04-29-2011, 02:09 AM  
Tribal Warfare Tribal Warfare is offline
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Mellinger: Did Pioli make the right call with Baldwin?

Did Pioli make the right call with Baldwin?
By SAM MELLINGER
The Kansas City Star

So, do you trust Scott Pioli?

That’s the only question that matters today in the wake of a wild first round of the NFL draft highlighted locally by a Chiefs’ trade for the 27th pick that became the 26th pick when the team ahead of them passed.

Now the rest of us try to make sense of it, and it all centers on whether you trust the Chiefs’ general manager.

Pioli could’ve had his choice of five offensive linemen who went late in the first round, helping a unit that desperately needs to get younger.

Or he could’ve drafted defensive help, specifically a potential shut-down cornerback or one of a handful of highly-regarded pass rushers to go opposite Tamba Hali.

Instead, he took Pittsburgh receiver Jonathan Baldwin to pair with Pro Bowler Dwayne Bowe. This is obviously a position of need — what’s left of Chris Chambers finished second among Chiefs receivers with 22 catches and 213 yards last year — but even then there’s no consensus that Baldwin is the right guy.

There is some serious “wrong-53” potential here. He accused his college coaches of sabotaging his draft stock, and besides, there are plenty who consider Maryland’s Torrey Smith the best receiver in the draft.

So, do you trust this?

Did a 10-6 season and first-round loss in the playoffs earn your faith?

Like any league’s draft, any strong reaction is probably an overreaction. Remember how excited everyone was for Glenn Dorsey? And how nobody talked much about Tony Moeaki after last year’s draft?

Packers’ GM Ted Thompson publicly criticized the cottage industry of draft experts, which is fine for the Super Bowl champion but also ignores that plenty of mistakes are made by the men who are paid millions to not make mistakes in the draft.

For proof, Tyson Jackson is still around.

So instead of getting worked up about specific players, it makes more sense to analyze the thinking behind the decisions.

And there is plenty to analyze.

A year ago, everyone drawing a Chiefs paycheck talked about finding “the right 53” and drafting captains and scholars and upstanding citizens. Today, they are talking up a receiver who publicly ripped his college coaches and quarterback.

Before this, Pioli talked about how he was conservative by nature and favored more predictable players rather than guys who could boom or bust. Today, he is talking about how excited he is to have drafted a gifted athlete who struggles at basic receiver requirements like route running.

“If you get yourself too tracked in to thinking one way and staying locked in on whatever belief system you have and not being altered,” Pioli says, “you’re setting yourself up for failure.”

Nobody among the group of Chiefs’ decision-makers believes the team is one or two players from contending for a Super Bowl, or that the locker room is to the rock-solid point of being able to absorb a major problem.

The flip response is that a team coached by Todd Haley can’t imagine a kid from western Pennsylvania having any sort of character issues, but the truth is the Chiefs’ coaches and executives feel they’re best equipped to help Baldwin grow up.

D-Bowe dropped his knucklehead act for at least a season, so if there is extra maturing needed here, then the Chiefs are on something of a hot streak with receivers.

In the best interpretation, Pioli is showing a lot of confidence in Haley and the other coaches. Haley made his NFL coaching name with receivers, standing up to Terrell Owens on the Cowboys’ sideline, for instance, and helping Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin become premier receivers in Arizona.

So, do you trust Pioli?

This is his third draft. The first one is an unmitigated disaster, and last year’s looks much more promising.

There is every reason to believe that last year’s success is more indicative than the previous failure because Pioli had surrounded himself with more of “his” people.

In that way, what we saw in the first round is exactly what Pioli learned in New England when they almost always picked late. The Chiefs dropped down to take an extra pick in the third round — remember, in addition to getting an extra player there are cost benefits to doing this — and still picked a position of need.

Because of how it played out, Pioli opened himself up to layers of second-guessing. If Baldwin flops and anyone in a group of Baylor defensive lineman Phil Taylor, Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith, Wisconsin offensive lineman Gabe Carimi and a handful of others in positions the Chiefs need help turn out to be stars, then Pioli will be rightly criticized.

For now, it is far too early to do that with anything other than a guess or false bravado.

So, do you trust Pioli?

The most recent body of evidence says you probably should.
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Old 04-29-2011, 02:13 AM   #2
Count Zarth Count Zarth is online now
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there are plenty who consider Maryland’s Torrey Smith the best receiver in the draft.


What the **** are you smoking, Mellinger?

COME BACK WHITLOCK
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Old 04-29-2011, 02:15 AM   #3
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Bag of shit article that basically said nothing.
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Old 04-29-2011, 02:17 AM   #4
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I couldnt finish this article. It was complete ass. That shit was stupid to the 10th power.

****er lost me at we could have picked up a shut down corner? really Flowers, Carr , Arenas, but a shut down corner? Come the **** on.
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Old 04-29-2011, 02:20 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Tribal Warfare View Post
Because of how it played out, Pioli opened himself up to layers of second-guessing. If Baldwin flops and anyone in a group of Baylor defensive lineman Phil Taylor, Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith, Wisconsin offensive lineman Gabe Carimi and a handful of others in positions the Chiefs need help turn out to be stars, then Pioli will be rightly criticized.
So... if the guy you pick turns out to be bad, and other guys you could have picked turn out to be good, then you might get criticized?

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Old 04-29-2011, 02:21 AM   #6
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Good Christ. What a pile of shit.
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Old 04-29-2011, 02:44 AM   #7
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Holy Shit. What a ****ing HORRIBLE article.....


Baldwins expression says it all
<
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Old 04-29-2011, 03:44 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tribal Warfare View Post
If Baldwin flops and anyone in a group of Baylor defensive lineman Phil Taylor, Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith, Wisconsin offensive lineman Gabe Carimi and a handful of others in positions the Chiefs need help turn out to be stars, then Pioli will be rightly criticized.
Retard. So, if Baldwin doesn't do well and ANY of those players do well, Pioli should be criticized? Every pick is a gamble, and none of those players are sure things.
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Old 04-29-2011, 03:45 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by BigRock View Post
So... if the guy you pick turns out to be bad, and other guys you could have picked turn out to be good, then you might get criticized?

Beat me to pointing out the absolute stupidity of this paragraph.
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Old 04-29-2011, 04:07 AM   #10
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Bag of shit article that basically said nothing.
Yeah that's about 90% of Mellinger's articles.
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Old 04-29-2011, 04:08 AM   #11
suzzer99 suzzer99 is offline
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Originally Posted by kcxiv View Post
I couldnt finish this article. It was complete ass. That shit was stupid to the 10th power.

****er lost me at we could have picked up a shut down corner? really Flowers, Carr , Arenas, but a shut down corner? Come the **** on.
Yeah but apparently Posnanski is some kind of money-grubbing whore for not sticking around for the bag of chips per article that the Star is obviously paying Mellinger.
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Old 04-29-2011, 04:08 AM   #12
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Forgetting how much I disagree with the content and implications of this "article," it is just atrociously written. What a complete ****ing moron.
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Old 04-29-2011, 04:12 AM   #13
suzzer99 suzzer99 is offline
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Yeah it's pretty obvious someone just told him (or he got the idea) to write a semi-controversial article that pokes at Pioli, but comes to a qualified positive conclusion. Always good to first pick your tone and conclusion for an essay, then just fill in mushy details that seem to fit.
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Old 04-29-2011, 04:14 AM   #14
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Old 04-29-2011, 04:16 AM   #15
kysirsoze kysirsoze is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suzzer99 View Post
Yeah it's pretty obvious someone just told him (or he got the idea) to write a semi-controversial article that pokes at Pioli, but comes to a qualified positive conclusion. Always good to first pick your tone and conclusion for an essay, then just fill in mushy details that seem to fit.
He knew most people would praise Pioli. He doesn't have the balls to blast the pick, so he wrote a half-assed "what if he's wrong" piece to try and play the Whitlock. He even ****ed that up.
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