I’m a half a century old and I’ve seen enough Chiefs football to say emphatically - this is the worst run organization from top to bottom I’ve ever seen in Kansas City. And we’ve had some pretty down years in the 1970’s, 1980’s and 2000’s. Though we’re not the Saints or the Browns just yet, we’re getting too close for comfort.
So what needs to be done?
It’s evident at 1-5 Romeo Crennel can no longer serve dual roles for this franchise. He has no fluidity as a head coach and his defensive coaching responsibilities remind me of one of the organizations darkest black eyes, Greg Robinson.
It was Romeo who changed the Chiefs defensive schemes the week before the Atlanta Falcons home opener. And it wasn’t until two games later against New Orleans, that he switched back to the one he implemented in the off-season and through four pre-season games.
No matter what Crennel does now, it appears as long as the Chiefs continue to pay him; he’ll just play out the string counting the days until his retirement in the first week of January. Because the 2012 season is over and his second stint as head coach assures him he won’t get a chance for a third strike.
To make matters worse, Offensive Coordinator Brian Daboll, should be shown the door as well. His game plans are horrible, unimaginative and riddled with ineptitude. In fact, I’d give the offensive to Jim Zorn at least he’s been an NFL quarterback and maybe under his guidance, he can get something out of Cassel/Quinn.
And then there is General Manger Scott Pioli, who amongst rumors has a contract offer on the table, assembled a team that has more talent than his predecessor, Carl Peterson, put together in any of the last ten seasons of his tenure in Kansas City.
But when you meddle as a General Manager, you make decisions that continually try to fit square pegs into round holes such as Matt Cassel, Todd Haley, Tyson Jackson. Stanford Routt, Daboll and Crennel, you’ve exceeded your NFL version of Nine Lives!
When Pioli dumped Haley a year ago, he had a solid laundry list of NFL prospective coaches that wanted this job. The one who pushed the hardest was former Baltimore Ravens Head Coach, Brian Billick.
But he would not work with Pioli. Nor would Jeff Fisher, who gave the Chiefs a secondary courtesy interview in Dallas that ended within two hours. And this was after Pioli met Fisher in Tennessee, prior to Haley’s dismissal.
And when Pioli, who had first crack at free agent Quarterback Peyton Manning, after a five hour meeting with Manning’s reps in KC that just infuriated his camp, the prized free agent went to division rival, Denver.
Still we can blame Pioli, Crennel or Daboll all we want. Heck, while we’re at it, let’s throw the players under the bus - because they’ve down right embarrassed the Chiefs uniform.
But those excuses are too easy.
Instead the blame sits on the hands and shoulders of Chairman of the Board Clark Hunt. I’m done defending the fact he has big shoes to fill by attempting to guide this franchise the way his father did, the late Lamar Hunt.
As things look now, he can’t do it. So what should he do next?
Well if he’s going to evaluate himself to date as an owner, he needs to look at his limitations. And understand, that he needs some help.
With that admission, he needs to open up his checkbook as wide as the Grand Canyon to fix this franchise. He needs to throw caution to the wind and appoint someone that can stand atop the organization with complete power. And should he do that, he can come out the Hero of the franchise. That is if he follows my plan!
First up, Hunt needs to turn the entire operations of his football team over to President, Mark Donovan. And with that complete autonomy to fix the franchise as he sees fit, he’ll have a commitment to spend to the cap limit each year going forward in regards to players and will have no limitations financially to hire the best coaches and personnel men in the game today.
Donovan has already restructured the business side of the Chiefs. Gone are the handshake deals and extended family jobs given out by Peterson. Over the last two years advertisers and sponsors are locked down for the long term as Donovan has shown an incredible amount of ingenuity for doing that with Haley and Pioli as detriments within the fan base.
With the new power in hand, Donovan, should withdraw the two-year contract extension on the table to Pioli (even though the Chiefs denied after the Bucs loss - they best tear it up anyway) and fire him during the Bye Week.
So what’s next?
Well someone has to fill those shoes. So Donovan should either promote Player Personnel Director, Ray Farmer as a stopgap General Manager or hire the games best cap man, Philadelphia Player Personnel Director, Rick Mueller, and promote him to Pioli’s vacated position full time.
By doing so the fan base will feel vindicated and Donovan can begin work on Crennel and Daboll’s buyout. In fact anyone Pioli hired, should get the boot.
Should I go on? I think so because I’m on a roll!
With the top end of the personnel side in order, Donovan must prepare a financial package so large that he can land one four men to become the next head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs. They are in no particular order - Andy Reid, should he leave Philly at seasons end, CBS Broadcaster Bill Cowher, ESPN Analyst Jon Gruden or the aforementioned Brian Billick.
But no matter which man he identifies that will get 100% effort out of his players every Sunday, it’s not going to be cheap hire.
But if you’re going to give Pioli a deal somewhere north of $7 million per season, you better be prepared to pay Reid, Cowher, Gruden or Billick even more to lure them to a Pioli-less Arrowhead.
And if those balls don’t start rolling down hill after Sunday’s embarrassing 38-10 loss at the hands of the inept Tampa Bay Bucs, I’ll personally deliver one of my very own Realtor signs and offer the team up for sale without an Exclusive Sellers Agreement. Instead, I’ll do it on behalf of the fans. In fact, I’ll even find a buyer willing to dish out $1.25 Billion and take no commission.
You know the saddest part of my tirade today is the Chiefs are mirroring the sorry ownership of their Truman Sports Complex neighbors, the Kansas City Royals.
David Glass and his penny-pinching ways have eroded that fan base so much so, that unless he signs two front line pitchers before next season, fans won’t be coming back to the ‘K’ like they did in 2012’s season of promise.
To that light, Chiefs fans are beginning to wonder if Hunt is living in the same fraternity as the Wal-Mart Kingpin. One that is more worried about the bottom line instead of building a consistent winner that requires spending the right cash in the right places every single season.
And that means you must pay the price for a Franchise Quarterback? Either with a plethora of future draft picks or the kind of sick money only a few people win in the Mega Millions Power Ball.
There is no easy fix for the Kansas City Chiefs. The current slide didn’t happen over night, it began to erode during the final season of Dick Vermeil’s tenure. But to right this ship, Clark Hunt has some mighty bitter pills to swallow that won’t go down easily.
But if Hunt isn’t willing to start a plan on Monday and aim for 2013, then he should call the guys that own Sporting KC to see if they want the Chiefs, then head back down to Texas with an abundance of riches. Which I know is something he does not want to do.
On a personal note Mr. Hunt, after you yank my press credentials for speaking my mind, at least give me props for not just wielding the ax with no plan to back it up. I think what I’ve proposed is certainly better than the one that’s been in place since Peterson was booted to the curb.
But either way if I ever shake your hand again, at least respect my words because I don’t know many fans within the Chiefs nation, the one your father built, feels any different than I do after your teams miserable 1-5 start.
So in the immortal words of Nike’s premier catch phrase – “Just Do It!” If not, sell the franchise to someone who will get it done.
WARPAINT ILLUSTRATED MESSAGE BOARDS:
Do you have faith that Clark Hunt can install real change into the organization?
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