There were high hopes coming into the 2012 season for the Kansas City Chiefs. They had a solid offseason, adding Stanford Rout, Eric Winston, and Peyton Hillis to a team that already had some good talent.
The fans had hopes of their first postseason win since January of 1994 but the playoffs are the furthest thing from their mind now. Fans are now focused on what needs to be done in order to prevent being next year’s laughing stock on top of being this year’s. Here are some changes the Chiefs need to make if they are committed to turning their franchise around.
1. Stop the turnovers and start the discipline.
Coming into Sunday, the Chiefs have 10 more turnovers than any other team in the NFL. In one of his last ditch efforts to save his job, Romeo Crennel has vowed to bench anyone responsible for a turnover on Monday night against Pittsburgh.
While this is a good move by Crennel, it is ridiculous that it took him this long to make it. He needs to make several more like it, not only to help the Chiefs, but to prove to his next boss that he will. Crennel is known as a “player’s coach” which is kind of like being a “cool parent”. When you let your kids run wild, that is exactly what they’ll do. Kansas City is the most underperforming team in the NFL and lack of discipline has played a key role in that.
2. Get Arrowhead back.
Arrowhead Stadium used to be one of the toughest places to play in the NFL. These days the Chiefs just do not have the support of the fans they once had. It’s tough to blame them considering their team hasn’t lead in regulation all season and have only won once in their last nine games at home. An occasional win, lowering ticket prices, and spending a lot in free agency would help but in order to get them back in full support of the team right now, they need to give the fans what they have been begging for, which is…
3. Fire Scott Pioli and Romeo Crennel.
Pioli and Crennel are in “please don’t fire us” mode and you can’t trust people who are on the brink of losing their jobs. In the past week they cut Stanford Rout and promoted Gary Gibbs from linebackers coach to defensive coordinator. Whether these moves are effective or not is irrelevant. Anything they do at this point is too little too late. With their fates all but written in stone and in full on desperation mode, Pioli and Crennel are still making major decisions for the Chiefs. Short of an almost impossible run to the playoffs, there is nothing they can do to win the fans over again so it makes no sense to keep them around any longer.
4. Draft a quarterback in the first round.
At least the Chiefs have shown they know a change is needed at quarterback by benching Matt Cassel for the less than ideal option of Brady Quinn. So fortunately, it is widely expected for them to pick one in the first round of the 2013 draft. The last time the Chiefs drafted a quarterback in the first round was in 1983 when they passed on Jim Kelly and Dan Marino to take Todd Blackledge seventh overall. The last time the Chiefs won a game with a quarterback they drafted in any round was in 1987 with Blackledge. With that history it’s understandable to be a little gun shy but it’s time to get over it.
5. Write Bill Cowher a blank check.
While Cowher has shown no interest in a return to coaching, the former Kansas City defensive coordinator has said he believes the Chiefs are a very talented team. The Chiefs are likely to pick a quarterback in the first round of next year’s draft and Cowher has proven the ability to win with a young quarterback. In Ben Roethlisberger’s rookie season, Cowher coached the Steelers to the AFC Championship Game and the following year they won the Super Bowl. Cowher would be ideal but the odds of landing him are slim. The Chiefs need to forget about the price tag and make a strong play for the best and most proven coaches available.