A Pre-Season Grab Bag … Tuesday Cup O’Chiefs

So much in the news, so much to cover around pro football these days, so let’s take a day and look at other things going on around the league.


The much talked about new kickoff rule that moved the ball to the 35-yard line got its second week of action, wrapping up Monday night with the New York Giants victory over Chicago.

Here are the numbers for week No. 2:

  • 138 total kickoffs.
  • 59 touchbacks, 42.8 percent.
  • 124 kicks into the end zone, 89.9 percent.
  • 65 kicks brought out of the end zone, 47.1 percent.
  • 75 kicks returned, 54.4 percent.
  • Average kickoff return went for 26.2 yards

Here are the two week totals:

  • 278 total kickoffs.
  • 103 touchbacks, 37.1 percent.
  • 230 kicks into the end zone, 82.7 percent.
  • 127 kicks brought out of the end zone, 45.7 percent.
  • 161 total kickoff returns, averaging 25.6 yards per return.

The sample size remains too small to really make any definitive decision on the total impact of the rules change. In week No. 2 there were no TDs on returns, and the longest return was 73 yards. There were only five of 75 returns that went for 40 yards or more.

Both touchbacks and kickoffs reaching the end zone are up considerably from previous seasons, but there has been limited effect on slowing down the return game.


From the moment it was reported that former Ohio State QB Terrelle Pryor ran a 4.38 time in the 40-yard dash last weekend in his hastily arranged pro day workout, two words came to the mind of everybody in the NFL:

The Raiders.

The fascination the silver and black has with speed made the drafting of Pryor by Oakland in the NFL Supplemental Draft on Monday a foregone conclusion. The Raiders picked him up for a third-round selection in next year’s NFL Draft.

Just how Pryor factors into the Raiders right now remains in doubt. First of all, he has to serve the five-game suspension that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell carried over on him from Ohio State. He can do everything with the Raiders except take part in their practices and games until the suspension is over.

When it comes to practicing and playing, will he be a quarterback, or will he get moved to wide receiver? Or is he destined for a role similar to that of Kordell Stewart years ago with the Steelers; will Pryor be the next “Slash”?

In many ways, landing with Oakland is one of the worst things that could happen to Pryor. If there are flaws in his character, if he’s just a college guy that was on the make and continues to live his life where he tries to get over on people, whether for cars, tattoos are other stuff, then the Raiders are not a good landing spot for him. This kid needs established leaders, consistency and the strength of good production by the team.

Consistently rocky has been the road with Al Davis’ team. He had a coach in Tom Cable who improved the record, cracked down on some of the shenanigans that have torpedoed the Raiders chances so many times and they fired him. They cut loose the guy that went 6-0 in the AFC West last year, including walking into Arrowhead Stadium and walking away with a victory on the road in the division.

Oh, and giving up the third-round choice next season, goes a long with the second-round pick that was involved in a ’11 Draft Day deal with New England. They already dispatched to Washington for QB Jason Campbell a fourth-round selection.

The Chiefs will see the Raiders on October 23 in Oakland. That would be a week after Pryor could play his first game the previous Sunday against Cleveland. If the five-game suspension holds, he’ll miss games against Denver, Buffalo, the Jets, New England and Houston.


The Chiefs will run into Josh McDaniels again this week, when the Rams come to Arrowhead Stadium to play the Chiefs in the Governor’s Cup Game on Friday night.

The former Broncos coach, the man who Todd Haley wagged his finger at after one game last year, and came back and gave him a hug the next time the teams met, is now the offensive coordinator in St. Louis working with studly young QB Sam Bradford.

Up in Denver, they are stuck with Tim Tebow. It was McDaniels move to trade back into the first round of the 2010 NFL Draft so he could draft the QB out of the University of Florida. It certainly created a great deal of attention and commotion in the Rockies. That’s continued through the current pre-season where Denver’s starter for most of last year Kyle Orton, was supposedly almost traded to Miami. Tebow was competing for a starting job, but when Orton wasn’t traded, he was competing for the backup spot.

Now, there are stories out of Denver that Tebow is the third-team QB and there’s a possibility that he won’t even make the team and the Broncos will have to cut him and throw him back into the personnel pond. The problem with his throwing motion that was part of the discussion about him before the draft has not been cured, despite repeated attempts by various coaches to tighten his mechanics.

It’s another example of what happens when a coach gambles on a draft pick, and then the coach doesn’t survive in the position. There’s a domino effect as the team has a player that doesn’t fit, and they don’t seem to believe in, and there’s not another younger body at the position that could be considered the future starter.

On Monday, Broncos head coach John Fox named Kyle Orton as the team’s starting quarterback for the regular season opener against the Raiders.

8 Responses to “A Pre-Season Grab Bag … Tuesday Cup O’Chiefs”

  • August 23, 2011  - bhive01 says:

    Shame about Tebow. As a player he was inspirational in the national championship as one of the team leaders. He was as much a running back as a passer and his mechanics were never All-pro, but he must fit in somewhere? What about Buffalo? Surely Tebow is as good as if not better than Thigpen?

  • August 23, 2011  - el cid says:

    This is a bad year for developemental types. Just no time for them to learn and improve. Guess Tebow get bit by it. Mims at OL is a similar case, if cut or practice squad a team with room will grab him up and make him the LT for 2013 and not much the Chiefs can do about it. The rich, better positioned, teams get better while the lessor teams keep trying to dig out of the mess they are in.

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