Here’s round two of the questions you guys posed to me late last week. Round No. 1 was up Sunday night.
Again, thank you for participating and visiting the site.
What’s going to happen with the situation between players and owners on a new contract?
I would like to think that neither side wants to kill the golden goose that has been laying a lot of golden eggs for the last decade. Both owners and players have made a lot of money. The owners think the players have made too much money and they want them to give some back, or take on some of the risk that goes with the business of running a football team. Reasonable people can come to a reasonable agreement. If either side becomes unreasonable, then we’ve got problems.
What are the chances of a lockout in 2011?
Right now, it looks like there will be no football in 2011. But there is so much ground that has to be covered by the owners and players it is way too early to know.
How does the CBA situation affect the Chiefs building process?
Like all teams, they are going to have to deal with new rules and regulations, the uncapped season coming up here in 2010. As long as the new agreement keeps the playing field relatively level, then it should have little impact.
How will Chiefs handle uncapped season and can K.C. make Super Bowl without a cap?
I don’t think we’ll see much of a difference in how the Chiefs approach the way they operate. The Hunt Family is not suddenly going to become like Dan Snyder of the Redskins and spend hundreds of millions in free agency. They are not going to blow the lid off the budget because a limit no longer exists. That’s not the kind of operation they want to build. I think the Chiefs will approach revising their roster in the same manner they did last year. They will sign a number of free agents, but unlikely any of the big names, and they will use the draft.
Who will Chiefs target in free agency?
They will target players who fit the systems they are trying to put in place, without overspending. Not overspending is hard to do in free agency and it’s something the Chiefs shouldn’t get hung up on. Everybody likes a bargain, but the key is finding talent that helps the Chiefs win games. We should always expect Pioli/Haley to go after players they know, so any UFA from the Patriots or Cardinals will be attractive, guys like Patriots TE Ben Watson, DE Jarvis Green and NT Vince Wilfork and Raiders DE Richard Seymour.
Will Clark Hunt spend money for Vince Wilfork?
More than likely signing Wilfork will require a big-money contract and he would certainly be an upgrade at nose tackle for the Chiefs. For a lot of reasons, spending money on Wilfork would make a lot of sense for the Chiefs. It would take that position off their need board, and they would still have those three early picks. This will be an interesting situation to watch. Will Hunt spend the bucks? Based on the money he was willing to commit to Matt Cassel, if Pioli tells him he needs to open the vault, one would expect Hunt to provide the combination.
Will they be willing to go after older players, like they did this year with Zach Thomas and Mike Brown? New England always seems to be signing older guys to help their team. Will the Chiefs do the same?
I think Pioli/Haley will always be willing to sign veteran players that they personally know and who they believe can come in and provide experience and leadership. The longer they are in place, the fewer of those guys will be needed. That’s when a team gets into a spot where the Patriots are. They believe their core group of players is set and they fill in with veterans where there might be holes in their roster. That’s when a franchise knows that the process is working.
How would you put into an order the needs the Chiefs have going into the draft?
OK, here goes: ILB, G, WR, NT, S, OT, OLB, RB and TE.
Who would be on your big board as far as players the Chiefs should consider?
It’s way too early to tell. I haven’t dived into the draft pool yet, so I can’t provide any insight beyond the superficial stuff that’s being written and said by those outside of the league scouts and personnel people. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read or heard that LB So-and-So is a top 15 pick in the first round in January, and come April he does not get selected until the third round. I would think the consideration pool on those top three picks would include every position but quarterback and running back.
What are the chances of the Chiefs trading down in the first-round of the draft?
If given the opportunity to pick up more picks, I’m sure they would. But it’s very tough to trade a top five pick because of the financial ramifications.
What about Eric Berry, the safety at Tennessee?
He’s a talented safety with big-play potential. If he’s there at No. 5, I’m sure he would be a major consideration for the choice.
I have a man crush on Alabama LB Rolando McClain. Is there any chance he could be the Chiefs choice at No. 5?
I would think McClain will be a consideration for sure. His intangibles are right up the Chiefs alley, and then there’s Nick Saban and his background in the Belichick-style of football.
What’s the X-factor in evaluating offensive line prospects?
I’m not sure there’s one factor but the thing that scouts will always look at with blockers is their feet. How quick are they? How do they move? A tackle has to have great feet to play in the NFL. If he’s slow of foot, he won’t survive. It’s only a notch less important at center and guard. Everybody has to have the size and strength that’s the NFL norm. The difference is the feet.
If you were using the Chiefs first three picks in the draft, what positions would you take?
Before anything happens in free agency, I would list the team’s biggest needs as OT, ILB and WR. I would use those picks on those positions.
Everyone talks about the Chiefs needing a nose tackle; will they invest another high pick on the defensive line? Can they afford to do that after using so many picks on the D-line over the last few years?
If that’s the spot they feel they need help and that’s what is available, then they should go that way. I know that would cause some PR problems because fans are sick of nothing but defensive line guys over the last few years. Again, if they sign a Vince Wilfork, they can take that spot off their draft wish list.
A bunch of us were talking at the local watering hole and we decided the Chiefs drafts went south after Whitey Dovell passed away. Would you agree?
No, I would not. Dovell in his brief time with the Chiefs did take part in drafting some good players, like Neil Smith, Derrick Thomas, Tim Grunhard and Dave Szott. But there were plenty of players drafted afterwards that improved those teams of the ’90s, like Dale Carter, Will Shields, Jerome Woods, John Browning, Donnie Edwards and Tony Gonzalez.
A bunch of us want to know what five moves you would make with free agency and the draft to improve the Chiefs next season?
Picking these in a vacuum doesn’t accomplish much but here are my five moves: 1. Sign UFA NT Vince Wilfork. 2. Sign RFA Darren Sproles. 3. Draft LB Rolando McClain in first round. 4. Draft OT Charles Brown out of Southern Cal in the second round. 5. Draft WR Jordan Shipley of Texas in the second round.
Do you agree with the names that Todd Haley gave as his core players?
If Haley says they are his core players, then they are, but I think it was a bit early to make those types of designations.
What offensive linemen and wide receivers from this year will be with the team in 2010?
I don’t sense there will be that much turnover on the offensive line. I think the RG and RT spots are in play, and then C. I would expect plenty of competition for all of those spots. At wide receiver, they must upgrade the talent so after Dwayne Bowe and Chris Chambers β if they can re-sign him β I would say the other spots should be wide open.
What are the Chiefs going to do about the safety position? Does Jarrad Page have a job next year? Will they give DaJuan Morgan a shot?
The safety spot is a real unknown for ’10. I would imagine that Haley would like to have Mike Brown come back; he was a big fan of the veteran safety. Coming off his calf injury, Page will be a restricted free agent. It will be interesting to see if the Chiefs give him a tender offer. Morgan doesn’t appear to have much of a future with the Chiefs, although that could change with Romeo Crennel in charge now. But Morgan had several chances to play last year and did not impress the coaches in any fashion.
What did you see from Matt Cassel during the season that indicates he has qualities to be a franchise quarterback?
Cassel has all the intangible qualities that a franchise quarterback must possess. He’s dedicated, team-oriented, is careful with his words, intelligent, outgoing, driven and willing to put in endless hours of work. He is mobile, which is necessary in today’s game. Although his arm is not like a howitzer, it’s plenty strong enough. His improvement must come in decision making, learning to get the ball out of his hands faster to avoid sacks. I think that will come with more starts; remember he has 30 starts in the last nine years.
Will Derrick Johnson be with the Chiefs in 2010?
I would say it’s unlikely, but D.J. may get caught in the back wash of the non-cap year and the change in free agency rules. Under the old system, he would be an unrestricted free agent. Under the no-cap system, he would be a restricted free agent. Johnson wants a chance to be a full-time player and I think he’ll push to get that opportunity.
There has been talk about moving Branden Albert from left tackle; does that make sense?
Without a doubt, Albert took a step backwards this season. Although there was improvement over the last four to six weeks of the season, his level of play did not match what he showed as a rookie. If they had an opportunity to draft a top-ranked left tackle, then moving Albert to right tackle or guard would make sense. Albert has not yet displayed that he should be considered a lock-down left tackle for the rest of his career.
Glenn Dorsey & Tyson Jackson, will they ever make the Pro Bowl and were the worthy top five picks?
I think it’s way too early to use words like “ever” and “worthy” when talking about Dorsey and Jackson. Must they improve? Absolutely. Can they improve? Yes, they have the skills. It’s way too early to pull the “bust” chain on either man.
The Chiefs played in white on white uniforms at the end of the season. Why did they change from the white tops and red pants?
Not sure why they changed, although it may have had something to do with the 50th season of the AFL. The Chiefs have bounced back and forth over the last 25 years on wearing red or white pants with their white road tops.
What are the duties of a team’s quality control staff?
The quality control staff and its duties vary from team-to-team. Almost all of them break down a lot of film, whether it’s the upcoming opponent or their own team. They also work the computer and study tendencies. After those basic duties, individual coaches ask their quality control people to do many different things.
My understanding is that the clock stops until the next snap on incomplete passes and out of bounds plays. Yet from time to time I swear I see the officials restart the clock in those cases before the next snap. Am I right, and if so why?
The clock always stops after an incompletion or the ball carrier going out of bounds. The referee starts the game clock before the next snap up to the two-minute warning in the first half and up to the last five minutes of the second half. In those windows of time, the clock does not start again until the next snap.
The players who are on the injured-reserve list, can they practice, go to meetings or spend time with the coaching staff?
Those players on IR can go to meetings and spend time with the coaching staff. They are not allowed to practice with the team. They can work out and rehab at the team’s facility, but cannot work with coaches on the practice field.
All the dropped passes the team has this year, was that a lack of talent or were the receivers just too uptight?
There were a lot of factors involved
Where can we find tape of the telecasts of old Chiefs games?
Good luck. There are a lot of sites on the web where you can find VHS and even some DVD copies of TV broadcasts of NFL games. Generally, you have to be willing to trade to get these items since selling them would be a violation of the league and network copyright. But I won’t tell if you don’t tell. Do a Goggle on NFL game tapes and you will find quite a few sites where game tapes area available.
The league wants to shut down a revenue sharing program that provides money for small-market teams, but the NFL Players Association has forced the issue to arbitration. Would this hurt the Chiefs in the upcoming uncapped season?
The program in question has the top 15 teams in revenue putting money into a pot which is made available to teams at the bottom of the revenue list. It doesn’t have anything to do with small or large markets. It’s small or large revenue. For many years the Chiefs were in the top 15 and put money into a pot for the low revenue teams. After the last few years, there’s a chance the Chiefs may qualify to receive some of that money. It’s just another one of those tussles involved in putting together a new collective bargaining agreement. I doubt the situation has much effect on the Chiefs.
What’s the procedure on waiver claims during the season? For instance, I know in the off-season the Chiefs are fifth when it comes to claiming players. What happens once the season starts?
The previous season’s record is in play until the day after the NFL trading deadline, usually in early October. That’s when the current season record decides waiver claim status.
Who was your favorite among the Chiefs super fans? Mine was Belly Boy and the guy with arrows in his shirt. Who was yours?
That’s like asking which one of my children I love more! I enjoyed all of the super fans from Arrowman, to Weird Wolf, to X-Factor, to the guys that used to have the Coneheads that looked like footballs and Touchdown Elvis. Then there was the guy who painted himself red for every home game and got on TV a lot because his seats were near the field. Turns out he was in the witness protection program. I’m not sure where he lives now. I have enjoyed them all!