Big Comeback Possible For Chan … Tuesday Cup O’Chiefs

There was a lot of going on Monday in the NFL coaching world and there were some familiar names to Chiefs fans involved in the activity.

Up in Buffalo, out of nowhere it looks like Chan Gailey (left with Matt Cassel) has a chance to be the new head coach of the Buffalo Bills. Yes, the man that Todd Haley fired as offensive coordinator at the start of September, could be one of the 32 leaders in the league as early as Tuesday.

Out in San Francisco, the 49ers hired Kurt Schottenheimer as their special teams coach. Schottenheimer sat out the ’09 season, after leaving the Packers following the ’08 season.

And with the Carolina Panthers, Richard Williamson announced his retirement after some 45 years in the world of coaching, including four seasons (1983-86) with the Chiefs on the staff of John Mackovic.

GAILEY

When he was fired by the Chiefs after the third pre-season game, there was talk about Gailey doing work for the franchise in the personnel department for the rest of the season. That did not happen. Chan and Laurie Gailey spent a few weeks afterwards in Kansas City packing up their condo, and after leaving to go welcome another grandchild into the world, they returned to K.C. and moved everything back to their home in Georgia.

There was little doubt Gailey would be back in the NFL come the 2010 season. He’s a very talented coach, who has seen it all over his career and generally has been very successful. Gailey is also one of the classiest guys in the coaching business. With the gift of hindsight, the job Gailey did with the Chiefs offense in the ’08 season, especially in the second half of that schedule, was one of the better coaching performances the franchise saw in the last decade.

In fact, here’s some of the important numbers of the 2008 Chiefs offense, compared to the 2009 unit under Haley’s direction.

Season

Yards

Rushing

Passing

1st Downs

TDs

Sacks

Int

Comp %

2009

4,851

1,929

2,922

256

26

45

17

55.2%

2008

4,939

1,810

3,129

273

32

37

16

57.3

Gailey’s offense had more yards, more passing yards, more first downs, more scores, better completion percentage (with three different starting quarterbacks) and fewer sacks and interceptions.

That Gailey’s return may come as a head coach is what’s surprising. But it sounds like it’s the right place at the right time, and that’s generally half the battle for getting one of those 32 jobs. Buffalo’s new GM Buddy Nix wants someone who has been a head coach before and is strong on the offensive side of the ball. Those job qualifications have Gailey written all over it, what with his two years as head coach of the Dallas Cowboys (18-14 with two trips to the playoffs) and six years leading the program at Georgia Tech (44-33, with six trips to bowl games.)

The last time the Bills hired a former head coach of the Chiefs to lead their team, it worked out pretty well. That would have been Marv Levy, who led Buffalo to four consecutive Super Bowl appearances.

SCHOTTENHEIMER

After a year out of coaching, Kurt Schottenheimer returns to the NFL as the 49ers special teams coach. His hiring was announced on Monday by head coach Mike Singletary.

It’s a bit of a reunion in the Bay Area for Schottenheimer. San Francisco’s offensive coordinator is Jimmy Raye and the defensive coordinator is Greg Manusky. In fact, Singletary got glowing recommendations from both Raye and Manusky and that was one reason he decided to bring Schottenheimer in for the 2010 season, replacing Al Everest.

“He brings with him invaluable experience from more than 30 years of service in the NFL and college coaching ranks,” Singletary said in a statement released by the Niners. “Kurt has a diverse background and a tremendous knowledge of personnel, both of which will serve the 49ers well in producing a top-notch special teams unit.”

It’s been a few years since Kurt handled the kicking game. He was the Chiefs special teams coach for six seasons (1989-94), where the Chiefs accounted for eight touchdowns and blocked 22 kicks. He was named the co-winner of the 1990 NFL Special Teams Coach of the Year Award.

Over his NFL career, Kurt Schottenheimer has coached for the Browns, Chiefs, Redskins, Lions, Packers, Rams and now the 49ers.

WILLIAMSON

“My wife and I talked about this for a while, and you’re never sure it’s the right time,” said Williamson, who announced his retirement on Monday. “But this seemed like the right time.”

It’s been awhile since Williamson was coaching the wide receivers for the Chiefs. He came to Arrowhead Stadium in 1983 to join the staff of Mackovic, who was hired off the coaching staff of Tom Landry in Dallas.

Williamson handled the wide receivers and with Mackovic instituting a pass happy offensive attack, the receivers got very busy. He helped WR Carlos Carson develop into a two-time Pro Bowl performer and it was his coaching that helped a undrafted rookie free agent in ’83 named Stephone Paige enjoy a nine-season career with the Chiefs.

After Mackovic was fired following the Chiefs only post-season game in 15 years following the 1986 season, Williamson went to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He spent five years with the Bucs, including 19 games a head coach of the Bucs when he replaced Ray Perkins.

He was part of the first coaching staff of the Panthers, joining the expansion team in 1995 on Dom Capers staff. Williamson has been there ever since, helping to develop receivers Muhsin Muhammad and Steve Smith during his time in Charlotte.

“I have enjoyed being with the Panthers since the beginning,” Williamson said. “It was great to be part of the development of the Panthers from an expansion team to a Super Bowl contender, and I appreciate the way Mr. (Jerry) Richardson does things. This organization is the class of the NFL and I have tremendous respect for him.”

Williamson is a legend in his native Alabama since he was the first person to catch a touchdown pass from Joe Namath while playing for Bear Bryant’s Crimson Tide during the 1961-62 seasons. He always had a great sense of humor about the game and coaching. As he told one Carolina reporter on Monday: “He has joked over the years that it is hard to talk to players about his legendary coach ‘because these guys don’t even know who Bear Bryant was’.”

ONE FOR DAD

A note worth repeating courtesy of Peter King’s Monday Morning Quarterback column on si.com:

“The moment I liked most from the weekend happened Sunday night, in the bowels of Qualcomm Stadium, where Marty Schottenheimer had coached the Chargers for five seasons, and where he shockingly was fired after going 14-2 and losing an opening playoff game.

“Marty’s boy, Brian, the offensive coordinator of the Jets, had just done his part Sunday orchestrating an offense with a rookie quarterback and a rookie running back into an upset of the Chargers that left the locals just as deflated as they were in 2006. And as a light rain fell on this crumbling place, Brian took out his cell phone, dialed his dad’s number, heard him say, “Hello,” and son said to father: “Dad, this one’s for you.”

OTHER COACHING NEWS OF NOTE

Out in San Diego, the Chargers announced a three-year contract extension for head coach Norv Turner. Coming the day after the team dropped out of the playoffs in losing at home to the Jets, it was curious timing. Turner replaced Marty Schottenheimer two years ago and has an overall record of 23-13, with two disappointments in the playoffs.

In Denver, apparently head coach Josh McDaniels and defensive coordinator Mike Nolan agreed to disagree and Nolan has left the Broncos. That’s very strange given the improvement Denver made on defense under his direction during the ’09 season. Apparently there were some sort of philosophical differences between the two.

Nolan immediately headed for Miami, where he will interview and likely get the open defensive coordinator’s position with the Dolphins.

Chiefs LB coach Gary Gibbs was on the interview list in Miami as well. Whether Nolan’s availability ends Gibbs’ chances is unknown.

NEWS, INFORMATION, HIRINGS, FIRINGS & MOVEMENT AROUND THE LEAGUE

  • CHARGERS – As he was driving to Sunday’s game at Qualcomm Stadium, WR Vincent Jackson was pulled over by the San Diego police because the music coming from his vehicle was too loud. Jackson was then cited for having expired tags and a suspended driver’s license. His car was impounded and he ended up getting to the stadium with help from QB Philip Rivers.
  • COWBOYS – Various media outlets are reporting that head coach Wade Phillips will be back in 2010 with a contract extension. Phillips contract has an option season that apparently Jerry Jones plans to pick up, along with another year or two.
  • VIKINGS – DE Ray Edwards has a mild MCL knee sprain but should be able to play on Sunday against New Orleans.

FROM THE PAGES OF AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME HISTORY

On January 19, 2003, the Oakland Raiders beat the Tennessee Titans 41-24, in the 2002 AFC Championship Game at Network Associates Coliseum in Oakland. The Raiders rode the right arm of 37-year old QB Rich Gannon to the victory and a trip to the Super Bowl. In fact the Raiders had only one running play in the first three quarters of the game, as Gannon picked apart the Titans defense, throwing for 286 yards and three touchdown passes. He also scored a touchdown running the ball. Gannon connected with WR Jerry Porter for a three-yard TD, RB Charlie Garner for a 12-yard score and TE Doug Jolley for a one-yard score. He got into the end zone himself with a two-yard TD run.

SAY HAPPY BIRTHDAY …

Born on January 19, 1954 in Oakland, California was QB Steve DeBerg (right). He joined the Chiefs in 1988 via a trade with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in exchange for S Mark Robinson and fourth and eighth-round draft choices. DeBerg played four seasons with the Chiefs (1988-91), appearing in 57 games and starting 52 times. His record as the team’s starting QB was 31-20-1. DeBerg completed 934 of 1,616 passing attempts for 11,873 yards, 67 touchdowns and 50 interceptions. He finished his 17-season NFL career by playing for the Buccaneers, Dolphins and Falcons. Over his time in the league, he appeared in 206 games, throwing for 34,241 yards with 196 touchdowns and 296 interceptions.

Born on January 19, 1960 in Dallas was S Durwood Roquemore. He was selected in the sixth round of the 1982 NFL Draft out of what was then known as Texas A&I. Roquemore appeared in 24 games over two seasons (1982-83) with the Chiefs, starting three times. He had five interceptions, including one that he returned 42 yards for a touchdown in 1983 against the New York Giants. Roquemore finished his career playing five games with Buffalo during the ’87 season.


11 Responses to “Big Comeback Possible For Chan … Tuesday Cup O’Chiefs”

  • January 19, 2010  - rob says:

    Well at least vincent jackson wasn’t shot. San Diego PD must hate them chargers.


  • January 19, 2010  - aPacificChief says:

    That’s why NYPD are called the finest, cause they wouldn’t impound the leading receivers car the day of the game. Go Revis!


  • January 19, 2010  - Merwin in NY says:

    Dumbest move the Chargers made was to fire Marty after going 14 – 2, I’m glad his son got redemption for him. That forth down play at the end of the game SLAMMED the door shut on their hopes! Still in all a good game to watch, I was expecting if the Chargers couldn’t put them away early the Jets would have a chance to win toward the end.
    Anyone else remember the gutsy performance of Stave DeBerg playing with that pin sticking out of his finger. I Think he had to be very careful handing off so that he didn’t jamb that finger.


  • January 19, 2010  - Scott D says:

    The play that killed the Chargers was the decision to try an onside kick after Rivers’ sneak TD. I’m not saying they would have stopped the Jets – but if they would have, they might have had a chance. They odds just seemed way too high against them, but they did it anyway. You have to believe there will be some changes, even though they have retained Turner. BTW – how is it that Turner gets a second chance, when Marty didn’t?

    Yeah, I remember that game with DeBerg. He was a class guy, and tough as nails. I thought he did a great job while in the red and gold. Here’s hoping that Cassel will be as tough.


  • January 19, 2010  - Arrowheadlines: Chiefs News 1/19 says:

    [...] Big Comeback Possible For Chan … Tuesday Cup O’Chiefs from Bob Gretz [...]


  • January 19, 2010  - Mad Chief says:

    Scott D says:
    ” BTW – how is it that Turner gets a second chance, when Marty didn’t?”

    Because Charger’s GM A.J. Smith is a dick. Can I say that here? Oh well…just did. Sorry if I shouldn’t have, but that’s the plain and simple truth.


  • January 19, 2010  - Mad Chief says:

    Good luck to Chan in Buffalo. I hope he turns them around. Except when they’re playing us, of course.


  • January 19, 2010  - gorillafan says:

    I did hate marty ball in my younger years, BUT, Marty WON, and he wins everywhere he goes. Smith firing marty was retarded, dumbass move. What also clashed is that marty wanted to keep brees and smith wanted to keep rivers. while rivers is a good qb, you have to think marty was right again!!! brees is much better


  • January 19, 2010  - big vess says:

    A.J. Smith is a idiot for extending Turner’s contract deal.Turner is not a motivator or discipline coach to that team it showed Sunday a complete meltdown loss of composure. The Chargers fans should be angry at Smith. I never cared for Smith from the start after how he treated Marty. T


  • January 19, 2010  - big vess says:

    The Chargers window of opportunity is closing slowly. They will be the favorite next year to the media or Denver to win the West. To me the Chargers have a lot of players to sign . And that will be very critical to A.J Smith to whom they will keep. I would love to have McNeil at tackle if the Chiefs are interested. I heard some people say they would love to have Wilfork. I would love it also he would really help the nose position if KC pursues him.Congratulations to Gailey for getting the job at Buffalo but if I was Buffalo I would have gotten Leslie Frazier or Chung or Rivera. I think one of those three are a diamond in a rough. Hello Al!!! if Cable does not come back to Oakland there are your three.Guys I am not a Raiders fan but if I was Al I would try for any of those three. I know he wants Jim Harbaugh but he is staying put at Stanford.Anyways I am looking forward to see what TEAM PROCESS is going to do. I will be watching the Hula Bowl and Senior Bowl very closely and the combine next month.


  • January 19, 2010  - big vess says:

    Also I have a something for you Bob and the rest of us Chiefs fan. If you were a GM or head coach of an expansion team say like LA or Orlando where would you start? would you build your offense first ?or your defense? I know defense would probally be everyone’s choice but I just want to know .




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