Chiefs-Bills Potpourri – Saturday Cup O’Chiefs

Chan Gailey is a southern gentleman. He’s a God fearing family man who loves his wife, his country and his job, and it’s in that order. His idea of salty language on a daily basis is throwing out a gosh or a darn.

But when the game is on, and he’s calling the plays for his offense, Gailey turns into a polecat, liable to surprise opponents with all sorts of offensive shenanigans, plays of misdirection and trickery.

Gailey has always been one of the offensive guys that looks at the talent on his roster and finds ways to use them that tend to surprise opponents. His first foray was with Pittsburgh, when he took a seldom used young quarterback Kordell Stewart and turned him into Slash: a thrower, runner and catcher. When Slash came into the game, anything could happen.

Go back to the 2008 season with the Chiefs, when Tyler Thigpen became the starting quarterback. In an attempt to make Thigpen comfortable, Gailey changed the Chiefs offense, installing the pistol, where the quarterback was always in shotgun formation. While it didn’t show in the final record, the Kansas City offense went from dreadful to frequently quite effective with Thigpen running the attack out of the pistol.

Now, Gailey has one of the most versatile players league at his disposal as he brings the Buffalo Bills to Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday. Former University of Missouri QB Brad Smith can run, throw and catch. He can also return. He’s done most of that while playing wide receiver for the New York Jets.

But with the Bills, he’s listed as the team’s third quarterback. He’s so much more than that. In five seasons with the Jets, Smith scored touchdowns as a runner, receiver, returner and passer. He has 3,370 career yards on offense and special teams.

“He is very dangerous with the ball in his hands whether it’s at receiver or on a reverse running the wild cat,” Gailey said this week of Smith. “He played a two-minute drill running our offense in pre-season. He moved it fairly decently at the end of the ball game. He gives you a lot of versatility there being able to run it and throw it.”

Chiefs defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel is planning to get a healthy dose of Gailey’s offensive creativity. It’s especially probable give that it’s the first game of the season and there’s not any tape to watch of Smith working with Gailey.

“You have to be fundamentally sound,” Crennel said of defending the Buffalo offense with Gailey and Smith. “Then you have to cover your bases. You can’t prepare for everything; this is the first regular season game and they haven’t shown everything. You can try to prepare for what you know they might show. If they show you something different your guys hopefully can handle it and not give up a big play.”


Starting with the regular season games, NFL teams can have 46 players dressed and active for the game. In the past few years, they were allowed 45 players and then an extra body that was the No. 3 quarterback. He could only play in the first three quarters if the other two quarterbacks were injured.

That’s gone now. If a team wants to carry three quarterbacks into a game, they can still use that 46th spot for No. 3. But more than likely, most teams are going to have active just two quarterbacks and they’ll use that 46th spot for a position player or special teams contributor.

It will be interesting to see how all teams handle this.

Early prediction on Chiefs seven inactive players – WR Jonathan Baldwin, QB Ricky Stanzi, DE Brandon Bair, CB Jalil Brown, S Sabby Piscitelli, either OT Jared Gaither or Steve Maneri and either NT Jerrell Powe or LB Cameron Sheffield.


Green Bay Packers rookie kick returner Randall Cobb couldn’t help himself. On Thursday night, despite catching the kickoff eight yards deep in the end zone, Cobb brought the ball out.

He ran 108 yards for a touchdown, tying the league record for the longest kickoff return and putting every returner and coverage unit on notice that despite the new rules on kickoffs, it was still the most exciting play in the game.

Cobb would have been in trouble with Todd Haley if he were wearing a red jersey, brought the deep kick out and only got a few yards on his return.

“If you only get out to the 12(-yard line) or the eight or the 15, no that’s not a smart decision,” Haley said. “My rule is if you bring it out from the end zone you better get past the 20. If you don’t, then it was not a smart decision.”

That’s what Dexter McCluster and Javier Arenas will have to deal with on kickoff returns. They will handle most of the returns as the season begins for the Chiefs.


Claimed on waivers this week, OT Steve Maneri has practiced three days with the Chiefs. But is he strictly an OT, or can he also play TE, his position in college at Temple.

“He’s a guy we were excited about when he became available because he’s somebody we had our eye on last year,” Haley said. “It’s a pretty unique story in that he was a full-time tight end and really has been playing out there as a tackle here only for a year. I think he does have some versatility. He’s 300 pounds plus now, and you don’t see many 300-pounders playing tight end, but he’s athletic and can move around and run. He’s here to be a tackle first and foremost.”

Also new to the franchise is TE Kyle Nelson, who actually may have more of a chance making it in the NFL as a long snapper, something he did for four years at New Mexico State.

“He’s another unique guy that Coach Steve Hoffman kind of spotted as we went through the process in the off-season getting ready for the draft,” Haley said. “He’s got versatility also. He obviously hasn’t snapped in the league; he did it a bunch in college. He also played H-back in college in a spread offense out there and was a productive player that has good size and can run. We’ll just have to see how everything plays out.”


There’s no question that to-date, the 2009 draft class selected by GM Scott Pioli has been a major disappointment. Only seventh-round kicker Ryan Succop has been a consistent and productive performer from that group.

One guy that never got on the field in the regular season was fifth-round choice, former Missouri OL Colin Brown. He spent his rookie season on the injured-reserve list and was then cut in last year’s pre-season. Whether at tackle where he played for the Tigers or at guard he never was able to show he belonged in the league.

Last year, Brown ended up spending a few weeks on the Ravens practice squad, before the Bills signed him to the active roster on December. He made it through the final cut and onto the 53-man roster for Buffalo.

“We moved him to guard and he’s even playing a little center for us,” said Gailey. “He’s a different guy than what we had that first training camp when he was in Kansas City. He’s just a lot more mature and a lot more confident. He was trying to feel his way through the short time I was there with him. I think he’s a lot more confident now and he’s moving better. He seems to have added a step of quickness to himself.”

9 Responses to “Chiefs-Bills Potpourri – Saturday Cup O’Chiefs”

  • September 10, 2011  - Michael says:

    I hope you are wrong about the inactives, Bob. It would be a shame to see Powe, Sheffield or Gaither inactive, but especially Powe and Sheffield. Those guys need to be playing.

  • September 10, 2011  - pharmer says:

    I have a feeling that we are going to see Maneri used as an extra tackle eligible in goal line situations to help pound the ball and later on used like they used to use Vrabel and slide him out for a little quick pass.

  • September 10, 2011  - pharmer says:

    …and how nice would it be to have a long snapper that you could actually get a few more plays out of as a back up tight end?

  • September 10, 2011  - Tenand6 says:

    I’m glad Haley and Crennel had a chance to coach against Gailey last year. Our preparation should be good. We also got destroyed by their QB and our defense should be prepared for him, too. Hopefully, Cassel is reasonably healthy. If so, we really don’t have any excuses to lose to the Bills. They are a well-coached team, but our experience against them should work in our favor in that our talent level appears to be a notch higher and we’re playing at home.

  • September 10, 2011  - Blake says:

    pharmer, I agree, and I think Todd Haley would agree as well. I wouldn’t be too surprised to see this kid brought up from the practice squad to be our long snapper, and also help out as a TE.

  • September 10, 2011  - Chuck says:

    I agree with Michael above. Sheffield and Gaither need to get lots of playing time early if they are going to develop into something good.

  • September 10, 2011  - Niblick says:

    I don’t think Pose will be inactive because he’s our only backup nose tackle. I agree with Bob’s other potential inactives.I would think perhaps Colbert or Battle could be one of the other inactives.

  • September 10, 2011  - Michael says:

    Yes, that’s a more reasonalbe inactive list to me: Baldwin, Stanzi, Bair, Brown, Piscatelli, Battle and Colbert. Take two of those off, and add Gaither and Breaston if their hamstring injuries require more rest. I know Battle is a core special teams guy, but Sheffield could be more valuable.

    Powe is the only backup at NT, and was looking pretty good, and Sheffield is too good of a pass rusher to keep off the field. Hali has a non-stop motor and tends to wear down late in games. Sheffield is the perfect guy to effectively spell Hali, and keep him fresher throughout the game.

  • September 10, 2011  - aPauled says:

    Amon Gordon also plays some NT. Could even see Allen Bailey and Glenn Dorsey play some NT in passing downs or 2 man fronts with another LB. The Chiefs finally have the personnel to take advantage of the flexibility of the 3-4.

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