Mental Edge On Injuries … Friday Cup O’Chiefs

The smile was barely contained on Glenn Dorsey’s face.

It’s been a long time since anybody was so excited about getting back to an off-season football practice.

But on Thursday in the Chiefs OTA session, Dorsey was able to work with the full squad for the first time since the workouts started. No longer was he exiled to the rehab field.

“I’m so glad to be off that field and back in practice,” Dorsey said afterwards. “I’m telling you, there’s nobody that wants to be on that (rehab) field. Nobody.”

Not surprisingly, the Chiefs are taking on the attitude about injuries that stems from the Bill Parcells School of Coaching. Parcells doesn’t have anything written down, so to paraphrase the Big Tuna’s thoughts on injured players is this: he doesn’t believe in them. If there’s not a bone sticking out, or evidence of a ligament being torn in half, then it’s not an injury.

Muscle pulls? Forget about it. Sprains? You’ve got to be kidding. Sore? No kidding, take an aspirin and get back out there.

There is no question that injuries are part of the game of football. There’s also no question that teams that win divisions, conferences and Super Bowls tend to have fewer players sitting out because of football related health problems. Conversely, teams that don’t win tend to have injuries that have lengthy rehab periods.

There are ways to combat the minor injuries that come with the game of football, and that’s what Todd Haley has been drilling his team on since this off-season program started.

That’s why after practice on Thursday, the Chiefs ran and ran and ran. That’s why the team has lost 338 pounds since the start of the off-season program. That’s why players who can’t participate because of injury end up working harder on the rehab field than the guys in the practice.

What Haley is trying to do is build strength, build endurance, but also build a mindset that overcomes the sprains, pulls, bruises and contusions that come with the game.

On Thursday, QB Brodie Croyle, RB Kolby Smith and DT Ron Edwards were not the only players who had physical problems on the field. They were the ones that had to rehab with the strength and conditioning coaches. There were players in the practice who probably in another year or situation would have been watching and not taking part. DT Tank Tyler is bothered by a sore knee. He spent a few days on the rehab field, but hasn’t been back.

Nobody wants any part of that field.

“It doesn’t look like a lot of fun,” Haley said of what happens on the rehab field, “Which is the idea. (Dorsey) He has been working really hard over there and he has been chomping at the bit to get into the action.

“Quite frankly, that is the way we like it. We would like it to be a little more fun to practice than to be on the rehab field.”

Those players forced to rehab generally start out on stationary bikes. But they aren’t just cruising through the pedals, reading a magazine or watching soap operas. Coaches Cedric Smith and Brent Salazar stand there with a stop watch, timing their work and effort. After that, they may push a weighted sled contraption for awhile, or pick up a barbell or hand weights and carry them the length of a football field, and then back. There can be sprints and longer runs around the field.

Everything is done under the supervision of Smith and Salazar, so there’s no shirking, no goofing around and no cutting corners.

There’s also no fun.

“It’s miserable over there,” said OLB Turk McBride, who spent a few early practices on the rehab team due to his surgically repaired shoulder. “You work harder than you do in practice, but you aren’t in practice. You don’t get anything football out of it.

“It’s necessary, but you don’t want any part of that bike patrol.”

So far, and that knocking sound you heard was Haley finding a piece of wood, the Chiefs are just a week away from the end of their off-season program and they’ve not suffered any major injuries. Or even in this case, any debilitating minor injuries. Edwards would be the only exception. His injury has never been identified publicly, but appears to be an upper leg problem.

Of course, all of this comes without real football having been played or practice. When bodies collide, injuries happen with far more frequency. That’s doesn’t really come into play until training camp, which figures to be more physical than what the Chiefs have experienced over the last three years.

But Todd Haley is hoping that a well-conditioned team both physically and mentally, won’t feel the pain quite as much, or quite as often.


Speaking this week, United Football League Commissioner Michael Huyghue said the league that will begin operation later this year with a four-team, six-game schedule, would welcome the disgraced Michael Vick, but they aren’t interested in the disgraced Pacman Jones.

“To the extent that Michael Vick becomes available we will look very closely into bringing him into our league — not only because our fan-survey poll was abundantly in favor of allowing him to come back but because we think it might be the right kind of buffer for a player like that to go back to the NFL,” Huyghue told Clark Judge of “He’s certainly an exciting player, and there will be a lot of interest in him. But the protocol is to wait for him to be released from his NFL contract. If he is, we will undergo measures to see if we can get him to play in our league.”

The NFL has made no decision on Vick’s future in that league and won’t until his home confinement is over and his sentence on the dog fighting charges is completed.

Pacman is another matter.

“I think that would be difficult,” Huyghue said. “On the one hand to say Michael Vick could come in and Pacman couldn’t (that) might seem a bit contradictory, but I think we have to look at each one — and I think the coaches will set the tone for that.

“For example, (New York coach) Ted Cottrell said his first priority is that he doesn’t want any bad apples. I’m not trying to demean Pacman Jones. I happen to know him to some degree from a personal background. But, in general, those aren’t the players we’re looking for.”

Here’s a link to the whole story.


BILLS – released OL Joel Bell, LB Blake Costanzo, DT John Faletoese, DB Kyle Ward and DE Gerald Washington.

BRONCOS – released WR Travis Shelton, LB Braxton Kelley and OT Marcus Gordon.

BUCS – signed fifth-round draft choice OT Xavier Fulton.

CARDINALS – signed seventh-round choice G Trevor Canfield.

EAGLES – agreed to a new contract with QB Donovan McNabb, released QB Adam DiMichele, RB Rashard Walter Mendenhall and DT Amon Gordon.

JAGUARS – released CB Will James and TE Charles Davis.

JETS – released TE Martrez Milner.

PATRIOTS – released FB Patrick Pass, signed fourth-round draft choice OL Rich Ohrnberger,

REDSKINS – signed draft picks LB Cody Glenn (5th round) and FB Eddie Williams (7th round).

TEXANS – agreed to terms with QB Rex Grossman (Bears).


Born on June 12, 1934 in Kirbyville, Pennsylvania was C Jim Barton. A member of the original Dallas Texans, he played in 14 games during the 1960 season. The next year he moved to the Denver Broncos where he played for two seasons.

22 Responses to “Mental Edge On Injuries … Friday Cup O’Chiefs”

  • June 12, 2009  - Scott says:

    Glad Dorsey is finally on the field, too. Hopefully, this year he can start to become the player he was expected to be…and is PAID to be.

  • June 12, 2009  - Dan says:

    I think most guys who played football in school can remember the coaches that would motivate you to play. I also remember one coach who did not care and it reflected with the team. It was like a spreading cancer. Looks like to me our new coach is one who players would enjoy playing for and winning.

    Thanks Bob!

  • June 12, 2009  - Scott says:

    Dan says:
    “Looks like to me our new coach is one who players would enjoy playing for and winning.”

    Except for Brian Waters, that is. Ha!

    I think the bottom line is…players want to win. And I think they recognize the fact that Haley can potentially be a winning coach. Haley seems to expect a lot from his players. And so far, for the most part, he’s getting it.

  • June 12, 2009  - Chad says:

    Hi Bob. You wrote that the Eagles released RB Rashard Mendenhall. I thought he played for the Steelers? Is there another Rashard Mendenhall that also plays RB, or did play RB, for the Eagles?

  • June 12, 2009  - Rip 'em a new one says:

    Chad says:
    Hi Bob. You wrote that the Eagles released RB Rashard Mendenhall. I thought he played for the Steelers? Is there another Rashard Mendenhall that also plays RB, or did play RB, for the Eagles?

    re: the above. Typo on Bob’s part. FYI, Eagles released RB Walter Mendenhall. (I haven’t heard of this one, either).

  • June 12, 2009  - ILChiefsFan says:

    Walter Mendenhall is Rashard’s brother. He played for a while at the University of Illinois but then had a falling-out with Ron Zook and transferred to Illinois State (Boomer Grigsby’s school).

  • June 12, 2009  - anonymous says:

    I was just reading something about the Chargers are looking at running some of this goofy “wildcat”, using LT. That’s all fine and good, but for the life of me, why the hell do D coordinators not move a safety out over the QB, with instructions to knock him on his ass as soon as the ball is snapped.

    It drives me crazy to see the DB just run off leaving the QB either standing at the line of scrimmage or run a few yards down field and stop, totally unmolested. That’s dumb. Hit the bastard, hard and often. Won’t take many of those before coaches will realize the folly of putting your QB in harms way. Same thing if they line up as a Half Back, Knock the hell outta of him!

  • June 12, 2009  - Rin Tin Tin says:

    “Not surprisingly, the Chiefs are taking on the attitude about injuries that stems from the Bill Parcells School of Coaching.”

    - au contraire; it’s the Vince Lombardi School of Coaching – to quote former Packer OL Jerry Kramer on Lombardi: “pain is in the mind.”

    As in a spirit broken & remolded? Rin wonders out loud as he wanders: ‘so does that mean success is in the genes Vince?’

    Yes, with an assist/or 40 other healthy parts Bart, Hornung, Nitschke, Wood, Adderly, Davis, Willie & McGee, Max, et al.

    Kramer on Lombardi addressing fellow Packer DL Lionel Aldridge: “Aldridge that is not a weight bearing bone” (this in answer Aldridge’s desire to sit out practice; the abiding sentiment of a Packer: “he treats us all equally – like dogs”; so Vince wasn’t a member of the human society.

    Alas, the difference or at least the biggest?

    The Chiefs have no Lombardi or even a poor man’s same Parcells … we’ve only a wing and a prayer – aka ‘search’ & ‘check.’ That they embrace “any 22″ (il)logic be the truest indicator that as to imitation, 2nd & 3rd generation copies are never as great as the original.

    Lombardi is legend…Parcells a bad zerox copy… ‘check’ is a Wang computer.

    That ‘check’ & ‘search’ ’09 try to operate like Lombardi did and Parcells et al sought to mimic (in word if not reward afield) be more of a nod toward following the leader than a trendsetting any – really no different than the first guy in line turning to the next and saying “psst! pass it on.” By the time it makes it to the last man it is substantially become diluted to the point of being almost a non sequitur. In this Lomardi was as a real life doctor, Parcells and all the rest just play one on TV.

    Now Herm Edwards, there was a coach & a guy who had the Chiefs on the right track. Alas…jerks from the knees same sabotaged his efforts. Soon enough they shall see just how wrong they were, and that impatience is not a virtue…cue Clark and the Outsiders: ‘time won’t let me-ee-ee-ee- wait that long.”

    Change Jr.? Because, why exactly? Sounded like a good idea at the time, ye$?

    As in how much is that doggie in the window, the one with the waggly tail nee the grass is always greener on the other side the coaching turnstile nee flavor of the moment?

    Reference the watered down ’09 Chiefs version of Lombardi by way of borrowing from Star Trek’s Mr. Spock: Sometimes Clark – “having” is not as much as “wanting”.


  • June 12, 2009  - jimbo says:

    Interesting read on the “rehab field of misery”. I was grinning from ear to ear as I was reading it. Sounds like if you have an injury and can’t play with the big dogs, you go to rehab camp & do drill after drill listening to a couple of trainers that are on your a$$ all day. No milk & cookies for being a good boy. I like it… I like it alot… No more fake injuries, no more mamby pamby whining crybaby BS.
    NFL football has the best of the best, the mans man kind of game. Bone crunching hits & tackles, now thats entertainment…
    Good to see we have a Head Coach that will separate the Men from the Boys.
    I am really starting to warm up to the “Man called Haley”
    Thanks Bob, That was a very enjoyable story.

  • June 12, 2009  - arrowhead1978 says:

    The “Man called Haley” who has never played a day of football in his life, just College Golf…

  • June 12, 2009  - Scott says:

    arrowhead1978 says:
    “The “Man called Haley” who has never played a day of football in his life, just College Golf…”

    Which means…what exactly? That he can’t be a good coach because he never played? Bullsh*t. He seems to have done pretty well so far in his career.


    Our former Head Coach DID play football. And just how well did THAT work out for us?

  • June 12, 2009  - RedandGoldRice says:

    I just met Scott Pioli at KCI and shook his hand. He was a very cool dude. VERY cool!! Thats my claim to fame for now.

  • June 12, 2009  - Scott says:

    RedandGoldRice says:
    “I just met Scott Pioli at KCI and shook his hand.”

    Was it firm…or limp?

    His handshake, that is.

  • June 12, 2009  - SG says:

    “Was it firm…or limp?

    His handshake, that is.”

    *is now very concerned about Scott*

    “TEXANS ““ agreed to terms with QB Rex Grossman (Bears).”

    Somehow I doubt the fan base likes the transition in backup QB from Rosenfels to Grossman.

  • June 12, 2009  - RedandGoldRice says:

    My hand wasn’t crushed, but he wasn’t limp by any means. I was throughly impressed with him. He didn’t try to hide or ditch me. I told him he didn’t know me, but I’d recognize him anywhere and that we were very excited to have him here in KC.
    Now I’m wishing I’d asked him for an autograph, but I didn’t want to push it.

  • June 12, 2009  - alex k says:

    how can anyone NOT like Haley as a chiefs fan…this guy is the real deal.

    Dorsey needs to get back and get going

    As for vick/pacman, I dislike vick, but I understand why they would take him, one incident up against 12 is daunting.

  • June 12, 2009  - ED says:

    Glad to see Dorsey back. Hope he can come in learn the defense and make a bigger impact along that line this yr.

  • June 12, 2009  - Scott says:

    SG says:

    “Was it firm…or limp?

    His handshake, that is.”

    *is now very concerned about Scott*

    No need to worry, bud.

    Just an old joke…to lighten the mood a little.

    Besides…a man’s handshake can be very telling. Seriously.

    Very cool, RedandGoldRice…very cool. You should have told him to come to if he needed any good advice. Ha! And I’m excited to have him here, too. I think most Chief’s fans are. Until he proves me wrong…I’m gonna’ BELIEVE! And to hell with the naysayers!!! Give the man a chance to do his thing…will ya?

  • June 12, 2009  - True Red & Gold says:

    It is good to hear that there are no injuries to date. I do wonder though, if that means they just are not going that hard in practice?

    Bob I appreciate your upbeat reports, I really do. They have pretty much the same tone to them as last year only last year you were chastised for supporting the coach or putting him in a good light. I am glad to see that you are now doing the same for the new guy.

    anonymous says:
    That’s dumb. Hit the bastard, hard and often.

    I am pretty sure that you are not allowed to hit the QB in this league!

  • June 13, 2009  - Rin Tin Tin says:

    Scott says:

    RedandGoldRice says:
    “I just met Scott Pioli at KCI and shook his hand.

    Was it firm…or limp? His handshake, that is.”

    - limp, just like RedGoldRice, Scott’s & Jorge’s blogs every, any…as in “22″.

    (PS) Hey ‘search’, you just hit the lottery: the aforementioned three blind mice are your prevent defense 2009 Chiefs!


  • June 13, 2009  - Big Lee says:

    If the QB lines up as a WR, he is not a QB. He can catch a pass, run a reverse, or whatever. The NFL desperately wants to put pink dresses on QBs to protect its “investments.” I agree with the original poster. Hit those guys. I can’t imagine what rule would protect someone lined up as a wide reciever.

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