Odd Approach To Consistency … Cup O’Chiefs

Maybe I’m just slow. Could be that I’m hard of head. Maybe I’m just not very smart.

But I don’t quite understand why Clark Hunt fired his head coach on Monday.

Oh, I heard what was said. I sat there in the front row and listened to 20 minutes of explanation from Hunt and his GM Scott Pioli. Essentially what I understood to be the reason for Todd Haley’s termination was a lack of consistency in the play and production of his team.

Consistent was the root of all the descriptive phrases Hunt and Pioli used for the firing – consistency, inconsistent, consistent, as in the Chiefs played with no consistency, they were totally inconsistent in their production and performance, at no time this season have they been consistent.

OK, so if the consistency of the team was poor, how does firing the head coach correct that? Shouldn’t the reaction be to stabilize the situation, rather than create a host of changes that come with firing the team leader?

Where does consistency grow when there is the natural turmoil of a new man in charge, old ways changing to new ways, patterns disturbed, plans changed? I don’t understand how any of that makes it easier for the Chiefs to get ready to play the unbeaten Green Bay Packers?

But Clark Hunt said that’s what the change was all about.

“We felt the inconsistent play that the team had experienced through the season including during yesterday’s game made today the right day to do it,” Hunt said of the termination. “We want to give the guys a chance to finish the season on a high note. Mathematically we are still alive in the playoffs and we wanted the guys to go out and face the Green Bay Packers and play to the best of their ability and felt that change was important at this time.”

Huh? What I hear being said is that the team couldn’t play to the best of their ability if Haley was the head coach? That didn’t seem to be the problem earlier this season when the Chiefs won four consecutive games. Even last week, when they ended a losing streak with a victory over the Bears in Chicago, they seemed able to play to the best of their ability.

So, one week Haley was a good enough coach, and another week he was not, so the decision was made that he would not be a good enough coach the next three weeks, so it was time to boot him to the curb.

Consistency is not achieved by significant change with three games to play in a football season. Consistent football comes from having talented players who spend many games and practices working together, perfecting their craft under the watchful tutoring of talented coaches.

It was consistency that earned the Chiefs a division title last year, and that was built on two years of hard work by a core group of players and coaches. So what was different this year? Where did the consistency of the Chiefs go?

Hunt can blame himself for a large part of it; due to the NFL owners’ lockout, there was no off-season, no mini-camps, no nurturing of young players and improving their skill sets. If you want to create inconsistency, then take away team time together for an up and coming club.

Consistency went racing off the depth chart with the knee injuries suffered by SS Eric Berry, TE Tony Moeaki and RB Jamaal Charles. Then there was QB Matt Cassel’s season ending hand injury. It’s Pioli’s job to build the roster and there were not holders of roster spots who were capable of picking up the slack; not at safety, or tight end and certainly not among the running backs and quarterbacks.

When a team lacks talent and has to play against other players and teams, you’ve got the perfect conditions for inconsistent play.

There is no question the Chiefs took at step backwards this season. The players they had on the field were not as talented as those that were in action last year. Lesser talents, less proven players are inconsistent by nature because they are struggling to keep up.

And there is very little a head coach can do about that. Clark Hunt should not have fired Todd Haley, not if stability and consistency are his goals. Words have meaning and Hunt has said over and over he wants to be like the Steelers.

But Pittsburgh would not fire a head coach after 46 games. They would not make a change for so-called inconsistent play. Chuck Noll had a 14-32 record after his first 46 games; Haley was five games better. At one point in his coaching career with the Steelers, Bill Cowher was 20-26 over a 46-game span. He was not fired.

Young Mr. Hunt has made a mistake in terminating the employment of his head coach. If he wanted consistency, he should have stayed out of the way.

51 Responses to “Odd Approach To Consistency … Cup O’Chiefs”

  • December 13, 2011  - Milkman says:

    Haley seemed to be daring his bosses to pull the trigger. It’s been clear the last couple of years that Haley marches to the beat of his own drum. I for one liked the beard, dirty hat, and the faded jacket on game days. The only problem was they didn’t come with victories. I really think the players wanted their head coach to succeed, but they’ve had five blow-out losses so far. Had those same losses been competitive, Haley likely would have at least lasted til the end of the season. And I’m guessing Hunt probably was embarrassed when his head coach got that unsportsmanlike penalty Sunday. I do aggree with Bob that this does not show consistency on Hunt’s part. Sad for all of us older Chief fans who have seen this way too many times. It’s hard for me to get excited about the next guy coming in. With the Chief’s past practices, the only question is when does he get fired?

  • December 13, 2011  - Donald says:

    Nice article. It didn’t and doesn’t make sense to me either. “Let’s throw a major monkey wrench into our team by firing the head coach just before we play the most dominating team in the league and we’ll say it gives us the best chance to win.” Huh?

    Anyone got a copy of the clip of Lombardi saying “They can’t compete with the NFL” (I’m paraphrasing a bit) that he said during the Super Bowl I post game interviews? Might be appropriate to run it again after Sunday’s game.

    OK, over the top, but sometimes it’s hard to continue to be a Chief’s fan.

  • December 13, 2011  - PAChiefsFan says:

    With the flow of the offseason disrupted by the lockout then the plague of injuries that hit the team coupled with the lack of depth there is no way this team was going to be very successful this season. I think the players believed in Haley and fought hard but the lack of talent caught up with them. To say that Todd was the cause of the lack of consistency is laughable. Now the question is where do they go from here. Who is going to want this job. I have heard McDaniels name kicked around. We have seen he couldn’t handle the Denver job so it would be a mistake to bring him in here. Pioli says he needs to be held accountable too and has to do his job better. Well his neck better be on the block next if he doesn’t hold up his end of the bargain.

  • December 13, 2011  - bhive01 says:

    All this means is that the inconsistency wasn’t really the problem. It was what we all knew it was… Haley didn’t get along with his OCs and Pioli.

  • December 13, 2011  - johnfromfairfax says:

    We’ll see what happens but I couldn’t agree more with the Milkman. We’ve seen this dance way too many times. Bob is absolutely right regarding jerking the rug from under your young coach at this point. We are in a rebuild that got ahead of schedule last year due to some good breaks and took a step back this year due to some bad breaks. I know there are Haley haters and those that liked his approach but it’s really irrelevant what we thought of him. Look at a couple of the most successful coaches that he and Pioli worked for. Very few fans or scribes felt warm and fuzzy with Parcells or Belichick but they’re both very successful due to being given the chance to develop their team and philosophy. It’s obvious that removing Haley was based more on the bad chemistry with Pioli and less to do with the reasons given and I hope that Hunt doesn’t start the revolving door syndrome that we see all too often in poorly run teams. Remember too that the Steelers had a similar situation very much like this with somebody many are wishing would consider our vacancy now. Cowher and Tom Donahoe didn’t see eye to eye and things may have turned out very differently there if the Steelers had fired Cowher.

  • December 13, 2011  - txchief says:

    It’s pretty simple. Managemnt thought that the inconsistent play was due to the head coach. Haley is widely recognized as an uncooperative megalomaniac who has to have it his way all of the time. The problem is that his coach skills don’t merit his attitude. He ran off Tony G. and planted the seeds of discontent with Brian Waters almost instantaneously upon being apppointeed the head coach. and that’s not even mentioning the string of OCs who could not wotk with him.

    I hope that the Chiefs bring in a more proven commodity this time. I don’t think that Cowher is a possibility because he wants to be the HC and GM and will only go where there is a “good QB situation.” I hope that the talk of only hiring someone with a connection to the Patriots organization is incorrect. Jeff Fisher or Brian Billick wojuld be good choices that should bring some stability to the organization. I think there would be a fan furor if the Chiefs hired a new coach without head coaching success in the NFL at this point.

  • December 13, 2011  - Bryon says:

    Bob: Yours is the first post I’ve read that lists Hunt as accountable in the present debacle of a season. He seems to be getting a general pass as opinions vary about whether Haley or Pioli are to blame. I entirely agree that the Chiefs have a paper-thin roster, were in no position to withstand injuries, were unusually fortunate last season to avoid injuries, and are paying a huge price this season for personnel decisions that effectively kept about $30 million more dollars in Clark Hunt’s pocket. Over the last three years – Haley’s tenure – the cap has been underspent about $100 million (approx. amount). That’s about what Hunt spent to renovate Arrowhead, right? Hmm… Poor rich guy. Sounds to me like typical corporate b.s. So Haley is the fall guy, having been asked to win with a roster of players lacking enough quality starters or any decent depth by NFL standards. But did Hunt instruct Pioli to underspend the cap by $100 million over three years? Or was this Pioli’s brilliant idea? I think Hunt and Pioli are very much alike, in this together, and pity the next head coach who is their victim, not to mention the longsuffering fans and players on a team whose ownership and management are not committed to winning (they were in years past). One saving grace: The new collective bargaining agreement stipulates that every team must spend 90% of cap next season at minimum, and at least 95% thereafter. Perhaps this is the only thing that could separate Clark Hunt from his money.

  • December 13, 2011  - Kenneth says:

    Pioli and Clark Hunt simply didn’t want Haley around the team any longer, one article I read on the KC Star indicated that Haley had talked of resigning after the season was over because of the way he was being alienated by them.

    Perhaps they heard about those comments and decided to can Haley before he quit and therefore could stipulate that he keeps his mouth shut.

    I have thought that Pioli should be fired more than Haley but the boss rarely gets fired when the employee is available to take the fall.

  • December 13, 2011  - ED J says:

    Everyone knows firing of Haley had nothing to do with him coaching more to do with fact him and Pioli didn’t get along. The ultra control Pioli wants to have on head coach is what got Haley fired. They didn’t want Haley to go out win 2 or 3 more games didn’t wouldn’t look very smart firing head coach who won 6 or 7 games without starting QB,rb,TE, and safety. This had way more to do with relationship than it did consistency. Bob makes very good points in team not upgrading oline in offseason. Not upgrading tight end or safety position behind Lewis and Berry.

  • December 13, 2011  - RW says:

    Hunt Jr. made his money the real old fashioned way: He INHERITED it. And with it comes unbridled power to make decisions and choices without any grounding of what it takes to be successful in terms of risk taking and letting those with expertise in a given field be free to do it. How much of a free hand does Pioli have under Hunt Jr., and, by extension, did Haley?

    Could it be that Pioli arrived at a mindset that if Hunt Jr. was willing to pay him $Million$ annually, then he, Hunt Jr. could meddle all he wanted? Short of evidence to the contrary, a case could be made along these lines. Let’s say that’s true.

    Then the owner is the major problem and a problem that won’t be solved until the owner goes away. It’s pretty clear that Hunt Jr. is in over his head. Until and unless he steps away totally OR completely backs off to allow those football folks do their jobs, the Chiefs will remain what they are at present, a dysfunctional mess.

    Then, there’s the track record of Pioli who was vastly over rated by most everyone in NFL circles, the media and fans. Did he slip on the Hunt Jr. golden handcuffs or is he simply incompetent to be a NFL GM? Either way, it ain’t workin’ under his watch.

    Summing up, it matters not who the next head coach will be because the head of the snake remains the same. A sad reality for a once proud franchise and a feared opponent. No mas.

  • December 13, 2011  - ED J says:

    txchief don’t spew out crap you don’t know. Haley didn’t run off Tony G he didn’t want to be part of rebuilding process go read book War Room which clearly backups conversation Pioli had with Tony G. Brian Waters was let go due to his play dropping off and us having a young stud in Asmoah wanting him to get on field. I hate when fans make up junk about Haley that’s totally false just because they may not have liked the guy. Did Haley makes some mistakes yes but at end of the day he helped developed alot of the players on this and will someday go somewhere he has support of GM behind him and be successful head coach. As for Pioli he better learn how to get along with next head coach and not be picking guys solely on relationships. He better pick someone that is leader of men and quit all the micromanaging.

  • December 13, 2011  - Tenand6 says:

    Consistency is much easier with a franchise QB. Consistency is difficult when pro-bowl talents are on crutches.

    Scott Pioli and Clark Hunt have created a dysfunctional organization and Haley was just one of many victims.

    Scott Pioli leads by withholding information. He leads by being unavailable to the media. He leads by staying tens of millions under the cap. He leads by blindly following what he thinks is “The Patriot Way.” He leads by assuring all pens will be accounted for at the end of the day.

    Being consistently petty, rigid and insecure doesn’t lead to consistent, positive results. They lead to consistent inconsistency, consistent anxiety and consistent rumor mills.

    Another thoughtful and well-written column, Bob. Everyone should tell all Chiefs fans to subscribe.

  • December 13, 2011  - Tim says:

    Nice article Bob. I believe you hit the nail on the head. Haley needed to change, but the talent he was given had virtually no chance of performing consistently after all those injuries. This is in a large part Pioli’s problem because of his personnel decisions. I respect the guy, but until he shows me he can CONSISTENTLY acquire quality talent, he’s “Meathead”. I also respect Clark, but until he acquires some CONSISTENT public passion for the team, he’s now “BEAN COUNTER”.

  • December 13, 2011  - johnfromfairfax says:

    Hopefully we’ll hear from you soon regarding your thoughts on the possibilities for the next head coach. We need some level headed insight to add to the dreamers and wish lists that we are hearing from now.

  • December 13, 2011  - txchief says:

    I neither like nor dislike Todd Haley. His attitude and results just speak for themselves….

    …And where does all this secret knowledge of the nefarious plans and deeds of Hunt and Pioli come from around here? Doesn’t anyone remember the altercations with Gonzalez and Waters that happened soon after Haley arrived. The incidents were well publicized.

    I’m all in for a competent, strong leader as a head coach for the Chiefs because I hope to watch a winning team soon.

  • December 13, 2011  - Mike says:

    In their entire history, the Chiefs have had eleven head coaches. Only two of them (Stram and Marty) had winning records. What’s wrong with this picture?

  • December 13, 2011  - the other dave says:

    txchief–the tumultuous relationship between coach and gm has been a part of the national football discussion for some time now. Simply because it wasn’t as publicized as spats between players doesn’t make it so.

    Haley should still be coach. We had a winner on our hands and we released him after seeing him fail with a rag-tag group of players assembled by a cheap owner and gm. Name a coach who could succeed after the injuries the Chiefs have sustained this season.

  • December 13, 2011  - Chuck says:

    Bob; One of your best viewpoints ever. 100% correct on all counts. Way too many KEY INJURIES to have any serious chance this season. The way I look at it is Pioli is admitting that his hand picked man Haley failed him. Well then that makes Pioli a failure too. Maybe Hunt should have fired Pioli too. Pioli has way too big of an ego if you ask me. And one last thing, how many national titles does Ferentz have now??????? Zero.

  • December 13, 2011  - dfwchiefsfan says:

    I’m as disenchanted with the front office as everyone else. And while I think Haley would be a great guy to have a beer with, it seems he’s shown that he:

    a) isn’t a capable enough manager and strategist to be able to simultaneously run a team, and put together an offensive game plan / call plays,


    b) can’t coexist with the caliber of OC it takes to win at high levels

    Pioli saw this before the season ever started. As head coaches go, it’s a fatal flaw.

    At the same time, what GM ever comes out with the real reason they fire a coach, especially when it’s rooted in fundamental, individual weaknesses that would make Pioli look like a career assassin if he pointed them out?

    With a good offseason, this team can win next year, so why stick with a coach you’ve lost confidence in? IMHO, you can’t create consistency, it either happens or that don’t; people that try tend to create mediocrity.

    Clark proved he’s willing to pony up top dollar for key hires – ala GM – so let’s give him a chance to show he’s ready to win. A $6MM coach could do a lot with this talent, esp if they keep Crennell.

  • December 13, 2011  - Justin says:

    TXCHIEF, you omit the fact that several players on this roster have developed way more from Haley’s coaching.
    It goes to show when the black marks on your resume are T.O. and his ilk and the good marks are Larry Fitzgerald, Keyshawn, Warner, Breaston, DJ, and Bowe.

  • December 13, 2011  - Donald says:

    One thing I will add. I had grown tired of the inconsistency of play. I never knew whether the Jeckyl or Hyde Chiefs would show on any given Sunday. We can shut out the Raiders in their house, beat the Chargers at Arrowhead, then get blown out by the winless Dolphins 31-3 in our house. That is squarely on the coach and his preparation, both game planning and motivating. While Haley may have little input to the talent level or depth on the team, getting them ready to put forth a consistent effort, week to week, is the responsibility of the coaching staff and ultimately the head coach. I seriously doubt Pioli or Hunt spent enough time in the clubhouse to have an effect on the team’s weekly play.

    Another area that is the head coaches responsibility is setting a system in place to get the play call in to the QB in a timely manner. How many times have we seen the QB standing there looking at the bench waiting for the call? (Frankly I think a good, leading, franchise QB would call his own play if he didn’t have one from the bench by the time the play clock wound down to 20-25 seconds)

    Also remember, we’ve been through 3 OC’s in the last three years, another area where inconsistency will hurt a team. Again, that comes back to the head coach.

    I do think the plug was pulled too early. Haley had his shortcomings. Some of it is due to his inexperience. I do not doubt he will get another opportunity and will probably do better the second time around. Remember, the Patriots are Belichick’s third team as HC. Few get it right first time out (and many of those are coaches coming into successful programs where the head coach has retired). Yes, I know Harbaugh is the exception this year – new coach, new system, no off season work – maybe there was more talent on that team to begin with and it just needed to be handled better. Hmmmm food for thought.

    Finally for those commenting on the low payroll, if memory serves, next year there is a salary floor as well as a salary cap. We may be near the salary floor, but it we spend it on mediocrity, that is the responsibility of the GM since he does the contracts.

  • December 13, 2011  - leonard says:

    TXChief, you are a complete and utter moron. Haley did not run off TG. Nor did he run off waters. Get your stories straight . Haley did not sign players, he did not draft players, he did not pick all his coaches, he didn’t cause the lockout, he didn’t leave the chiefs devoid of any talent, he didn’t keep the Chiefs 29 million unde the cap.

  • December 13, 2011  - el cid says:

    txchief, I get the feeling you are just talking to get your 15 min. of attention. I seem to remember post that caused thought, now repetition, tote the company line.

    As for the rest, Haley’s gone. Get over it. Hunt/Pioli are not going anywhere, get over it. Crennel can only hope the Chiefs do not embarrass themselves like against the Jets, there is not much on this team. The Chiefs are actually worse than the winless Colts. We will get at least 3 years of Pioli’s non-verbal crap, leopards do not change their spots.

    So, who is going to be the starting QB? Will Crennel continue to use Mc as a RB, especially up the middle, a smerf trying to run thru red woods? Will the defense show up? Will Succop actually make contact with the ball?

    There is nothing left to worry about, at least this year.

  • December 13, 2011  - txchief says:

    I don’t dispute the fact that Todd Haley helped develop some young players, after all that is part of his job. I, and no one posting here, knows how much input Haley had in drafting or signing certain players, but I feel confident that no NFL team would shut the head coach out of all personnel decisions.

    I am still wondering exactly what players the Chiefs should have signed that would have really changed the unfortunate chain of events this season. Please name them, everyone!

    It is merely my considered opinion that Haley underperformed as the head coach and his personality likely put himself at odds with others. That is why I believe it was time for him to move on.

    …And by the way, those who toss around epithets are the ones who paint themselves in a bad light.

  • December 13, 2011  - Rowan says:

    Yep. Bob is worth more than the subscription price for sure. As someone wrote some time ago, maybe it was Bob, Hunt needed to take his young-in-position high potential kids and tell them to work it out or they were both gone. That’s how a skillful boss does it in the rest of the world when two whiz kids are gumming up the works with their conflicts. Haley’s big problem is that he seems to be a very straightforward communicative guy caught in an organizational maze of silence and deception. As a Chiefs fan from game 1 I will pull for them even when they likely don’t deserve it, but I’ll alway also root for any team Haley is associated with. And I’m not ready to toss Paoli overboard just yet. He and Hunt are also relative newbies as per TIG. Will wait to see about their learning curves.

  • December 13, 2011  - Randy says:

    I think Haley did a decent job with what he had to work with. The disaster that has been the 2011 season rests on the shoulders of Scott Pioli. It boils down to one reason and one reason only….the Chiefs DO NOT have enough talented players. You have to give Haley or any coach TALENT to win in this league. It’s not done by “the right 53″ if they are “the non-talented 53.” I’m not saying the Chiefs have no talent but they simply don’t have enough in the right places. Until this team gets a truly talented QB mediocrity will continue to rule at One Arrowhead Drive.

  • December 13, 2011  - el cid says:

    None of us should think Haley did not have a hand in his downfall. He accepted the job with Pioli’s hand directing the direction of the Chiefs. I believe he signed off of most actions, either by agreeing or by doing nothing of a nature to stop action/inaction. But the bottom line is, I believe, he thought he was smarter than other HCs. He “knew” the way to do it, even without enough talent to support it. So he took the money, prestige, and whatever, and did a basically piss poor job for the fans. He paid the fate of all HC who just go along, make no waves, and agree to be the human shield for management.

  • December 13, 2011  - Steve says:

    Bob – great article. I haven’t seen anybody else point out Chuck Noll’s or Bill Cowher’s records as young coaches. That is good perspective. I heard Kevin Harlan say this morning that he couldn’t recall two people more different in deportment and manner than Haley and Pioli. And that situation almost always dooms the junior person in the mix. I look forward to your thoughts on who is being considered as Haley’s replacement.

  • December 13, 2011  - el cid says:

    By the by, the next HC, will he have enough cojones to stand up to Pioli/Hunt and demand more talent. If a Pioli buddy, just glad to be here and do what Pioli expects….or will we get a HC who intends to win superbowls, with or without Pioli help?

  • December 13, 2011  - Niblick says:

    I heard Haley is one of the candidates for the Arizona State job. I just don’t see him as a college head coach. I guess he could cahange his sidline demeanor and be more in control. I really think he will probably wind up getting another OC job or another position coach job. Young coaches who are fired early in their careers are not usually rehired as head coaches very quickly or at all. The exception was Jim Mora Jr, but he only lasted a year in his second job.

  • December 13, 2011  - Marc says:

    What a disaster.

  • December 13, 2011  - marcel chagoyan says:

    It’d obvious. Haley didn’t play by Pioli’s rules. When you don’t do what your boss wants, guess what, you’re fired.

  • December 13, 2011  - Rick says:

    Personally I think Hunt and Pioli just scapegoated Coach Haley.

    Hunt wants a winner now, but won’t spend money and isn’t patient enough to do it through the draft. Plus Pioli’s track record in the draft has been pretty damned mediocre.

    Pioli wants to be the big dog, but won’t admit to putting together a substandard roster. He want’s a bootlicker for a head coach but still expects the players to respect him. This is bullshit!

    Our starting lineup is full of holes and obviously we have nothing for depth! Pioli demands that Cassel be the QB, but the guy isn’t a championship caliber QB!

    Again, this is bullshit, and Haley got scapegoated!!!

    Hunt isn’t holding himself or his GM accountable, this is a farce and beyond pathetic!

  • December 13, 2011  - Tenand6 says:

    A franchise QB cures all ills. Is Scott Pioli willing to admit betting the farm/franchise on Matt Cassel was a mistake? Pioli should get a “learning curve.” He’s too well paid and credentialed. It is shocking to see his first decisions crash and burn:

    – Shut out scouting staff for first draft;

    – Picking a head coach he can’t work with;

    – Designating Matt Cassel the QB of the future;

    – Tyson Jackson (who has evolved to be a good DE, but not great) and the rest of the draft was awful. We got a kicker; and

    –Pens (can’t help myself).

    Beyond that we’ve seen active undermining of his own coach.

    Get a franchise QB, Scott. He will save your job.

  • December 13, 2011  - Flyboy26 says:

    Excellent article Bob, and right on point. Haley’s dismissal reminds me of Marty’s dismissal from San Diego. I’ve been an avid supporter of the Chiefs since they arrived in K.C., and Haley’s firing is a new low. When a corporation fails, the fault lies with the management nearly 100% of the time, not the laborers. It’s too bad that the Chiefs aren’t owned by stockholders and run by a board that could fire the management.

    I disagreed with many Haley decisions including his choices of OC’s, his role in selecting the right 53, who he played on any given Sunday, and some of his game planing and other decision- making. However, I strongly believe that Haley has the intelligence and desire to develop into a great coach. There are very few, if any, coaches with the level of experience that Haley possessed, who stepped into a HC job and immediately performed excellently, with the level of talent that the Chiefs possess. Though I have been very disappointed with the teams success this year, I was willing to give Haley the Chance to succeed. What fans fail to recognize and accept is that great teams are not born overnight, just like “Rome was not built in a day”.

    My respect for Hunt and Pioli has diminished considerably, but I’ll be a Chiefs’ fan for as long as they remain in my hometown of K.C.

  • December 13, 2011  - COCHIEF says:

    Owner, General Manager, Coach – all have played a role in the current debacle.

    Clark needs to fully invest in better Chiefs players.

    Scott needs to acquire quality starters in obvious positions of weakness and adequate backups. I’m tired of him bringing in a constant stream of players that are unemployed and have been cut by several teams in the past. In particular, we will always need a quality, experienced backup quarterback.

    Our head coach must have the self confidence to hire top quality coordinators and assistant coaches. He must be a strong, capable leader that inspires his players and sells them on buying in to his approach. He needs to be flexible and creative in using available players when injuries occur- and in developing strategic game plans tailored to individual opponents.

    They need all to be working together as a team and to be BOLD rather than conservative in action. And they need to be open, honest and communicate regularly with their fans.

    The above is just common sense.

    My message to all of them is that they have potentially the best fans in the league. Provide us a top quality, competitive team and the respect we deserve. Otherwise you are going to continue to lose your most important asset.

  • December 13, 2011  - brainsmasher says:

    I neither like nor dislike Clark Hunt. It’s his team. He ok’ed the move for Herm to clean out all of the dead weight and then fired Herm and Carl when Pioli became available.

    I like the out of the box thinking of Todd Haley; and the players actually seem to like him and he brought out the talent of Bowe and Derrick Johnson. I saw no evidence of the team quitting on him.

    I saw him quit on the team by continuing to run Tyler Palko out there. His decorum on the sidelines with both players and coaches was abysmal.

    Haley is supposed to be this offensive guru. The offense was horrible in year one. Enter Charlie Weis and the offense takes off. Exit Weis and we witness this historically bad product. This belongs in the same category as what Turner Gill did over at KU.

    I could take 11 guys off the street and get blown out 5 times.

    Pioli hasn’t shown me any sign that he is the genius of the draft that he is supposed to be. I don’t like the way he let Herm twist in the wind; and he hired an ex golfer to be head coach that never played at any level. Yeah, that was going to work.

    To sum it up there is enough blame to be shared by all parties for this stinking turd; but Haley was begging to be let go and it was the right decision.

  • December 13, 2011  - BigJimInWisconsin says:

    Great article, Bob! I agree with you on all your points. I was pissed off all day yesterday. I was thinking the same thing about consistency (or lack thereof).

    I wish Coach Haley well. I believe that he did the best he could with what players he had available to him. Almost all coaches at this level are egotistical. That’s how they got there.

    At least I’ve got this Category 5 Super Team up here to distract me from the mess in KC. The Packers have drafted well and developed well. And they’re consistent! Many doubted Ted Thompson and his abilities because he did things his way as GM. Look where that got them. No doubters anymore. I hope Pioli knows what he’s doing.

    I also hope the Packers don’t score 72 points on us Sunday.

    Doh CHIEFS!

  • December 13, 2011  - Morten says:

    Great article Bob; I totally agree…. Up until that weird “dinner in chicago” question at last weeks press conference I honestly believed that Pioli would be that smart and extend Haley for 2 more years and shut up all rumours….. After that question… You kind of know it was put out there, youjust knew, and Haley knew, that it was over… But Oh my god this is a bad decision… Todd Haley will win a SB one day; and it will probably be before the Chiefs!
    If Pioli brings in the McDaniels-kid!!! I really don’t hope he does; 3 more years and both he and McD can hit the road; and we will be back to square one… consistency; thats excactly what all the good teams are about; and clearly we aren’t and will not be among those for the foreseeable future!!
    Really a sad week for the Chiefs!

  • December 13, 2011  - Bobber says:

    This reminds me of another situation where we fired a head coach because the GM thought the team wasn’t reaching its potential. After the Chiefs fired him, Marv Levy took the Bills to 4 super bowls and is in the hall of fame. I think Haley is an excellent coach and will find success if he gets another chance. I could never understand the intensity of the anti Haley comments that didn’t seem to based on anything at all. Now people want Cowher? Talk about crazy sideline behavior! I wonder what part fan discontent with Haley, for whatever reason, had in his firing.

  • December 13, 2011  - jim says:

    If memory recalls, Pioli was a ‘late’ hire, and consequently Haley was a late hire as well. If Pioli wold have had two more months, and before several other HC were hired, Haley may have not been here at all. When he finally hired a HC, Haley was probably (conjecture) not his first choice, but only the best choice at the time given what was left at the dinner table.

    Pioli will never hire a HC that he can’t keep under his thumb. To much ego. If he does, the I will abmit that the leopard CAN change his spots.

    Don’t look for it.

  • December 13, 2011  - James B says:


  • December 13, 2011  - Chris Mabrey says:

    KC Media: why where the chiefs bad?

    Chiefs: inconsistency

    karen kornacki: but what about injuries and lack of depth?

    scott pioli: that’s my bad, but it’s whatever, you know…inconsistency

    Bob Gretz: Can you give me an example of inconsistency?

    scott pioli: …um…inconsistency.

  • December 13, 2011  - el cid says:

    jim I agree. But Pioli is all about his own comfort zone. Nothing happens fast with this guy. He takes his time if the guy is no longer available, to bad, Pioli must chew it up over and over. Because of that the Chiefs may well be doomed to failure as long as Pioli is here. A GM not on the top of his game and having to think and rethink over and over, NEVER, pull the tigger and there is no success at any level. MIA may have dump their HC to get ahead of KC, guess what, they will get a “name” HC and Pioli will still be thinking about it all.

  • December 13, 2011  - iwriter says:

    I am not sure what is up here but I do know that Bill MOss on 610 reported that he talked with many coaches and players on Arizona and no one wanted to work with him. He had a bad reputation around the league. He said he had numerous sources. Maybe that is the reason why were unable to sign any free agents… Just food for thought. I do like this website however we must keep in mind that Bob Gretz has had it in for Pioli since he came here and cleaned house. He disagreed with some of the personal moves. Sorry but these people needed to go as we were a losing team for many years. OUR PROBLEM HAS BEEN WE ARE TOO MUCH LIKE THE PITTSBURG STEALERS AS WE KEPT THE SAME PEOPLE AROUND FOREVER WHO WERE NOT GETTING THE JOB DONE. Examples Peterson and the staff evaluating talent. I think I agree with the poster that said that Bob needs to get over the changes here. I like Bob’s Opinions alot but on this one I think his judgement is flawed. Remember the 15 years after our superbowl team got too old. We had plenty of consistency but we were losers til marty got here along with Peterson. So consistency is not the real issue..talent evaluation is the issue. Nobody wanted to be here on this team with Haley because of his reputation plain and simple.

  • December 13, 2011  - txchief says:

    I think Hunt should give Pioli another year. If he blows the draft and fails to sign enough talent to round out the roster and build some depth, Pioli should probably go too. You never know what will happen. If Hunt wants a coach/GM like Cowher badly enough, he just might let Pioli go before the draft and free agency begins.

  • December 13, 2011  - iwriter says:

    Woops I am sorry I was not clear who I was talking about in my post above… Bill MOss was talking about Haley and his reputation around the league. Players talk and word gets around. Maybe that is why we could not sign too many free agents. Even Vrabel when he said he was interested in a coaching job said that he would never work with Haley… I can find the quote if necessary…

  • December 13, 2011  - rufus says:

    mssg to hunt; weak sauce bud

  • December 13, 2011  - Johnfromwichita says:

    Hunt is a soccer fan, oops, owner. Dosn’t have a clue about football. Wrong guy fired. Fire Pioli.

  • December 14, 2011  - TWC says:

    Maybe Clark should have had Scott take the Wonderlic test before he was hired. I also believe that the wrong guy was fired. Great article and thanks Bob.

  • December 14, 2011  - Craig says:

    Great Article Bob! I too believe Haley will get another chance. Gotta be able to work with your boss or you loose your job. That is life lesson 101. Everyone forgets that Pioli worked with Bellichek. I dont think he had the authority to let him go on a whim and Bellichek has a good size ego as well. Everyone loves a winner. If Haley had won he would be here today. He did not so he is out. I liked Haley and wish him well. I too believe he will suceed elsewhere. Go Chiefs.

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