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The Search Never Ends … Wednesday Cup O’Chiefs

Already the Chiefs scouts have cleaned up after last weekend’s NFL Draft and are working on the class of 2011. The personnel process is a 365-day a year job.

In the days leading up to the Draft, during the three-day affair and in the three days afterwards, there has been plenty of personnel movement. Veterans of all kinds have been released, traded or sliced off their old roster for many different reasons.

Despite the opportunities, GM Scott Pioli and the Chiefs have not pulled the trigger on any trades or signings. There haven’t even been any rumors about their interest in a player until Monday when Jacksonville released DT John Henderson (right). He’s supposed to talk with the Chiefs on Wednesday, an obvious indication that they have an interest in him.

But what about some of the other players that have changed teams or remain available? Why were the Chiefs silent? Why did they not add them to a roster that needs more talent? Let’s discuss some of them:

LB AKIN AYODELE – He was released back in March by the Dolphins and was available until this past Saturday, when he signed with Denver. Certainly, Pioli had an avenue to check on Ayodele and why he was cut loose by Miami where he played two seasons. He joined the ‘Fins after two seasons with Dallas, where he was signed as a free agent by Bill Parcells. The 6-2, 245-pound native of Texas has played both inside and outside, with 630 total tackles, 95 sacks and seven interceptions. He will be 31 in September.

Did he fit the Chiefs? – They need help at linebacker, especially on the inside where Ayodele has played the last four seasons. Based on what happened to him and the Dolphins defense last year, he seems a duplication of players they already have on the roster. Whether he would have helped is something the Chiefs will see up close and personnel, since they’ll play him and the Broncos twice.

G ALAN FANECA – The veteran guard was released over the weekend by the New York Jets and signed on Tuesday by Arizona. Although he was named to the Pro Bowl, Faneca’s age and a decline in his pass protection led the Jets to put him on the street. In Arizona, he got a one-year deal for $2.5 million. This was after signing a five-year, $40 million deal in 2008 with the Jets, with $21 million in guaranteed money. Faneca began his career with 10 seasons in Pittsburgh, where he was a first-round choice in 1998. He’s been to nine Pro Bowls. Faneca will be 34 in December.

Did he fit the Chiefs? – Absolutely. The question is whether the Chiefs would fit with Faneca? He got his big money with the Jets deal two years ago and right now he’s looking for a chance to win a championship. That opportunity does not rest in Kansas City for 2010. Whether it’s a possibility in Arizona remains to be seen, but the Cardinals are closer. Plus, head coach Ken Whisenhunt and offensive coordinator Russ Grimm were both with the Steelers when Faneca was also there. “There’s a reason he’s been selected to the last nine Pro Bowls,” Whisenhunt told the media in Phoenix. “At a time when we’re facing changes on our offensive line, we’re very fortunate to have a player of his caliber coming on board.”

WR TED GINN, JR.
(left) – A former first-round choice by the Dolphins, Ginn’s selections was booed several years ago by Miami fans who wanted QB Brady Quinn. Things never seemed to get better for him after that rough start. He struggled to make an impact, dropped too many passes and raised the ire of some in the Dolphins for his unwillingness to go into traffic for the football. But he returned a pair of kickoffs for touchdowns against the Jets last year and overall averaged 23 yards a kickoff return. Ginn averaged 8.7 yards on punt returns, with a touchdown as well. He caught 128 passes for 1,664 yards and five TDs in 48 games. Ginn was traded to San Francisco on April 16th for a fifth-round draft choice.

Did he fit the Chiefs? – Again, Pioli would have a pipeline on information about Ginn’s last two seasons in Miami. The price to get Ginn was certainly not expensive, as the 49ers gave up pick No. 145. The Chiefs had the 142nd choice; that’s what they used to draft OLB Cameron Sheffield. Had they made the move on Ginn, they might have been able to use that second-round choice that went for Javier Arenas on another player or position.

DL JOHN HENDERSON – When Henderson and Marcus Stroud were paired together on the inside of the Jacksonville defense, they were as tough a duo as patrolled the line of scrimmage in the NFL. Three years ago, Stroud was traded to Buffalo and since then Henderson’s production has not been the same. In the last three seasons, Henderson had seven sacks. In his first five seasons he had 22 sacks. The Jaguars released him on Monday.

The 6-7, 335-pound Henderson is 31 and will be in his ninth season. He made the Pro Bowl after the 2004 and 2006 seasons. Stopping the run is what Henderson has done best over the years, playing both defensive end and defensive tackle. He’s also been pretty durable, missing just four games during his career. He had 423 total tackles, 29 sacks and eight forced fumbles.

Does he fit the Chiefs? Absolutely, Henderson could fit with the ’10 Chiefs, whether they played him at nose tackle or defensive end. He’s no longer the player who made two Pro Bowls, but even at this point in his career, he’s an upgrade for the Kansas City defensive line. Signing him would be the biggest move in the off-season to date for providing help on the run defense.

DT CHRIS HOVAN – The veteran defensive tackle found himself out of a job on Monday when Tampa Bay cut him loose. Hovan will be 32 in May and his production has been trending downward the last five seasons with the Bucs; he’s had just five sacks in those five seasons. He’s played 156 games for Tampa Bay and Minnesota, where he was a first-round choice in 2000 out of Boston College. He’s 6-2, 296 pounds. The Bucs cut him loose because of his lack of production and the fact he was set to make $4 million this season.

Does he fit the Chiefs? – Hovan is more of a Tampa Two-type defensive tackle, rather than a nose tackle. At this point in his career it’s hard to see how much he would produce at defensive endi n the 3-4 defense. On this guy the Chiefs should pass.

G ARRON SEARS
(right) – Released this week by the Buccaneers, Sears’ story is a sad one. He sat out the 2009 season dealing with depression, leaving the team a year ago. Sears has not gotten back on the field with his teammates, although he’s been working out. The team remained supportive until Monday when he was released.

“It’s a sad deal,” said Tampa Bay center Jeff Faine.”I don’t know how much control he had over what was going on, but he’s a great guy, a great teammate, a guy you loved being around. This is just a reminder for all of us of how that no matter how much this game means, there’s more to life than football.”

Sears is a former second-round draft choice of the Bucs in ’07 and started 31 games in his first two seasons. He’s 6-3, 310 pounds and will turn 26 in October. His O-Line coach was Bill Muir, who is now the line coach of the Chiefs.

Does he fit the Chiefs?If Muir thinks so, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Sears at least work out for the Chiefs. If he checked out physically and mentally, Kansas City would be a good place for Sears to attempt a re-start to his career.

LB ERNIE SIMS – On April 19th, Sims was part of a three-team deal that essentially came down to this: the Lions traded him to the Eagles and all Philadelphia gave up for him was pick No. 137 in the fifth-round. Sims will be 25 in late December. He’s played five seasons with the Lions, where he was a first-round draft choice in 2006. He’s played 59 games, with 56 starts and has 420 total tackles, 2.5 sacks, one interception and four forced fumbles. Sims never quite fit the Gunther Cunningham defense of the Lions.

Did he fit the Chiefs?Sims played outside linebacker in the 4-3 defense with the Lions and he’s on the smallish side for the 3-4, at 6-0, 230 pounds. I realize he was part of a three-team move, but if the price that the Lions were looking for was in the fifth-round area, this was a deal the Chiefs should have pulled the trigger on. Whether he fit or not, if Sims was good enough for the Eagles to go after then he would have helped the Chiefs. Maybe they even could have traded one of those Gunther guys that he’s always talking about picking up once they are released in Kansas City.

DT MONTAVIOUS STANLEY – Released this week by the Jaguars, Stanley qualifies under the journeymen definition. He’ll be 29 in October, this would be his fifth season and he’s been part of five different NFL organizations. In that time he played in 33 games with six starts. At 6-2, 302 pounds, he had 53 total tackles and 1.5 sacks.

Does he fit the Chiefs? Any player of Stanley’s size should be considered for work on the Chiefs defensive line. There isn’t much in his dossier that says “sign me.”

LB ADALIUS THOMAS (left) – He was cut loose by the Patriots on Monday, after spending three seasons in New England. Pioli knows all about him, because he was there when Thomas signed a five-year, $35 million deal, with $20 million in guaranteed money.

Thomas had a good 2007, playing inside linebacker and then moving outside when injuries required an adjustment in the Patriots defense. He started in the Super Bowl loss to the Giants. In 2008 his season was cut short by an arm injury and then last year, he was a healthy deactivation for a game in October. Thomas later ran into trouble when he was late for work due to traffic from a New England snow storm. Bill Belichick sent him home as discipline and then made him a healthy deactivation for another game. Things went downhill from there.

He will be 33 in August and has played 10 seasons, with 517 total tackles, 53 sacks and seven interceptions. Thomas stands 6-2, 270 pounds and has played inside and outside linebacker.

Does he fit the Chiefs? – If Thomas is healthy then he should be given a look-over by the Chiefs. Pioli obviously has an inside track to what was happening with the linebacker last year with the Patriots. He’s not the player he was in his prime, but the linebacker position needs help.

DT KEVIN VICKERSON – He’s going into the sixth season of what has been an underachieving career first with the Dolphins, then the Titans. At 6-5, 305 pounds, he’s a big man out of Michigan State. In 24 games he racked up 45 total tackles and 1.5 sacks for Tennessee.

He was suspended for four games in 2008 for violating the league’s policy against performance-enhancing drugs. Vickerson was part of the StarCaps controversy, as he tested positive for a diuretic.

Did he fit the Chiefs?
Not really, given he played in the 4-3 defense. Despite playing for an organization that has developed many defensive linemen over the years, Vickerson was not much of a factor for the Titans in the past two seasons. It’s hard to see how he would be able to roll into the Chiefs defense and make a big immediate contribution

RB LEON WASHINGTON – On October 25th last season, a handful of Raiders defensive players fell on Washington at the end of a run in Oakland. The weight of the group landed so that his right leg was trapped under him. Washington suffered a compound fracture of his right fibula, ending his season.

When he was on the field, Washington was a game changer, producing 6,336 all-purpose yards in 55 games. He was especially potent on kickoff returns, where he averaged 25.5 yards a return and scored four touchdowns.

There apparently were questions within the Jets organization about how far back Washington can come from his injury. He will be 28 in August. Also, Washington had been pushing for a long-term deal with the Jets, but couldn’t come to an agreement; he recently signed a one-year tender offer as a restricted free agent.

Did he fit the Chiefs? – If he were healthy, there’s no question Washington would have been a consideration. But if he were healthy, there’s a very good chance the Jets would have wanted more for him than they got from the Seahawks: pick No. 139 in the fifth round. Either that or they would not have been trying to deal him. Washington is the same size as Chiefs draft choice Javier Arenas, who return-wise has similar abilities. Before or during the draft, the Chiefs would likely have kept their distance because of his leg.

RB LENDALE WHITE – Just 25 years old and already an owner of a 1,000-yard rushing season, White became expendable with the Titans because of the emergence of 2,000-yard rusher Chris Johnson. White also had his troubles along the way in Nashville, where he was sometimes overweight, late for meetings and other stuff that reflected a lack of focus and preparation.

“Why didn’t it work out in Tennessee? I have to blame myself some, I guess,” White told the media in Nashville. “But with that said, it was obviously time for me to move on. I didn’t feel like I could become the kind of player I wanted to become at Tennessee because of past history of things, maybe things that weren’t always right. But I’m not mad about it at all. I get another chance to prove myself.”

White ran for 1,110 yards in 2007 and 773 yards and 15 touchdowns in 2008. Last year, behind Johnson, he ran for 222 yards and two TDs.

Did he fit the Chiefs? – Not hardly; his immaturity makes him very unattractive to the Chiefs. If they had been looking for a short-yardage/goal-line banger, there might have been some consideration, especially since the price was so inconsequential (swapping spots in the fourth and fifth rounds.) But the fact that the Titans were willing to unload him for the football equivalent of a bag of donuts screams plenty of what his new team can expect. Maybe his old college coach in Pete Carroll can handle him.


36 Responses to “The Search Never Ends … Wednesday Cup O’Chiefs”

  • April 28, 2010  - MenInRed says:

    Well Faneca landed in St. Louis for 2.5 on a 1 year deal and they aren’t headed to a Super Bowl so that didnt have anything to do with it as Bob stated.

    Henderson over Hovan could be like finding a diamond in the rough or at least help as another body to rotate in @ NT.

    Back to “In Pioli We Trust” and “The Right 53″.
    Go Chiefs!!!


  • April 28, 2010  - The Morning Fix | Arrowhead Addict | A Kansas City Chiefs blog says:

    [...] The Search Never Ends … Wednesday Cup O’Chiefs-BobGretz.com [...]


  • April 28, 2010  - ChiefMojo says:

    Actually MenInRed, Faneca signed with the Arizona Cardinals.


  • April 28, 2010  - Liontamer says:

    Hope we land Henderson!


  • April 28, 2010  - KC#9 says:

    Of course we weren’t interested in Ted Ginn. The last thing we need is another receiver who can’t catch.


  • April 28, 2010  - Jim Lloyd + says:

    Maybe there’s some small thing in a player’s life that is distacting his abilty to focuss .
    If so , can it be uncovered and dealt with .
    It could be a lot of different thing’s , in some cases not being all you can be , could be devasting ?
    When you are parked on the sideline and finaly get a chance to make a play , How hard would that be . One guy -nothing – another guy – HUGE !!


  • April 28, 2010  - Mad Chief says:

    You have to be wary of cut/released players. For every Chambers…there’s two Goff’s.


  • April 28, 2010  - Jim Lloyd + says:

    When I look at D. Bowe I see nothing but high peformance – supper star . What’s missing ?
    Maybe he’s not on the field enough , like TG was , because TG was blocking somewhat .
    TO and Ocho are always wanting more playing time , do they know somthing ?


  • April 28, 2010  - Eric Hutchinson says:

    A “supper star?” That would be Terrence Cody.


  • April 28, 2010  - ThunderChief says:

    Character counts, good locker rooms are desired and overall attitude is important as well. I get that. What I also get is you win with talent and most of the guys in the NFL wouldn’t qualify as Boy Scout leaders or Sunday school teachers.

    So where do you draw the line? That ‘line’ moves up or down depending on the team and the owner’s philosophy. When it goes too far in one direction or the other, i.e., high character/limited talent vs. questionable or bad character/pro bowl potential, it can bite you either way.

    I think the Chiefs are leaning a little too far to the left in that equation but the 2010 season will tell us many things about the current leadership and talent level of this team.


  • April 28, 2010  - Danny W says:

    Just for his return skills you give a fifth round pick for Ginn every day. Henderson will only be grabbed if agrees to play nose tackle the guy is huge 6’7″ 340 lbs. Run stuffer extreme. I dont think he would fit at outside positions. I wish they would give Glenn Dorsey some stability for heaven sakes leave him at one spot and let him get used to it.

    Side note know we just have to hope there’s no hold out on Berry’s part. He will demand alot of change and the Chiefs wont want to pay a safety that kind of money

    Hope I’m wrong though have a good day all and Thanks Bob


  • April 28, 2010  - jimbo says:

    I’m just glad that I don’ have to make decisions for this team. Sitting back on Sunday afternoons from Sept. to Jan. is always a enjoyable time of year for me. I pray we win each & every game. All I can really expect (hope) is that the Chiefs get better each & every game.
    We all can debate on who or what player position of need will make this team better. At this point & time I can honestly say that our team is on the verge of something special this year.
    The anticipation alone of having to wait until Sept. to see what the “Minds that be” have put together for us, is almost painful. In the meantime, I will continue to read everyones comments on this site & throw in my two cents worth just to aggravate a few of you.
    I may not be right very often & I may be accused, correctly I might add for wearing rose colored glasses & My writing skills admittedly, are at a third grade level. But, you know… I have been entertained by the men wearing Red & Gold for 40 plus years & I would’nt have it any other way.
    Go Chiefs.


  • April 28, 2010  - arrowhead1978 says:

    Faneca still went to a team that isn’t headed to a superbowl, Arizona with Lienart is going to look like the Chiefs with Cassel. I have been hearing alot about Henderson and how he would be a DE in the chiefs defense opposite tyson jackson and Dorsey would be a rotational guy, I dont know what would warrant that change but it still doesn’t sound like it would help the run defense.


  • April 28, 2010  - KCnDC says:

    I’m willing to accept the risk of a rookie (Arenas) taking on the return duties for a few years and believe he is a better fit because 1) he’s got mad skills on the defensive side of the ball (outstanding corner blitzer) and 2) as KC#9 stated, we don’t need another receiver with lead hands!


  • April 28, 2010  - MenInRed says:

    oops, my bad. it was the card’s


  • April 28, 2010  - alex k says:

    there are a LOT of things to consider when signing a player to a big contract Bob…why not discuss who is still around, and not dwell on the past.

    Mccluster is our Ginn but he can catch…arenas is the returner version…we’re good there…I take Asamoa over Fanaca with Lila involved on the asamoa side…

    as for linebacker, we have some guys we like, belcher, mike johnson…


  • April 28, 2010  - alex k says:

    sears? hes a nutcase…bob..why is it you seem to have a negative spin on many chief articles now…its..”pioli made a mistake”…yeah well I guarentee if you put your list up against our list of signed/drafted we get better production in 10/11


  • April 28, 2010  - gorillafan says:

    alex k,

    I dont think he is being negative at all. Just his opinion, thats all. Was our draft different than most thought? yes! And for Sears, he said if Muir thinks so, not him. I personally dont give 2 shits who we get, just freakin win, ya know!!


  • April 28, 2010  - gorillafan says:

    …….and the reason I dont care is because alot of the time I am wrong in judgement who we sign, draft, try out, ect. Just for example, last year I thought Zack Thomas and Toomer would really contribute to the team in leadership and on sundays and help us win…..and look how that turned out!!


  • April 28, 2010  - arrowhead1978 says:

    really gorrilla, lol… Yea I wasn’t so sure about Toomer, he had the most catches I believe for the Giants WR’s the year before, I didn’t think he would have fell off that much, now Thomas on the other hand was already washed up before he got to Dallas…

    I really didn’t get that Bob was dissing Pioli and crew with this article. A little bit of inside info on some players that were available and why the chiefs didn’t even sniff at em. The chiefs should pick up the next LB that is cut from a team though, they need LB’s badly, unless they plan on starting Johnson this year!!


  • April 28, 2010  - el cid says:

    Sometimes we get to wrapped up in name, favorite players. They have to fit the system and there needs to be a need because they will be on a roster that is not limitless. There is more to it but not everyone you want fits the Chiefs.

    Haley needs his kind of guy not your favorite MU player (see poster on Chief’s home site). That said some moves are a mystery to me. It will all work out and I am hoping for a improvement over 09. Maybe even 7-9 which almost doubles the results from last year and the playoffs by ’12.


  • April 28, 2010  - johnfromfairfax says:

    Jimbo,

    We’re all GM’s when we put in our two cents worth but hey, that’s the beauty of this. None of us are accountable for what we spew. I’m sure I speak for others when I say that I always enjoy your take on the goings on of our Chiefs. Keep it up. P.S. I think you underestimate your writing skills as much as your football acumen. you’re at least on a 4th grade level like the rest of us!


  • April 28, 2010  - gorillafan says:

    HUH?, my first comments didnt post and my second one did that was in relation to my first post. SORRY,

    anyway, my first comment was to alex k,
    and in short, I said that I dont think Bob is being negative, just a different opinion, but not bashing negatively and also said I dont look into who we get or dont get because you never know how they will turn out and I and wrong alot of the time……., then for some reason my second post actually posted to the site. I hate when that happens!!


  • April 28, 2010  - Jim Lloyd + says:

    Cassel is in need of a little more time to throw , whitch is what he’s got , he is NOT known for interceptions , and the running game they have will only make him into the ball movement guy that I think he is .
    No comparison to Lienart .
    I’d just like to see KC win the Div…


  • April 28, 2010  - el cid says:

    Jim Lloyd. Cassel in NOT known for his pinpoint accuracy and may be some of the dropped pass problem.

    Would like to see KC win Div also but realistically see at least SD and Den as team with more potential to win Div. Heaven help us, if Oakland changes starting QB, even they might be ahead at least for this year.


  • April 28, 2010  - gorillafan says:

    I hate to say it, but Oakland is kinda turning the tide like we are. I think the armpit of the NFL, in the AFC West, will be alot tighter this year. I see us gaining and San Diego slipping with 3 teams getting alost equal in the middle. Huh, who would of thought if we get our shit together we could go to the playoffs!!


  • April 28, 2010  - gorillafan says:

    My comments didnt post it again!! Short version AGAIN, is that I see us and Oakland both turning the tide and Chargers slipping back. The armpit of the NFL, the AFC West, will be in a battle all year with any of the teams winning the West. We really COULD make the playoffs this year and that shouldnt be a “dream” either!!


  • April 28, 2010  - el cid says:

    It is just that the Chiefs have not addressed their some of their shortcomings. SD released LT drafted a RB, Denver cut C and traded Wr, drafted both. Will they work out, don’t know but they got bodies who play the position. We sort of missed the boat at NT, LBs, and, I feel, at WR. Of course the season will tell the tale but with nobody at the positions, it is hard to see us getting real close to the rest of the Div.


  • April 28, 2010  - gorillafan says:

    well, I hear ya on that one el cid.

    Maybe there will still be some signings, and im sure there will be!!!! Also, im sure Romeo has evaluated our players, “on tape”, and maybe they like what they see somewhat. Maybe they want to coach them and not let someone go just because of the past. We all agree we sucked, but MAYBE getting TALENT and GAME CHANGING SPEED was at the top of the priority list for them and wheeling and dealing FA’s after the draft and coaching the players we have now, properly, is the best way we need to go……We will just have to wait in see!


  • April 28, 2010  - el cid says:

    Coaching may impact the Chiefs more than the draft picks. Last year was a “lost year” in about every aspect. Bad vet free agents, draft was not very good, and coaching, well, let’s just say questionable. This year Weis, Crennel, and team speed and character for a draft. Major pluses if you ask me.


  • April 28, 2010  - gorillafan says:

    Im surprised to see you changing your opinion this year. Last year, well we both know how much you disliked the regime last year……ha


  • April 28, 2010  - el cid says:

    Last year I did not realize the bad coaching staff Haley put together. Add to that the 09 draft with players who could not get on the field with a team who only won 2 games the year before. Lastly the secrecy Pioli operates with, well, what did you expect? I guess you can teach an old dog new tricks…..still Pioli/Haley first year is nothing to be proud of except for surviving it. And I am reduced to saying the Pioli plan which should take 2 more years is a waste of talent and time.


  • April 28, 2010  - St. Paul 1 says:

    Hey gorillafan-

    The same thing happens to me quite a bit – I write a brilliant (in my mind) comment, and it doesn’t post. Quite frustrating.


  • April 28, 2010  - Jim Lloyd + says:

    139 days till 9:15 on the 13th –>
    A lot can happen here and with the other Three teams . At least after shifting all the card’s there will be good all around football .
    The tougher the Div. , the more it going to take to win it all .
    Starting to look interesting .


  • April 29, 2010  - MikeO says:

    I’d like to see them pick up Sears and make a trade for Barry Cofield NT of the Giants


  • April 30, 2010  - Warpaint says:

    Thunderchief – I think you read too much into the words Pioli/Haley say, when describing their ideal player.
    Yes, they put emphasis on character. That doesn’t mean they’re only looking for “boy scout” types.
    They want players with talent and abliities, and intelligence. At the same time, they want guys who aren’t afraid of getting mean and mad, WHILE they’re on the field.
    In other words, as has been described recently, they want the player to be as tough, mean, and nasty as they can be on the field, but leave that attitude in the locker room when they leave, so that they’ll be law-abiding, productive/positive members of the community.




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