Tyler Will Decide Starting QB … Friday Cup O’Chiefs

The questions flew pretty fast at Todd Haley on Thursday afternoon. Practice was over and the turkey was in the oven back at Casa Haley, as he looked forward to a Thanksgiving afternoon with his family.

But first there was the daily feeding session with the media horde and despite the holiday, the press conference room at the Chiefs facility was crowded with people that all had questions about the newest member of the Chiefs, QB Kyle Orton.

For 13 minutes, there was a central theme to most of the queries – how soon will Orton be in the starting lineup? If not this Sunday night against Pittsburgh, then will it happen in the next game against Chicago? The ascension of Orton to the starting role appeared to be fait accompli in the minds of the assembled scribblers, yakkers and hairdos.

“You get an opportunity to add a guy to your roster that obviously has played a bunch at his position, as a staff and an organization it was a no brainer for us with the situation we were in, just from the depth standpoint,” Haley said of the reasons the club put in a claim for Orton on the NFL waiver wire when he was released by Denver on Tuesday.

Haley never really had an answer for those questions about when Orton would be in the starting lineup. In fact, he threw a bit of a wrench into the situation. According to the head coach, Orton’s first start in red and gold depends on one man – Tyler Palko.

“I have full confidence in Tyler, and I know the team does and he has to make progress off his start last week,” Haley said. “There were a lot of really good things that occurred and we plan to build on it this week.”

Unimpressed as most were by the performance of Palko in his first NFL start last Monday night, Haley found much to be happy about with his backup QB-now starter. In essence, the job is Palko’s and if shows improvement and the offense comes a long for him, then expect No. 4 to remain in the huddle, no matter the presence of the more experienced Orton.

“Absolutely, absolutely,” Haley said when answering a question about Palko being the deciding factor on whether Orton starts any of the final six games. “I made that clear to Kyle. It will depend on Tyler. He’s worked hard, he understands the offense, there was a lot to be encouraged about and I’m excited to see progression Sunday night. That’s the No. 1 focus overall for us and for me, Sunday night.”

So why Orton? Other than the fact starter Matt Cassel was definitely done for the season with his right hand injury and was placed on the injured-reserve list, there are dozens of other quarterbacks on the street, including plenty with starting experience.

“When we made the decision to go in this direction, I think it was just a good business decision for us,” Haley said. “We are planning on playing good football and it would not be a real good decision to not give ourselves some depth. He’s an experienced guy that has won a bunch of games. That’s where we are right now.

“We have been scouring through free agents out there since the injury occurred. We needed a quarterback and it worked out quite well for us.”

And while the media horde seemed ready to start a quarterback controversy before Orton even walks in the door, Haley seemed genuinely happy with the addition and happy to let Palko continue to run his offense.

“He is a smart guy,” Haley said of Orton. “I was very clear to him what he was coming into. Tyler was the starter, but the guy that gives us the best chance to win will always play at any position. Tyler understands that. That’s what we try to do on a full-time basis here. Great competition and depth, that’s how you get better as a team.”

29 Responses to “Tyler Will Decide Starting QB … Friday Cup O’Chiefs”

  • November 25, 2011  - bhive01 says:

    I hate to spend that much for the guy and not use him if his skills are at least on par with Cassel if not greater. I’d like to see how he gets on with our three B WR’s. Tyler probably deserves a shot, but a poor performance on Sunday will probably doom him to the backup position again so he’d better bring his A-game. I hope the whole team does. An upset win would be A-mazing.

  • November 25, 2011  - RW says:

    I’m so over all the PC crapola that continues to spew from Haley at these press conferences. Anyone with a pulse knows Palko is nothing more than a noodle armed scout team practice QB if that. The fact that Palko was the primary backup QB in the first place underscores the myopic vision of Haley and Pioli when it comes to putting together a roster.

  • November 25, 2011  - ED J says:

    Guys its called coach speak all head coaches going to back their player through media. I mean you lose locker room bashing your players. So what I’m getting at is Haley just showing support for guy he has to start Sunday night. After he plays awful again against Steelers Orton will start vs Bears. Hopefully Stanzi at very least stays #2 Qb.

  • November 25, 2011  - el cid says:

    RW, I agree but thought the positive spin over Orton would have lasted a little longer. Still with parity in the NFL, there is a chance against Pitts.

    Did anyone notice during the games yesterday, the players seem bigger, stronger, and maybe faster than anyone on the Chiefs? Need I add, a whole lot meaner than anything in KC. Usual family arguements about all that is the Chiefs but seemed there was agreement there is not much good happening from Hunt on down.

  • November 25, 2011  - Tim says:

    el cid… An astute observation. The composition of a Haley team has more emphasis on movement, etc. than many other teams. This leaves much less margin for error in blocking schemes, etc. on Offense. Its a matter of having the player sit the scheme. On defense, just look at many of the other successful 3-4s. Their LBs are bigger & they blitz more & they blitz with different combinations of people. We seem to come with primarily Hali. Our ILBs aren’t as big as some other 3-4 ILBs – especially Belcher.

  • November 25, 2011  - el cid says:

    I never could understand the Chiefs management decision to switch to the 3-4. They did not have the players to play it and have not added DL who excell in the 3-4 (do not count Gregg as anything useful), maybe Houston but one out of seven in 3 years is not exactly supporting the concept? It is a mystery to me.

  • November 25, 2011  - Chuck says:

    The Orton move really boggles ones mind. It would be completely different if we were truly in the Playoff hunt. But lets get real here, we are not. After getting blown out by Miami, losing a close one to a very inept Bronco team and get massacred in New England do you really think this team is bound for the Playoffs. Get real!!!!!!!!

  • November 25, 2011  - ED J says:

    I think trying show fan base they are committed to winning. Its clearly PR move. Because if organization was thinking long term they wld allow Stanzi to play. At very least see if he can be long term answer and at least with the losses we wld secure top spot if he flames out. But hey will see how it goes it makes us interesting story if nothinf else

  • November 25, 2011  - cychief24 says:

    EddieJ- let me help you out here. Stanzi couldn’t beat out Palko and Palko sucks. Can you understand that? The Chiefs have 3 home games left with 2 being on National TV. They need to sell tickets and keep us doops that actually attend the game to show up to those games. If they put a QB out there that is worse than Palko some of us will be “no shows” for these games. STANZI CAN’T BEAT OUT PALKO. That means he is worse than Palko, not a future starter.
    Thus Orton is brought in so that us season ticket holders actually still show up Sunday Night on NBC and Xmas eve on CBS.
    For next year I hope Clark/Pioli spend part of the now $27.5 million under the cap to keep Orton as a solid back up to our Pro Bowl starter and then draft and sign O-liners at LT-C-RT to help him have time to get the ball to the weapons we have.
    In addition we need to sign and draft pass rusher and ILB.

  • November 25, 2011  - napahank says:

    I watched the Turkey Day games with my analytical buddies and they enlightened me about a couple of reasons why Orton makes sense to pick up.

    1st-It keeps him OFF the Bears team when they face us in a couple of weeks. 2nd-It gives us insight into the Broncos when we face them again (if per chance)a division race is in the mix. 3rd-It shows that we are not throwing in the towel only behind 2 games with 6 to go (Pioli would get crucified for that) and 4th-It gives us a “quality” QB if we are still in the race (with plenty of cap space still)

    Chief fans know that if by some miracle we won the AFC West (remember NFC West in 2010) we would probably get killed in the first round. I for one don’t want to go hog wild and experiment and lose out the remainder just to draft higher. We are already testing out young guys.

    Finally, we rewatched some Broncos games from last year when Orton had his FULL compliment of receivers and he throws an accurate, tight spiral and is excellent at hitting receivers in stride even if he doesn’t have a gun for an arm.

    Conclusion-no down side so why not?

  • November 25, 2011  - Tenand6 says:

    The Orton move is a no-brainer. The Chiefs will play the best player and Orton will be there very soon. From what I’ve seen, I’d take Orton over Cassel. Hopefully, the Chiefs will use their first pick on a QB and move the franchise ahead.

    No downside to Orton. None.

  • November 25, 2011  - cychief24 says:

    Those wanting a QB drafted in the 1st round this year do not understand football.
    No QB ever born could succeed behind that offense line.
    And we need a pass rusher to compliment Tamba. And an ILB to help DJ.
    Drafting a QB after those gaping holes are filled in a year or 2 would then make sense.

  • November 25, 2011  - ED J says:

    Ok and Brady was 4th string with the Pats so does that mean he was worst than guys ahead of him. Palko is ahead of him due to knowledge of play book. And know one is disagreeing with decision that team made read the blog. I said same thing you did

  • November 25, 2011  - ED J says:

    For those of us who dont know football i didnt see Colts taking lineman prior to drafting Manning. Nor did I see Bucs take lineman before getting Freeman. Same with Stafford and Lions. Anyone knows get Qb 1st the other stuff you can build around. Ask Dolphins how having Jake Long is working out for them instead of getting Matt Ryan

  • November 25, 2011  - cychief24 says:

    So EdJ, you’re back to your stance of claiming Freeman, Sancheez and Flacco are franchise QB’s?
    Did you watch Stafford on Turkey day?

    Oh and Brady was 2nd string as a rookie, ahead of Micheal Bishop and behind Bledsoe. Sorry to let facts get in the way of you flaking one of your points ;)

    I don’t have a problem a problem drafting a QB (although with Cassel and keep Orton we are solid there) AS LONG AS Clark/Pioli address the gaping holes on the O-line, lack of a pass rush, and ILB… FIRST.

  • November 25, 2011  - ED J says:

    First off Brady was 4th qb behind michael bishop and friez he wasnt 2nd string until his 2nd yr where he took over for Bledsoe. If you spent as much time research facts as you do always trying contradict what im.saying you actually wld not look silly when you open your mouth

  • November 25, 2011  - ED J says:

    Secondly not Sanchez fan but he has more playoff win than our Qb. And he made plays in playoffs that led to 2 afc cmpnshp apperances. Freeman has done more with less than any other Qb in the league. And Stafford in limited action is leading his team to over .500 record not bad for guy who only has started 7 games

  • November 25, 2011  - TDKC says:

    You think maybe the Chiefs front office wants to trade Orton?

    Maybe they can get a package deal/trade going during the draft. I guess what I’m saying is; Orton is just commodity. He was available. Can’t hurt to take long look.

  • November 25, 2011  - johnfromfairfax says:

    I’ll put my hip boots on and wade into this as well. Those of you that hate Cassel, love Stanzi or want anybody else including a savior young franchise QB to come rescue us and put us in perpetual contention have to see the other weaknesses many point out week in and week out. For whatever reason the organization (that’s primarily Hunt and Pioli) haven’t addressed them through free agency or adequately drafted to solidify them. There have been plenty of free agents who have signed elsewhere (even in our division) and draft choices we didn’t pick who have been successful other places and would have really strengthened our team. Add to that the revelation that Hunt/Pioli have left a lot of money sitting in the wallet during that period and you have legitimate reasons to complain. I’m a loyal fan from way back but I see what most see and don’t like the fact that the only times I saw us play in the Super Bowl were when I was a young boy. I too would like to see us play deep into the playoffs again during my lifetime. Those are reasons to have a beef with the ownership/management. Having said that some of the discussion is just silly. You don’t throw in the towel in professional football with almost a third of the season left to try and get a higher draft position or to see how your young inexperienced guys are going to pan out. To paraphrase a former prominent world leader some may remember that’s just “cloud cuckoo land” talk. I’d love to see a franchise QB like Elway, Brady or Manning come along as much as anybody else but they are extremely rare and have you noticed the teams that perenially draft QB’s only to see them fail and never make it in the NFL even after great college careers. Even with those that do you have to have the other parts that make a team better to go with them or you’ll lose. Football really is more of a team sport than most others. I’ll put it simply and quote a former coach for you guys that can’t wait to give up. “YOU PLAY TO WIN THE GAME!!!!

  • November 25, 2011  - cychief24 says:

    Edj- So basically you’re an all the blame/credit goes to the QB while he controls how the players around him perform. It’s all him.
    So why didn’t Dan Marino win at least one Super Bowl? Why didn’t John Elway win one or more in his prime instead of at the end with diminished skills?
    How many rings does Dan Fouts own?

    Is Eli Manning better than Cassel? His career QB rating is 81.6 compared to Cassel’s 83.3.
    Could it be the ’07 Giants had more talent around Eli than KC had in ’10 and this year?

    I guess we will have to agree to disagree.

    From your sofa you want a rookie QB and the rest will take of itself. But see when the Chiefs game is over you turn the channel and grab another beer.
    Sunday night I will drive back 3 hours replaying every missed block by Richardson; every play Weigmann get tossed back into the QB/RB; that time in the game when Albert quits trying; every time the Steeler ball carrier goes one way and Belcher goes the other; every time Tamba almost gets the QB with a strangle hold on him while the other D-lineman are playing patty cake; etc; etc. I’ll get home around 3am and get up 3 hours later and go to work.

  • November 25, 2011  - el cid says:

    ED brought up a point some may miss, the PR side of Orton signing. What would the fans have said if they played Stanzi and he was worse than Palko, the way the roster shows. We are frying Pioli and Haley over hot coals for T Jackson, attack of the smerfs, no free agents, Palko as a starting QB, et al. What would we say if Stanzi was a bust for the last 6 games? How do they sell tickets next year? Who would want to see tickets for Cassel, Palko, and discredited Stanzi?

  • November 26, 2011  - Craig says:

    WOW!! All good points. The last time we had a consistently good team, winning for several years, we had good defense. We have not had a solid defense since Marty left. Defenese wins championships. Until Mr Hunt fixes this, we will not win. Go Chiefs. Orton good short term fix for fan base and gives us a chance to win. Good PR.

  • November 26, 2011  - ED J says:

    I’m not saying you just need QB and if you have below avg players everywhere else you’re going to win. The point I’m making this team has very good players all all skill positions. The oline is weakness at right tackle and center but so is QB. If you look around the league you need an very good QB to succeed. And yes Eli is better than Cassel go watch how he plays the position. Stop looking at stats which sometimes can be misleading and overrated. I’ve watch Eli carry the Giants this season without a run game. I don’t hear Giants fans complainting about their team losing because they don’t have run game. I also watch him carry Giants missing #1 target Nicks this season. My best friends is huge Giants fans so I know just as much about their team as I do Chiefs.

    Back to my point. Cassel IMO is a very good back up QB. Can you win with him yes if everything is perfect you can but this isn’t a perfect world so why would you think you NFL team is going to be perfect SERIOUSLY !!! So yea if this team had a good to elite QB we would be significantly better. I’m not saying don’t address other positions of need on this team only saying upgrade the most important position 1st. Oline you can address in free agency or in 2nd or 3rd round of draft. Even 4th round. Get 5star Qb. You mention Marino and Fouts last I checked those franchise were consistent winner last I checked we are not at this point. Those teams did get the guy at QB they just failed to build around him like teams like 49ers and later in Elway career Broncos did. But you have get QB 1st then begin to build around that’s only point I’m making.

    As for Stanz my point is alot of people high on this kid lets see what we have. If he truly hasn’t grasp enough of playbook to play then find condense the playbook he’s certainly better option than Palko. And fans care about winning if teams win fans will pack the stadium. I’m glad we got Orton will see how it goes with him.

  • November 26, 2011  - cychief24 says:

    Edj- Like I said we will have to agree to disagree. You are in complete denial that Cassel was a Pro Bowl QB that led us to a 10-5 record last year. (Croyle was 0-1 when Cassel missed ONLY ONE GAME from appendectomy). Last year KC was far from perfect. He was not a one year wonder either. He went 11-5 with the Pats.
    I have seen Stanzi play and heard him talk for 4 years. He is VERY flaky and immature. There is a reason he was projected to be a 2nd rounder and fell to 5th.

    Enjoy the game from your sofa.

  • November 26, 2011  - ED J says:

    No Cassel was part of us winning last yr. He played kind of season Alex Smith is playing. Jamal Charles was the engine behind this offense last yr. We ranked #1 in rushing and bottom of league in passing. Cassel is game manager not play maker I as Chiefs fan dont want game managet at Qb anymore I want playmaker. No way you gone convince me Casssel talent is as good.as Charles. If you think that you crazy. I.want a elite Qb like.we have a elite running back.and receiver

  • November 26, 2011  - cychief24 says:

    Can you read? Or are you so myopic that you just can’t get past your hate for our 2010 Pro Bowl AFC West Champion QB?
    I never said Cassel was a better QB than Charles is a RB.
    Let’s just agree to disagree, OKAY!
    I want 3 O-lineman, a pass rusher, and an ILB addressed through Free agency and/or the draft before we go after another QB.
    You want a QB right now because you think that is the only position that matters.
    Enjoy the game from your sofa. I’ll be in the front row of the Upper level pounding the ribbon board for our defense every play. On offense I’ll be trying not to puke.

  • November 27, 2011  - ED J says:

    OK why you keep throwing pro bowl around like its validates you as a good QB. Derek Anderson made pro bowl when Romeo Crennel ran Browns team in 2007 that didn’t make him good QB. Seriously if 2010 pro bowl and Afc west Champion is you only argument for Cassel being good QB you’re hopeless you like Tebow guy in Denver who wants to throw around Tebow record like it validates him as good QB LMAO. Tommy Maddox won division title for Steelers back in the day does that make him good Qb. Seriously. And nothing wrong with other positions you want that’s your opinion mines is getting them is a waste if you’re still inept at QB. You may win games get to playoffs only to get beat by teams with a more talent QB. My opinion is get QB upgrade 1st then go after other positions. At least with a very good QB he can overcome shortcomings if you’re not able to address those other positions. See Colts. See Bears who don’t have good oline and avg to below avg receivers. See Steelers who have inconsistent o-line and run game isn’t nearly what is was in Big Ben early career.

  • November 27, 2011  - ED J says:

    LIke you said agree to disagree. I’m for addressing the positions you mention well except one pass rusher I think we have those guys they just need to develop (Houston, sheffield, and Bailey. Move Gilberry back to def end instead def tackle). The only thing I’m saying when building a good to great team that can consistently win every yr you must address QB 1st then check down the list. If QB is head of team then why not address head 1st. My thing is as long time Chiefs fan I’m sick of us having ok QB I want won who can go deep in playoffs and win Super Bowl. And in this day an age game manager QBs not going get it done. Its just too many teams with good to elite Qbs. Guys who can carry team when everything else around him is breaking down. When he doesn’t have run game he can carry team. Or he is without his #1 receiver he can carry team. Or when defense is havin bad day he can just outscore oppenent. Even if o-line isn’t protecting well he scramble around and still make plays throwing ball on the run.

    But hey you got your opinion I got mine so will leave it at that.

  • November 27, 2011  - cychief24 says:

    Last word ;)

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