Full transcript is after the jump...
Q: What did you like about Bobby Engram?
TODD HALEY: “Bobby is a player I had earlier when I was the receivers coach with Chicago for a short time. He is a guy who knows how to be a pro, knows how to prepare, been part of a winning team in Seattle over the last handful of years. I think he’s a smart player and knows how to play specifically the slot position.”
Q: He isn’t a guy who puts up monstrous numbers, but he is one of those guys who can make plays when you need it – third down plays.
HALEY: “I’ve always said that the third down receiver is easy to talk about but it takes a special makeup because that particular player who is a third down receiver, the first ball that he sees coming his way may be in the third quarter, it may be in the second quarter; it might not be until the fourth quarter. But it’s always going to be a critical throw and a critical ball to catch so you don’t get quite as many opportunities. So, I don’t think that job is for everyone. Again, you need a certain type of mental makeup, a certain amount of mental toughness to go a quarter or a quarter and half and then, all of a sudden, here comes a contested catch in traffic that you must make to get the first down. I think Bobby has made a career out of playing that position.”
Q: Was it hard to convince him to come to Kansas City?
HALEY: “Bobby and I had a bond, I think, early on even though we weren’t together for very long, especially these last few years when he was with Seattle. We always got together before and after the game and talked a couple of minutes.
“Like I said, there’s been a bond and Bobby from the get-go was really excited about the opportunity. So, I wouldn’t say it was hard. I think he’s a guy that thinks he’s got a few years left and he actually thinks he’s got a bunch of years left and I hope he does.”
Q: He says he wants to win a Super Bowl. What did you tell him about that?
HALEY: “Again, I think Bobby is a pro and he knows the window is getting smaller and I think as guys get older in this league they start to gain an appreciation for it’s not about the money, or about the cars; it’s about winning it all. He knows his window is getting smaller and he wants an opportunity to do that. He felt like this was a place that was going in the right direction and would give him a chance. I’m excited he feels that way.”
Q: That’s got to make you guys feel pretty good to know that you were a 2-14 team a year ago and a team that some people thought was on the way down. For somebody to say I don’t have many years left and it’s not about the money anymore and I want to be a Chief, that’s got to make you feel good.
HALEY: “I don’t know if I’ve ever thought about it like that. We haven’t done anything yet but I think guys who want to get to that spot and want to be here is a great thing. I just came from a place in Arizona that hadn’t won a lot of games over the years – playoff games to be specific. We were able to get something special out there.
“The big thing that Scott (Pioli) and I are looking for, and we’re going to say this over and over again, we’re looking for guys that want to be here, not talk about it, but want to be a Kansas City Chief. That goes for guys on the roster and free agents. We’re looking for guys who want to be here.”
Q: You also had Monty Beisel in Arizona who signed today as well.
HALEY: “Yeah, Monty’s another guy I had a relationship with – a guy from this area. He’s another guy who expressed interest pretty quick. He’d like to be a part of what we’re doing.”
Q: Larry Johnson has said he doesn’t want to be here and you said you hadn’t had a chance to talk to him yet. Have you had a chance to talk to him on whether he wants to be here or not?
HALEY: “I don’t have anything on Larry. The off-season is getting ready to kick off her pretty quick and we’ll be finding out about a lot of these guys very quickly.”
Q: Do you have a game plan on what you want to accomplish this off-season?
HALEY: “The off-season is very critical to me, as it is to most coaches in the league. It was very critical in Arizona and it was very critical to our success there - the fact that we had great attendance in the off-season program. In the off-season is when you build some of that team chemistry, but bigger than that, the off-season is when you get your team strong and when you get your team in shape. It’s a long season but the off-season program is extremely critical and important to having success.”
Q: Was Clancy Pendergast all along going to be your choice for defensive coordinator?
HALEY: “I honestly didn’t know. I said early on that I was trying to accumulate as many good coaches as I could on the staff. I had Gary Gibbs, who is a former defensive coordinator, and Clancy as a former defensive coordinator. That left me a lot of options and that’s the way I went on both offense and defense.
“I’m extremely happy having Clancy on board as the coordinator and until titles were named he was the one running the show as it was. I think there is a good relationship on our offensive and defensive staffs.”
Q: Is there a misconception about him in that he wasn’t brought back on the Arizona staff after last season?
HALEY: “I don’t have anything to say about what happened there. What I will say is I believe Clancy was an integral part. It was his defense in our run to the Super Bowl. I believe that deep down inside and I think Clancy is an excellent coach and is excited about coaching and teaching. I’m just happy that the cards fell the way they did. He’s a guy I never expected to have an opportunity to hire on our staff. When he became available I tried to get him on board as quickly as I could.”
Q: Have you made any decisions on whether to go to a ¾ alignment on defense yet?
HALEY: “Not specifically. We’ve got a couple of mini-camps coming up here pretty quick and I want to get through those before I get into the defensive or offensive schemes.”
Q: Are there any veterans who said they don’t plan to report to any of the drills?
HALEY: “I’ve had very positive feed-back from all the guys I’ve talked to. Everybody is very excited and chomping at the bit to get going.”
Q: Do you expect Larry Johnson to be here?
HALEY: “Again, I’ve had no negative feedback whatsoever.”
Bobby Engram also spoke with the Chiefs today. Check out the transcript and audio here.