Suck For Luck: Long-Term Big Picture View or Faulty Logic?

From the FanPosts. -Chris

While I'm fully aware that the Chiefs are pretty much out of the running for the 1st pick in the 2012 draft and with it the possibility of obtaining Andrew Luck as a Kansas City Chief, I also did not see in the hundreds of comments on this issue some of the viewpoints that I'll summarize below. If I missed seeing these points espoused by some, I apologize for the oversight now to those who made them.

For the record, I was most definitely NOT among those espousing the "Suck for Luck" mantra. I am a lifelong Kansas City Chiefs fan; a born and bred KC girl, raised with Chiefs football in the Lenny and Otis days.

Never lay down; never give up; never say die; never cheat; never betray yourself, your beliefs or your team (whether you play on the field or root from the sidelines) was instilled in me very early on by a father who played high school football in the early 1940s. He was a big man in his day, 6’3" and 225, and was favored to receive a scholarship to play football in college. Instead, he enlisted in the Navy and saw action in the Pacific in the final two years of WWII. He never played football outside of the neighborhood sandlot again (where he taught his sons, the neighborhood boys and his tomboy daughter-me how to play the game), and he also never missed a Chiefs game from the day Lamar Hunt brought them to town. He was one of the first to purchase Chiefs season tickets and my brothers and I vied for the privilege of going with him on game day if mom decided not to go. (Gawd, I still remember electric battery-powered socks to ward off the chill at December games!)

As a child of the 60s, and no stranger to personal tragedy in the circles of family and friends, I was also very aware that one must live today as if there is no tomorrow. Therefore, the tenet that one always gives their absolute best permeates all facets of my life, including the part of me that is a forever loyal, die-hard Chiefs fan. It is simply not within me to want my team to lose, not for any reason.

But, all of the above is only part of why I could never adopt any type of "Lose to Choose" attitude.

Beyond loyalty and perseverance is logic in assessing long-term benefits or detriments of a given choice or action. Through running my own businesses and working in the corporate world, I’ve encountered many excellent leads and managers who each taught me much. One of the lessons was to assess as many factors as possible in decision-making, especially in the effect it will have on those directly involved.

So now the crux of this post – my position is that those wanting the team to SFL were in fact engaging in faulty logic with far more long-term detriments than any possible benefit.

Main SFL Premise / Benefits:

• This is a long-term, big picture view to obtain a franchise QB to lead the team to multiple victories in the future

• SFL allows you to root for individual players and still enjoy the season (not sure who can honestly do this, but it was one argument)

Long-term Unknowns / Actual Detriments:

• Unknown – Luck may not even make it in the NFL, like Leaf, Russell, Carr, Shuler, Mirer, Ware, Blackledge and many more (yes, this point was addressed in comments but couldn't resist the pic opp). The face of first round bustitude…



• SFL completely eliminates any value in using the "right 53" theme, as it tells players that all of them are less valuable than a single, un-proven college player.

• SFL infuses the team with negativity and the attitude to tank when things aren’t going well. Thus, playing to lose also totally negates any character-building that takes place when one fights through adversity, especially in a team atmosphere. Playing to lose has no relationship to either pride or character. An appropriate quote from Hank Stram that supports this point as it says "grow," not "lose":

"People with pride and character grow in the face of adversity."



• SFL leads to the "every man for himself" mentality – after all, if 1 player is more important than team, why be a team player? Any subsequent system is doomed to fail if those who tanked for a later 1st pick are still on the roster – they will all be playing for themselves and their own stats or to position them for something better somewhere else. It encourages selfishness. After throwing a game or season once, one is likely to do it again and as it leads to an individual instead of team mentality, the reason for doing it again may be personal rather than team-oriented.

• SFL all but guarantees the HC will be fired, which in turn guarantees a new system will be implemented. Most of the time this sets a team back at least 2-3 more years, as players work to learn a new system and establish a working rapport with the new regime. This rarely works, and generally begins the HC revolving door.

• SFL creates a huge potential that previously under-achieving players who’ve blossomed for Haley (Bowe, Charles and Johnson among others) may defect for better offers and not respond well to a different coaching staff, i.e. more losses regardless of QB play. We’ve already seen how well they responded to a "Players Coach" when Herm was here (even though his most famous quote also underscores my entire premise).

• Finally, it’s doubtful that Luck would even be interested in playing for a team suspected of losing to get the top pick (and whose fans wanted their team to lose to get him), ala Eli. The SFL focus himself as quoted from a NY Times article that included comments from Joel:

"I am aware of it," said Luck, who becomes awkward and uncomfortable whenever the N.F.L. is brought up. "A couple of guys told me about it. I think it’s stupid. Simply put."

Overall, from day one it’s appeared to me that promoting the Lose to Choose attitude is short-sighted and lacking in character, not to mention the many negative aspects it carries. The only positive thing I can think of from all the attention SFL has garnered in the media is that it may have a motivating effect on the team. I truly hope the adversity they’ve already encountered this season and all the negativity floating in the media and among some fans galvanizes the Chiefs players into a truly good team who plays together with pride and character, as they seem to be doing now. THAT’s what I’m rooting for. What are you rooting for?

[First post...hope it's not too long.]

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arrowhead Pride's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Arrowhead Pride writers or editors.

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