What are we, as a team?
That answer has changed approximately times since 1989. Let's review.
The Schottenheimer Era. Marty built this team from the ground up. The Chiefs of the late 70's and 80's were very sad. We didn't have a lot of quality players and Marty had to develop basically everyone, and he did a damn good job at it. He assembled a powerful and physical offensive line that fit his style of offense perfectly, molded one of the greatest physical specimans ever into an actual football player (Christian Okoye), assembled a respectable defense and also gathered a rag-tag crew of leftover QB's that were actually kind of able to succeed in our system. He maintained a playoff team through all the years, but just had some sort of mental block in the playoffs. So...
The Cunningham Era. Playoffs on our mind, we entered the 1999 season with high hopes for our new head coach. Coming in as a defensive coordinator, Kansas City became a largely defensive team but still maintained the physical style of offense reminiscent of Marty. Despite a fairly good defense and fair offense, Gunther failed to make the playoffs in his two seasons. Onto...
The Vermeil Era. When it all came down to it, Vermeil piloted probably our best teams not including the 69 Chiefs. He brought in and developed a bunch of late-round/undrafted misfits into probably the best assembly of blockers in league history to pave the way for other castoffs Priest Holmes and Trent Green to light up defenses. One of the best offensive lines in football history up front, future Hall of Famer Tony Richardson lead blocking, and giant Jason Dunn and ever-evolving blocker Tony Gonzalez manning the tight end positions. While Priest was a good player, I think anyone could've gained 1,000 yards behind that line. Along with Green's superb passing and a fairly respectable core of receivers, the Chiefs offense of that era was arguably one of the greatest ever. If it wasn't for KC having a defense ranked anywhere from 25th to 32nd in those years, I'm sure that team would've won a Super Bowl sometime. But Dick retired, leading to...
The Edwards Era. This was an ugly couple of years. Sure, we made the playoffs in 2006, but that was entirely because of Larry Johnson and the running game. When LJ got pissed for forcing him to take 450 carries in a season, which is seriously endangering his health, he got all mad and refused to do well anymore, and it didn't help that almost every good lineman we had ditched us. So we were faced with a defense that couldn't stop molasses, an offense that couldn't get on the board, and some draft picks that have more or less failed to live up to expectations. This Era couldn't last, so...
The Haley Era. What to think of Todd Haley... Well, what I can say is that when he's got the talent available to him he can make the most out of them (on offense, anyway). But his temper got the best of him and a lot of what seemed like personal grudges really hurt us. He had a shitty first season, made the playoffs in 2010 and got fired in 2011. After he dropped Jared Gaither for one stupid false start (Gaither then went on to play at a Pro Bowl level in San Diego when he actually got a chance to play), I got really pissed but didn't give up on Haley. What really sealed the deal for me was his refusal to play anyone but Palko. Sure, Tyler was a veteran QB that knew the plays. But he failed to realize, PALKO IS ABSOLUTE SHIT. He is possibly the worst QB I have ever seen start a game. I didn't care if Stanzi sucked in practice, didn't know the playbook, or wasn't ready. He shoud've been in during the Pittsburgh game after Palko turned over the ball 4 CONSECUTIVE TIMES. After the Palko era, I was ready to let go of Haley. Which brings us to...
The Crennel Era. It's now or never. We have the pieces (for the most, we may need a draft or two) to finally become a truly elite team on both sides of the ball. The defense, built by Romeo, is arguably elite. But for this team to finally win a damn playoff game FOR ONCE IN 16 YEARS, the offense will have to do something with the pieces they have. That's where Daboll comes in.
Observations of former offenses led by Brian Daboll.
This category is... depressing to say the least. 2010 he was with Cleveland, who racked up a grand total 4,635 yards, which was 29th in the league. Not impressive to say the least. Granted he didn't exactly have an arsenal of great offensive weapons, but that's still pretty sad.
The 2011 Dolphins offense was better. They ranked up 5,078 yards, which was 22nd in the league. Not great, but not necessarily pathetic. He had this reasonably good offense because he maintained balance in the offense by having a very effective running game, ranked 11th in the league.
What will he really do to us?
This is the biggest question mark for me. We have, when healthy, a very effective offense. A good yet very streaky offensive line that needs a little help, a very nice receiving core, and some amazing RB's (another in free agency or draft for depth couldn't hurt, however). Sure, we have fairly mediocre to good QB's in Cassel or Orton, but it's not like he's not used to that. He did work with Colt McCoy and Matt Moore, you know. So he's finally got a good group of talent, and it's up to him to do something with it. He's used to working with big receivers like Bowe and Baldwin and will hopefully help bring Jon up to his ceiling. He's also got a soft spot for fullbacks and utilizes them a lot in his offense, so I really hope he sees Le'Ron's potential and does something with it. I saw McClain being utilized a lot more during the end of the season, and I really liked what I saw.
What will he do to our blocking scheme?
This is another big question. He used a man-blocking scheme, I-Form in Cleveland that powered Peyton Hillis to 1,122 yards rushing. He used an even bigger line in Miami that was the second heaviest in the league behind only Cincinnati's, and that actually worked for little, fast and elusive Reggie Bush (that basically does away with the myth that small RB's can only do good behind small, fast lines). It'll be quite the shell shock for him to go from the giants up front in Miami to the shrimps we call O-linemen here. Hopefully he adds some much needed physicality and beef up front, as I blame our weakness at the line for our pathetic red zone percentage.
Finally, on a little more off-topic note, what are some free agents he's associated with?
Not even necessarily offensive free agents, either. He was a defensive coach with the Pats, so he can appreciate a good defensive player when he watches one play every single day against HIS offense. He has played with and could potentially put in an opinion for...
And most notably and the free agent I find the most interesting given our circumstances, Peyton Hillis. Daboll was the guy who really helped him out, gave him a shot. He built an offense that knew how to work with Hillis, and surprise! When Daboll leaves Hillis sucks ass. If Peyton comes to Hillis comes to KC, he might be able to revive 2010 Peyton Hillis and how bad ass would it be to have 2010 Peyton Hillis and Jamaal Charles sharing the same backfield?