Sam Mellinger wrote a column last night about the disconnect between Chiefs leadership and the fans. He writes that "In the 24 hours or so after the Chiefs embarrassed themselves in Buffalo, and colleague Kent Babb and I each wrote scathing takedowns in return, I heard exactly one fan stand up for the team. Kent says he heard from two. That’s out of hundreds of emails and Tweets we received from people who love the Chiefs and no longer feel the love back."
Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/2012/09/17/3820542/disastrous-start-exposes-disconnect.html#storylink=rss#storylink=cpy
I agree with what Sam writes but I think what more fans are feeling is a sense of resignation. Chiefs fans have been through so many periods of "almost there" which turn into "rebuilding" that now any hope of ever having a complete team - on the field and off - seems hopeless.
This isn’t just a problem that has developed with Clark Hunt and Scott Pioli, this has been around for DECADES. I’d venture to say that the identity of this team since Hank Stram left has been formed around the feeling that the Chiefs could or should be something more that they were. Marty’s teams inspired hope that the Chiefs could win it all, but they didn’t. Every year it seemed the team would dominate the regular season and fall flat in the playoffs. After he left in 1998 fans saw the bottom drop out. Neil Smith was traded and Derrick Thomas died unexpectedly.
When Dick Vermeil came and reinvigorated the offense hope built again, but it was tempered by an old defense that toward the end made fans cringe whenever the Chiefs scored a touchdown. Since then fans have had little to cheer about, and when they do, there has always been an anxiety about what could go wrong next. Players have gotten traded and gone on to do great things (Rich Gannon, Jared Allen) fan favorites let go for next to nothing (Brian Waters, Tony Gonzalez, Dante Hall, Priest Holmes) quarterback battles that seemed to find out who was the worst (Damon Huard/Brodie Croyle/Tyler Thigpen anyone?).
Every year it seems fans hope for the best only to be crushed by owners and managers that seem intent on going in the opposite direction of success. Fans still show up and create the best gameday atmosphere in the NFL, but it has gotten harder each year they don’t see that same effort and enthusiasm from management or players. Chiefs fans have been fighting the contagiousness of hopelessness for nearly forty years now, and though the symptoms have exposed themselves occasionally in the past (the Eighties come to mind, as does Herm Edwards tenure) it feels like fans are on a precipice. it’s time that the team prove that they deserve the fans they have by winning, and by creating an atmosphere on the field and in the locker room and front office that equals the fervor and energy in the parking lot.