Look out boys and girls, the Unbeliever has reason to waver. That's right, Aiken_Drum has discovered the presence of green shoots in the dirt at Arrowhead. I know it's only March and there is still snow around, but the evidence is unmistakeable. The beginnings of possibility have taken root.
Now don't get me too far ahead of myself. I'm not ready to jump on the playoff train, or potentially even the winning season train at the moment. I'm sure you've read about my feelings on the QB situation and any optimism in the Unbeliever's court is certainly curbed by that presence. No, my sudden (it will appear to some anyway) change to a slightly more positive view has to do with our new Head Coach and General Manager.
More specifically, it has to do with their recent exploits with keeping our own players in the fold and what this projects, at least to this fan.
I know that we haven't really gotten started yet with all the changes that will occur to this team during this off season, but signing Bowe and Colquitt and even tagging Albert have gone a long way with me in terms of showing Dorsey and Reid's conviction. These guys are not just fooling around and trying to get started, they hit the ground running and are throwing bombs on the move.
At least, it seems that way to Chiefs fans because we have been subject to so much rumbling, stumbling, bumbling, and fumbling from the FO and coaching staff over the last seven years or so that you could put a picture of the Arrowhead next to the definition of chaos in the dictionary. Going all the way back to Herm, this team has been struggling to find an identity with very little success. 2010 was as close as we got and Pioli just couldn't live with improvement that wasn't completely credited to him, so he pulled the pin and blew what little success we'd had to smithereens in hopes that HE would garner the accolades of the future.
It didn't happen. He got shit canned for holding my team hostage and it felt like justice the day his dismissal was announced. It's history now, but the next several years of struggle are due to the discombobulation that he created while his hands were on the controls. For that, he gets no quarter from me. I was duped into believing that Pioli was indeed half of what happened in New England. Unfortunately for the Chiefs, the reality is that Hoodie, for all his foibles and faults, really is the shit, the whole shit and nothing but the shit. Pioli needs to start over at the Pop Warner level. Or just go into oblivion, either is fine with me as long as he stays away from KC.
No, my friends, it looks like what we have now is (finally) a GM/HC combination that shares not only the desire to win, but also the conviction to do what's needed to achieve that desire while letting accolades be bestowed by history as they should. For now at least, it appears to be all about WINNING. This is such a novel concept in KC as to be recognized as a rarity.
We've seen no evidence of hidden agendas, Chiefs administrative personel being required to draw their blinds during the work day so as to protect the game plan (that move certainly built a lot of trust), or management meetings wherein the collective has been chastised about such important aspects of running a football team as picking up trash in a freaking stair well.
Instead we see the current regime publically working hard, resigning our own hard working and Chief's developed players that would be very hard to replace, and a sense that money is taking a backseat in decision making to make the team a contender. Considering the amount of money that Clark Hunt et al have now had to spend to get us from the end of last season to today, I think it's pretty difficult (if not impossible) for those fans inclined to call our team the "Cheaps" to do so with any real conviction. Success or failure remains to be seen, but if it fails, it won't be for lack of spending on the problem.
The one area that this regime resembles the previous one, at least to some degree, is in this choice of Quarterback. I'm sorry, but I'm not sold on Alex Smith. The biggest issue I have with the move is that I tend to agree with those who think that the salary and the trade indicate that this is not only a stop gap move. The reports that Andy Reid was enamoured with Smith last season and tried to bring him to the Eagles would seem to lend credence to this belief. If these things are accurate, here we have another HC/GM that are bringing in a suspect QB, in the hopes that he is the answer.
I've heard all the arguments. I understand that many believe Reid to be a guru with QBs. IMO, if you look at reality, Reid has had success with one QB, polished a couple of turds in order to trade them, and failed miserably with another who was touted as an above agerage QB in the league long before Reid ever got ahold of him. Was it Reid who made McNabb a success or was it Reid who benefitted because McNabb was above average and Andy had a defensive coordinator who was a cut above that?
If Reid was so adept at fitting QBs into his 'system', then how do you explain the failure of Mike Vick? If Reid developed QBs into something better than they started out as (for instance in the case of McNabb), how do you explain the failure of Kolb after leaving Reid, the waste of bringing in Vince Young and the fact that Doug Pederson couldn't get it done all those years ago? I'm not saying I know any of this for certain, it's just that these questions are floating around out there and they really haven't been answered.
Green shoots. It's nice to see'em again. Could Andy Reid be the answer? Sure he could. Could he also be a HC that's a bit above average who rode the wave created by a better than average QB and a defensive coordinator that kept him in games until he finally got out coached on the sidelines? That also seems a possibility. How ever this eventually plays out, the one thing that seems clear to me is that Reid and Dorsey have confidence in their ability to do this job and bring a winner. That, I like.
I'm not ready to jump up and down about it yet, but they are moving forward with purpose. There is much to prove. I hope they succeed. If they do, we won't have to worry about looking for green shoots. We'll be too busy devouring the fruits of the ones I noticed just now...