For all his efficiency, Smith has always struggled to make big plays with his arm consistently, which will limit his contractual value in a long-term situation. He’s coming into the final year of the three-year, $24.5 million contract he signed with the 49ers in Mar., 2012, and he’ll command a $7.5 million base salary in 2014. If he’s able to put up the same kinds of numbers next season, that will be a bargain — and he’s proven that he can play at a level commensurate with a mid-level deal.
Biggest surprise: The Chiefs plucked rookie cornerback Marcus Cooper, a seventh-round draft pick of the San Francisco 49ers, off waivers to start the regular season. Cooper played better than the Chiefs had a right to expect for a long stretch of the season as the third cornerback. He had a rough stretch late in the season before bouncing back at the end. At 6-foot-2 and 192 pounds, Cooper has the size to match up with the league's bigger receivers. Cooper projects as nothing less than the Chiefs' third cornerback next season and could eventually become a starter.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers officially asked the Kansas City Chiefs for permission to interview personnel man Chris Ballard for the Bucs opening at general manager. However, a source indicated that the Chiefs may turn down the request because of questions over whether Ballard will have full authority as a general manager.
Carl Peterson, former General Manager, Team President, CEO, Kansas City Chiefs - Peterson is already a business partner with Dolphins owner Stephen Ross and one of his closest NFL advisors. He's been rumored to be in position to take over as the team's "football czar" for several years now, and, with Ireland out, he could move into the position and serve as the GM as well.
Scott Pioli, former General Manager, Kansas City Chiefs ... He has received glowing reviews from Bill Belichick on his time with the Patriots, but was not as successful as expected with the Chiefs, despite six Pro Bowl selections in 2012 on a 2-14 team. Pioli's main issues were at the quarterback position, where he acquired Patriots backup Matt Cassel and Brady Quinn, neither of whom panned out as NFL starters.
Because of an officiating error, a resident of a Pennsylvania correctional facility attempted to block the Chargers at Bengals Wild Card game, and requested a judge issue a ruling against the NFL, forcing either a field goal attempt made days after the game, the Chiefs be given a victory or the Chargers and Steelers to play for the sixth seed in the AFC Playoffs.
Sometimes, I really worry about local Chiefs fans. And I have grave doubts about their sanity. These compassionate feelings have been aroused by disappointed e-mails I received from readers who were delusional enough to have the expectation that the Chiefs were going to win their game last Saturday and were gravely disappointed that they didn’t. These poor souls got all excited when Kansas City had a 28-point lead in the Wild Card playoff game, and were actually surprised when their always-futile team-of-choice didn’t win. It amazes me that there were actually longtime football fans still delusional enough to think that a professional team from Kansas City actually had a chance to win this type of game.
Hopefully, the Kansas City faithful will remember this as the year their team shocked everyone, as the year the only undefeated team in the league was also the underdog. Hopefully, they remember beating the Eagles, an emotional win for their new coach. Or the day Jamaal Charles scored five touchdowns against the Raiders for a 56-31 win. Maybe they’ll remember a defense with two linebackers, Hali and Houston, that played some of the best football since the days of Derrick Thomas. Finishing with an 11-6 record should be a source of pride, but there will also be those who laugh, knowing that Kansas City has fallen short so many times.
You can see Chiefs safety Kendrick Lewis' position as Hilton starts running; it’s as if Lewis was waiting for another corner route. Lewis turned to play that, preventing him from guarding against the post route. He had turned to the sideline. He couldn’t turn and run with Hilton. That’s why Luck threw the ball. That’s what quarterbacks are coached to do, to look at a safety’s body position.
The move by the patent office is interesting, especially in light of a recent poll that showed 71 percent of Americans do not think the team should change its name. Reacting to the poll results, Joel Barkin, spokesman for the Onieda Indian Nation, said that "there is no poll or financial transaction that can solve a moral problem." The situation is sure to be watched closely by the Kansas City Chiefs, who were also named in a report by the National Congress of American Indians on team name and logos they described as profiting from "harmful stereotypes."