Chiefs mailbag: How big can Travis Kelce be for Alex Smith and the passing game?

David Eulitt/Kansas City Star/MCT via Getty Images

MNChiefsfan's semi-regular mailbag touches on Travis Kelce's return to the KC Chiefs this offseason, the possibility of playing Dee Ford in the base defense, high expectations and the greatest TV shows of all time.

So about the name "Chiefs"...

I'm kidding. No way I'm touching that for right now. Of course, I've already doomed this thread to be dominated by that particular subject, so oh well. I'll have an opinion on it at some point, but I'm just too tired to care about such a ridiculous issue. Did you know for 30 bucks a month you can protect a child (and even a family) from starvation? THIRTY DOLLARS. Just throwing that out there for those who think their "cause" time / money is best spent on a freaking name of a freaking team.

(Crap, I got dragged in. Reeling it back, reeling it back...)

Anyway, about the mailbag. I've noticed that when I respond to more than 2-3 questions, some tend to fall by the wayside (especially if any of the questions involve a player whose name rhymes with "Balex Bsmith"). So we're shortening it up. Also, you know, lazy.

As always, throw me any football and non-football questions so we can survive the offseason together. and @RealMNchiefsfan are the places to reach me. Also, follow me on Twitter, yo. I'm getting within spitting distance of 1,000 followers and my life will be validated if I get there ... right? Anyway, mailbag!

The short answer is "I have no idea." The long answer is a little more complicated. Kelce has been hurt for awhile, and that really stinks. Word is that he looked fine in his limited participation in mandatory minicamp, so that's encouraging. He's definitely a wild card after getting hurt SO quickly last season. There's no NFL game tape to look at and say, "Oh yeah, he'll be a stud (or a dud)." It's tough to remain optimistic on a guy after a full year of nada.

On the other hand, Kelce is a 6'5, 260-pound tight end who ran a 4.61 40-yard dash and straight up MAULS people as a blocker. Seriously, I wrote what basically amounted to an excuse for a restraining order about his highlight film last offseason. The man can hit, plays with an edge, and has startling athleticism. He's also got something everyone's new favorite TE (Demetrius Harris, who intrigues me) doesn't have: experience at the position.

Final answer ... I don't think Kelce will be a "huge contributor. I think a healthy Anthony Fasano beats him out for the starting job. I do think that if he's healthy he'll add another threat, though. And if he STAYS healthy I think he's gradually pushing Fasano out of the picture as the year moves along. We'll see. I've been hurt before.

David Eulitt/Kansas City Star/MCT via Getty Images

Is "Seinfeld" really the greatest show of all time? If so, why?  If not, why not?


No, its not. Now, if you change that question to "Does 'Seinfeld' hold up better than any other comedy series" I might change my answer. Any time I catch an episode I find myself pleasantly amused. It doesn't require any knowledge of the characters (for the most part), and it doesn't feel as outdated in a "we're trying really hard to be stylish and hip" way as "Friends" does (not that I think "Friends" is the GOAT, it's just the natural competition).

There are three things about "Seinfeld" that keep it from reaching the lofty status of GOAT...

The first is that even though it's pretty broad humor and there are a lot of "heh," moments, I wouldn't call the show hysterical. It's consistently funny, yes. But it's not as though you're going to be rolling on the floor when you watch it. When you're strictly a comedy series and you're not trying to do anything else emotionally (the way other, more "dramedy"-type shows do), you'd better be freaking hysterical. And Seinfeld isn't.

My second issue is one of re-watchability. Seinfeld is very solid when it comes to viewing episodes a second or third time. However, it's not at the top end in that area. A lot of the jokes take a major dive with the second viewing, and by the third you're bored. Re-watchability is an absolute must for a great show. And you can't just be Alex Smith good in this area. You can't even be Tamba Hali good. You've gotta be Jamaal Charles good every time if you want to be the GOAT.

The final issue is that I'm a guy who likes his shows to have some depth. The whole "everyone is super shallow and doesn't really care about anything" schtick is ... I dunno, maybe it's too real for me? I need a show to at least occasionally make me FEEL, man. And yes, I read that out loud and it sounded really, really, really stupid. Oh well.

TV shows, like anything else, are a matter of opinion. But if someone were to put a gun to my head and demand I recommend ONE "funny" television show they'll enjoy the most from beginning to end, it's not gonna be Seinfeld. Really, every show has serious flaws, and this might be the most subjective thing on the planet (especially the humor aspect). But again, with my life on the line, I'm going with "Scrubs."

And if you don't know why I'm willing to place my life in the hands of Dr. Cox, then you clearly have never watched Scrubs and your life isn't as good as mine. For those who know, feel free to watch 10 minutes of rants. You're welcome (the "think of my patience as your virginity" rant is the greatest thing to ever happen. Not just on TV. Ever).

[Editor's note by Joel: Please know MNChiefsfan doesn't speak for all of AP on this issue. Seinfeld, the GOAT. )

Let me put it this way ... there are a few moments in my life that I knew were special. The day I met my wife. Our wedding. The birth of our kids. The first time my father shook my hand.

I don't want to exaggerate, but Dee Ford being able to play in both the Chiefs base defense and sub-packages would be up there somewhere in between "first handshake" and "birth of kids." It might even edge out a couple of the little rugrats (they're too young to read this and resent me forever, don't worry).

I've written a little about being creative with Ford here. I sincerely doubt he gets put in the base defense, but I'd be all for it if it was possible. Any time you can add another pass rusher on the field and make your defense a little more unpredictable, you do it. Every time.

David Eulitt/Kansas City Star/MCT via Getty Images

This feels like a good length for a mailbag, so I'll take a question from a Broncos fan (my friend Chad Jensen, a good guy otherwise) and call it a day.

I don't think the pressure will matter all that much, really. Andy Reid has fielded plenty of competitive teams. He's not going to worry about stuff. Honestly, I think the pressure was more on Reid LAST year. Coming off a crap year, having been fired, taking over a team that had played like garbage the year before. He was a 5-11 year from people saying, "See, I told you he's lost it. Dude's done."

Instead, Reid (along with Dorsey) presided over the biggest turnaround in the history of time, besides maybe the Rebel Alliance victory over the Empire and America in the Civil War. Yes, the season ended on a sour note (allowing 28-point comebacks doesn't exactly make for a good time for fans), but last season was a blast. It ended up way above expectations.

That should buy some goodwill (even though it won't) for at least one year. It's well known that the Chiefs 2014 schedule is brutal this season, and a lot of pundits have the Chiefs off as a team to take a big step backward (due to the "devastating" free agent losses). That puts the Chiefs in a unique position to remain the underdog even after making the playoffs last season. All in all, it's played out well for the Chiefs.

Also, I think what you've got with the Chiefs is a team full of guys who have tasted JUST enough success to not be nervous, but want way more. Do you think Eric Berry is nervous about expectations or fired up to go out and redeem himself after a rough playoff performance? You think Jamaal Charles has anything but bionic fluid in his veins, or that Dontari Poe minds feasting on offensive linemen with "higher expectations?" I don't. Especially when, as stated before, expectations don't really seem all that high.

Probably the best thing the Chiefs have going for them this year is that they finally, finally, finally are going two straight years in the same system offensively and defensively, with almost no turnover in the coaching staff whatsoever. We'll see how much of a difference it makes. I think it'll matter a whole lot more than increased fan expectations.

Or, you know, I'm completely wrong and it will destroy the team from the inside out.  I'm pretty sure it'll be one of the two.

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