Larry Johnson had an amazing last nine games of the 2005 season. LJ put up 1750 yards rushing and 20 TDs in only 9 starts. As the offensive line slowly melted away through this preseason, I still expected a lot out of the Chiefs running game. I thought Kyle Turley would be a fair substitute for Will Shields (or was it Willie Roaf? Seems so long ago). As Turley finally starts practicing after missing two games with a back injury, the same back that caused him to retire, I wonder if he will even be able to play much the rest of the season.
Larry Johnson's numbers are atrocious for a back of his quality. 357 yards rushing through 5 games. He also has 3 rushing TDs and 1 receiving TD. These numbers are pathetic. Larry Johnson, with few exceptions, has had little to no room to run when he grabs the handoff. Far and away his biggest play this year was the 78 yard reception against the Cardinals.
My point is this. The offensive line is weak so far this year and the Chiefs are reeling from the loss of Tony Richardson. Ronnie Cruz is not really bad at all. But he's injured and out for the rest of the season. We'll now be substituting Kris Wilson, who is sort of a half tight end half fullback type of player. At least thats what they're describing him as. I don't expect a lot out of Wilson. I really can't imagine him having a huge year if that makes any sense from a fullback's perspective.
As porous as the offensive line has been, the running game's outlook is even worse. With a lackluster o-line and a quasi fullback, how can we expect much more? I hope to hell that the running game picks up. I think it will too. Despite the Chargers having an excellent defense, its getting close to crunch time for determining the spirit of the 2006 season. Will we be battling for a Wild Card Spot in Week 17 or will we be scrambling to get to .500 to earn back our dignity?
These next few games are tough and are very important for determing the course of this season. Keep up the good work to those who have been helping out in the diary section. For those of you who haven't contributed yet, create an account and just write whatever's on your mind.