Happy Thursday! Here is your daily dose of Kansas City Chiefs News. Long day at work today. Tomorrow is our holiday party (half non-work day) then vacation for me. Sunday will be my last post until Tuesday the 29th. I'm lucky enough to be spending the holiday on a cruise, and I'm not sure what my internet access will be. I'm looking forward to it. The last time I was on a cruise in the Caribbean, the boat was haze gray and launching aircraft. This should be better.
The Chiefs offense continues to struggle. It was abundantly apparent last Sunday when they played a mediocre Buffalo defense.
While they were able to produce 354 yards – their second best yardage day of the 2009 season – they were able to score but 10 points and one touchdown. They turned the ball over four times. They allowed four sacks.
In all, they had 20 negative plays, a number they should reach over three or four games, not just one. They are 80 percent through their season and they are still making a remarkable number of mistakes. That total of 20 included four sacks, four interceptions, four offensive penalties, three passes for minus-yardage and five running plays for minus-yards.
Essentially the Chiefs big offensive day came down to a 76-yard touchdown run by Jamaal Charles
Working The Offense … Thursday Cup O’Chiefs from Bob Gretz
"I count drops and always have, and have been a pretty critical judge in that area," said Chiefs coach Todd Haley, a former wide-receivers coach. "I do feel like if a receiver gets his hands on it, he should come up with it. That’s what they get paid for. We’ve had way too many.
"There is no trick to it. You’ve got to (work on catching the ball) before practice and after practice. You can’t catch enough balls and practice your craft, whoever it is, tight ends, receivers or backs, because everybody has a hand in it. We need to do a better job. Those are things this young team can’t overcome. We’ve shown that. We can’t overcome dropped balls. The games that we’ve done a good job of catching the ball, we’ve been pretty competitive. When we haven’t, it’s been an additional thing that’s been too hard for us to overcome."
Chiefs in bad hands with their receivers from KC Star
Chiefs wide receiver Dwayne Bowe returned to practice Wednesday and worked with the first-team offense, picking up where he left off before a four-week suspension for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances.
Bowe wouldn’t answer reporters’ questions after the workout, instead saying that he’d have something to say after Kansas City’s home finale Sunday against Cleveland.
Coach Todd Haley said that Bowe, who reported to the team’s offseason conditioning program last spring about 30 pounds over his target weight, maintained his fitness during his four weeks away from Chiefs headquarters. Haley said he spoke with Bowe before the suspension but the team couldn’t be in contact with him during his punishment.
Chiefs notebook: Bowe works with first-team offense in return to practice from KC Star
Not that anyone needs extra time to prepare for the Chiefs -- they are 3-10, including losses to both Denver and Buffalo. But the extra days provide fresher legs and give bodies additional time to heal up from injuries. Those become late-season edges.
But the Chiefs are a small-market team and the NFL pays little regard to the wants and needs of small-market teams when drawing up its schedule.
Unfair scheduling: Chiefs' rested opponents from The Dallas Morning News
It was November 15, and Kansas City had not only beaten the Oakland Raiders 16-10, it might have been their most complete game of the season. The Chiefs threw for over 200 yards, ran for over 100 and Bowe was in the middle of it all, catching six passes for 91 yards, his second-best total in 2009.
Even without Bowe, the upswing continued a week later against the Pittsburgh Steelers in a thrilling 27-24 win. It might have been Matt Cassel’s best game this season, as he threw for 248 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions. At the time, it appeared as if the Chiefs perhaps didn’t need Bowe as much as some had previously thought.
Three weeks later, that hypothesis has been smashed to bits.
Can Bowe Save The Chiefs? from WPI
In the old days, the Romans used career soldiers called centurions to indoctrinate the men in the ranks. Among the new centurions in the NFL is Mike Vrabel, of Walsh Jesuit, Ohio State and the Browns' opponent this Sunday, the Kansas City Chiefs.
Before New England's coaching staff made Vrabel a central element of three Super Bowl champions, he was a spare part in Pittsburgh. After New England, he and Matt Cassel, who baby-sat the quarterback position when Tom Brady was hurt last season, were traded to Kansas City for a second-round draft pick.
Cassel is the player of the future; Vrabel is the veteran exemplar.
Wins (for now) aren't the measure of Mike Vrabel's leadership with Chiefs: Bill Livingston from The Cleveland Plain Dealer
Todd Haley compared Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel's situation in Kansas City to that of Brady Quinn's here.
"Matt is a young quarterback experience-wise," said Haley. "Even though he was a backup there in New England for a few years, he's not had a lot of game experience -- even the well-documented college experience where he was a backup at USC. He's no different than a lot of these young guys, Brady Quinn included. They need game experience and the bullets have to be flying.
Chiefs equate Cassel's growth with Quinn's: Browns Insider, with Tony/Mary Kay video from The Cleveland Plain Dealer
Quarterback Brady Quinn:
(On the Kansas City defense)- "Besides their record, they have a lot of talented guys up front. They have (Tamba) Hali coming off the edge. I played against guys like Glenn Dorsey in college. I know that they are tremendous players. I played against Corey Mays, obviously, I was on the same team as him. You know they are talented across the board and across the secondary as well. They do a great job of getting turnovers in the red zone as well as applying pressure. They have some crafty veterans too, guys like Mike Vrabel, who are able to make plays and do some good things in there."
Cleveland Browns: Wednesday open locker room quotes; David Bowens, Josh Cribbs, Brady Quinn from The Cleveland Plain Dealer
Chiefs personnel czar Scott Pioli and Mangini got to know each other as young grunts on Bill Belichick’s 1990s Browns staff, then found themselves moving to Baltimore in 1996.
"Scott actually is responsible for me meeting Julie," Mangini said Wednesday. "On the relocation weekend to Baltimore ... Scott was friends with Mark (Shapiro). He was going out and he said, ‘Hey, do you want to come out? We’re going to meet my buddy’s sister and her girlfriends and, look, you can talk to any of the girls ... just don’t talk to my buddy’s sister.’ "
The buddy was Mark Shapiro, now the general manager of the Cleveland Indians.
"Of course, I sat next to her," Mangini said. "We ended up talking, and now we’re married. He’s responsible for that, and I thank him for that."
Browns Notebook: Chiefs' Pioli Introduced Mangini to Future Wife from CantonRep.com
Cleveland at Kansas City - Wow … I … can't … wait … for … this … game. … It … doesn't … get … any … more … exciting … than … this. Guru: Chiefs 12-7; Vegas: Chiefs by 1.5.
Jr. attempts to pull a Sergio in Sr.'s stead from The Durango Herald