"It won't happen in a day, or a year, but they're making progress and I think that's the best we can hope for."
Does that line sound familiar? It should. It sounds like Kansas City Chiefs head coach Todd Haley but it's actually his father, Dick Haley, the well-respected and successful personnel man for those great Pittsburgh Steelers teams in the 70s and 80s.
The elder Haley joined Shan Shariff of 610 Sports on Wednesday talking about Todd Haley and his progress as the Chiefs head coach. Here's a recap of what Shariff and Haley talked about:
On Todd the coach: Todd loves football. He loves doing what he's doing and I know a lot of the coaches and the guys that are with him -- Mo Carthon, Bill Muir -- a lot of them were with us when we were in New York so I knew he has some very good assistants and they're working hard at it so hopefully they'll be able to do it. It's never easy.
On giving advice to him: I don't yell at him. I know how hard it is. He has enough people yelling at him for what he's doing, I'm sure, that he sure doesn't need me. I think he's doing i the right way. I know Scott [Pioli] and most of the people there so I think they're doing it the right way. It's never easy and it just takes a little bit of time. You don't always get that time in this league today because the pressure is great on everybody.
On what he passed onto Todd: That's a tough question. From the very beginning, I think one of the things that we talked about for a lot of years was evaluating people and I think Todd had a real advantage coming through because he was in the Steelers camps from a very young age so he got to see...One of my things with everybody is a lot of people don't know what good is. They'll look at good, they'll be saying this is great and I'm watching the guy and I'm looking at an average person. I think it's vital you know what you're looking for.
On finding out what good is: I think there's a little bit of luck involved but I think the high, high percentage is skill and doing the right things. As I said, i was involved in this game for probably close to 50 years and that makes me old, for one, but as i said, I'll be around people that just don't know what good is. That's the number one thing -- you have to be able to look at a couple of guys and be able to pick out which one is really good and which one is just OK. As I said, for the years I've been around, I've listened to many, many who were involved for a long time and didn't really know that.
On figuring out which players are good: He came up with Parcells and Parcells was very, very much into the scouting part and the evaluation of players and he was very good at it so Todd had really good teachers coming all the way through. It's never easy. I guarantee for every exact pick we made -- say the '74 draft where we'll brag about four guys in the Hall of Fame, which is probably pretty hard to do -- we had a lot of misses, too. It's never easy. We're running through a school and you get to watch four or five tapes on them, and maybe get to see them practice, but you're still...when you're covering the country like a lot of people have to do, scouting-wise, you can be in the wrong place at the wrong time as far as trying to look at a guy. A guy gets injured, you don't see him at 100 percent and don't get a chance to go back there (to the school) so some people slip through.
On how Todd compares to other head coaches: I really wasn't around that many. Chuck Noll was in Pittsburgh almost the entire time I was there, and I was with Bill Parcells for quite a while. I think they all do it different, and there's more than one way to do it. I think the number one thing the head coach has to be able to distinguish who the good players are, too. We see people getting cut, and it shocks me and I'll say, 'This guy is a really good player.' And yet some people just let him go. Being able to evaluate your players is vital and of course you have to coach them.
On whether he offers advice: No, he's kind of doing it...He and Scott are doing it their way. If I see something I could help them with, I might bring it up but I'm not close enough. If you're watching it on TV you're not close enough. I am really excited about quite a few of the guys they got this year that look like they'll be able to make an impact in the future, and some have already done that. It's a good start. It's still early in the process and I think they've made some strides but they have to get back on track after the last couple of weeks.
On Todd not playing in the NFL: Didn't bother me at all. He was involved in football from the very beginning and got a chance to know the people in Pittsburgh and throughout and got an opportunity to work for Parcells which I don't think you can be exposed more than that. Where he was, 99 percent, or more than that, people in this country never have a chance to be involved like he was.
On yelling and motivating players: I think you're seeing a combination of that. I do think there are some people you have to get after to get them to play. Maybe not [Anquan] Boldin so much but Terrell Owens, I don't think anyone has had an easy time with him in his career. That was the way with a lot of really good players throughout the years. Some you've gotta get after and some they're going to do on their own. The good coaches know which way to go with people and that's what its all about.