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The Patriot Way -vs- The Chiefs Way. The Wonder Years.

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Maybe this should be titled:

Kraft/Belichick/Pioli -vs- Hunt/Haley/Pioli. The Early Years.

Who knows, who cares? I figured the title would bother Craig in Calgary, so I went with it... Last week I compared the 2003 Chiefs to the future 2011 Chiefs team. It was a fair comparison, and an interesting subject. However, it was lacking in the similarities by which the two teams were operated. Dick Vermeil's team and Todd Haley's team to be, were a little too far apart in philosophical differences on both sides of the pigskin.

So after giving it some thought this week, and writing a couple stories about the lockout (which were greeted with the sound of crickets.) I figured, who better to compare our 2011 Chiefs team to, other than the very same team our fearless leader Scott Pioli cut his Super Bowl Winning teeth with... The New England Patriots!!!

More specifically, the 2001 Super Bowl Winning New England Patriots. After all, I believe that the Chiefs are about to start a Super Bowl Winning Dynasty of their own. So, why not compare them to the team that they will be linked to forever anyway.

Let's take a look at the rosters, and then we will get down to nitty gritty.

Nitty Gritty - Meaning:

The heart of the matter; the basic essentials; the harsh realities.

OFFENSE

2001 Patriots

2011 Chiefs

Brady

QB

VS

Cassel

QB

Edwards

FB

VS

McCluster

W/R

Smith

RB

VS

Charles

RB

Brown

WR

VS

Bowe

WR

Patten

WR

VS

Baldwin

WR

Light

LT

VS

Albert

LT

Compton

LG

VS

Waters

LG

Woody

C

VS

Hudson

C

Andruzzi

RG

VS

Lilja

RG

Randall

RT

VS

Richardson

RT

Rutledge

TE

VS

Moeaki

TE

DEFENSE

2001

2011

Hamilton

LDE

VS

Jackson

LDE

Mitchell

LDT

VS

Powe

NT

Pleasant

RDT

VS

Dorsey

RDE

Seymour

RDE

VS

Houston

LOLB

Cox

LLB

VS

Belcher

LILB

Bruschi

MLB

VS

Johnson

RILB

Johnson

MLB

VS

Hali

ROLB

Phifer

RLB

VS

Flowers

LCB

Law

LCB

VS

Carr

RCB

Smith

RCB

VS

Berry

SS

Milloy

SS

VS

Lewis

FS

Jones

FS

VS

Arenas

NCB

SPECIAL T.

Vinatieri

K

VS

Succop

K

Walter

P

VS

Colquitt

P

Brown

PR

VS

Arenas

PR

Faulk

KR

VS

McCluster

KR

ROLE

McGinest

RDE

Bailey

DE

Vrabel

LLB

Brown

CB

Stevens

DB

Studebaker

LB

Wiggins

TE

Gilberry

DE

Faulk

RB

Asomoah

OL

Bledsoe

QB

Wiegmann

OL

Shaw

DB

Jones

RB

Redmond

RB

Smith

DE

Follow me...

At first glance, doesn't it look like the 2011 Chiefs are remarkably better at almost every position. I mean for goodness sakes, Anthony Pleasant? Isn't he our Defensive Line Coach now, what good would he possibly do on a Super Bowl Winner... Ha!

Sidenote:

Anthony Pleasant finished his career with 58 sacks. Which obviously is a sign from the Football Cops Football Gods, that he was meant to coach the line in Kansas City to greatness.

Seriously though, this is when the Patriots were nobodies. They were coming off a 5-11 season, and castoff Browns Coach Bill Belichick was going into his second season after succeeding Pete Carroll.

We all know the story, Drew Bledsoe got hurt... Check it out (Big thanks to Zeekk7 at Youtube and ESPN for the video.)

Mo Lewis Buries Drew Bledsoe! (via zeekk7)

Immediately afterwards, the skies opened up, Tom Brady flew down on a cloud from heaven, and won the Patriots 3 Super Bowls in 4 seasons.

In 2001 though, how good was Tom Brady compared to Matt Cassel in 2010. Let's look at the numbers. (Pro-football-reference.com)

Year Age Tm Pos No. G GS QBrec Cmp Att Cmp% Yds TD TD% Int Int% Lng Y/A AY/A Y/C Y/G Rate Sk Yds NY/A ANY/A Sk% AV

Tom Brady

2001* 24 NWE QB 12 15 14 11-3-0 264 413 63.9 2843 18 4.4 12 2.9 91 6.9 6.4 10.8 189.5 86.5 41 216 5.8 5.4 9.0 12

Matt Cassel

2010* 28 KAN QB 7 15 15 10-5-0 262 450 58.2 3116 27 6.0 7 1.6 75 6.9 7.4 11.9 207.7 93.0 26 182 6.2 6.6 5.5 12

I know, I know, I can't compare those numbers, because Tom Brady went on to a Super Bowl victory and Matt Cassel went on to an abysmal playoff loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

That is exactly why I am comparing the 01' Patriots to the 11' Chiefs instead. So by that method, Matt Cassel looks well on his way to stacking up against his mentor in his breakout season.

Offense.

The 2001 Patriots were not a team that looked built for a Super Bowl run. Look at the rosters weapons... Troy Brown, David Patten, Antowain Smith, Rod Rutledge, Kevin Faulk. Sure, Antowain Smith and Troy Brown had great years during their super season.

Though for my money, I would take Jamaal Charles, Dwayne Bowe, Tony Moeaki, Dexter McCluster and Jonathan Baldwin for the win. Everyday of the week and even twice on Super Bowl Sunday.

That includes the Offensive Line. Remember in 2001, Matt Light was just a rookie.

That's right Arrowhead Pride, I would take the Chiefs 2011 Offense over the Super Bowl Winning 2001 New England Patriots, the team whom beat "The Greatest Show On Turf" to start a dynasty.

Defense.

The 2001 Patriots biggest strength was playing as a collective unit. Everything that Todd Haley preaches about wanting the Chiefs to be as far as complimentary football goes, is what the New England Patriots were exactly and then some. It is obviously why Scott Pioli is so sold on the method working. This team knew how to play together and win as one, if a piece broke, they plugged another piece in, kept churning and they haven't looked back since.

Talent wise, the Patriots defense was great. They had two top flight CB's in Otis Smith(in the twilight of his career) and Ty Law. One of the great safeties to ever play the game, Lawyer Milloy. It featured Ted Johnson and Tedy Bruschi, as a fierce MLB duo and a great Defensive Coordinator named Romeo Crennel (you may have heard of him.)

In a lot of ways Kansas City's defense is similarly packed. The Chiefs have an outstanding young safety in Eric Berry, a relentless pass rusher in Tamba Hali. Two high caliber CB's in the NFL, one of whom plays out of this world in Brandon Flowers.

Both teams have young guys ready to step in and play well. The Patriots had Richard Seymour, and Mike Vrabel. The Chiefs have Justin Houston, Cameron Sheffield, Micah Johnson, Allen Bailey and Jerrell Powe ready to step up and maybe make a difference soon.

I think Kansas City has the potential to be an even better defense than the 2001 Patriots. Talent wise they are very similar with the Chiefs having a little better depth. Plus, we have the same Defensive Coach, but ours has ten years experience on theirs.

Who do you give the edge to?

Special Teams.

The Patriots had the greatest clutch kicker of all-time and Todd Haley just goes for it on fourth down. So I will give the edge to the Patriots. Though, I do think Javier Arenas will be one of the premier returners in the league in 2011.

The Patriot Way.

How can you argue with The Patriot Way, 2001 is the year that it was really brought to fruition. The Patriots went on to win 3 out of 4 Super Bowls, and came just one defended circus catch away from a undefeated season in 2007.

The Patriot Way gave us our GM Scott Pioli, whom has brought us back to relevance. I will forever be grateful to Bill Belichick for developing our fearless leader on his pull out sofa in the 1990's.

Overall record in New England

Under Belichick, the Patriots have gone 126–50 in 11 regular seasons. The team also sports a 14-5 record in the playoffs, and 3–1 in Super Bowls. They have won eight division titles, including five consecutive titles from 2003 to 2007 (and only missed the playoffs on tiebreakers in 2002 and 2008). The Patriots have also defeated each regular season MVP they have faced in that year's playoffs (Kurt Warner in Super Bowl XXXVI, Peyton Manning and Steve McNair after the 2003 season, Manning in 2004, LaDainian Tomlinson in 2006).

From Here

Say what you will about The Patriot Way, but after reading that and watching the NFL the last decade. It is obvious that it is incredibly effective in the NFL.

That said...

The Chiefs Way.

This is a new age in Kansas City. It is an age of the Holy Trinity. Clark Hunt, Scott Pioli, and Todd Haley completely have all of my faith and I believe they will lead us to the promised land, in the form of a Chiefs Dynasty.

Scott Pioli obviously learned a lot in his time in New England winning all of those championships. Truly though, I think the Chiefs Way is different from the Patriot Way. It is new and improved, he has hacked the fat from the Patriot Way of winning and created something special with it here in Kansas City.

Todd Haley puts his own unique spin on "The Process" and we have heard Clark Hunt speak about modeling his team after the Pittsburgh Steelers.

So that leads me to believe that there is a lot more to The Chiefs Way, then Scott Pioli just swiping Bill Belichick's playbook ala, "The Waterboy" and going to a new team. This Kansas City Chiefs organization has its own ideas for success as well.

Images_medium

via t0.gstatic.com

Arrowhead Pride, what do you think separates the Chiefs Way from the Patriots Way?