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KC Chiefs mailbag: Mike Maslowski, the 2003 Super Bowl and more

Welcome to MNChiefsfan's Kansas City Chiefs offseason mailbag.

Dave Kaup Getty Images Sport

We're back and better than ever. Our last mailbag brought a ton of incoming mail. I love it. Send me MOAR at OR...tweet them to me @RealMNchiefsfan with #mnmail. That's right, I've finally caved an join Twitter.

Two things...

1. I can't believe I had to add the "Real" in there because someone has created a fake MNchiefsfan Twitter account. Absolutely mind-blowing.

2. I have no idea how to sift through tweets, or save them, or anything them. So the hashtag is to help me keep questions available. Yes, I'm 90 and don't understand technology. Leave me alone and get off my lawn.

All right, enough housekeeping. Let's get to the mailbag. Thanks for the huge response, and here's hoping for many, many more. If I don't use your first one, send me another and yell at me! Here we go...

Favorite overachiever to ever wear a KC jersey. I’m going with Mike Maslowski here.


Tough to top Mas on that one. Remember on Madden that one year when he was really good? Because I do. he was the quarterback of my league-best defense and a tackling machine. Loved that guy. A slow white dude who looked like a guy who could be bouncing at the local dive bar and would ABSOLUTELY crack you over the head with a bottle if he had to.

Remember the ESPN series "Playmakers?" Tell me they didn't base their crazy MLB character off Mas. They absolutely did. That alone gives him the edge over any other player I could possibly name. Also, did you know that he still (if Wikipedia can be believed) holds the Chiefs record for tackles in a single season? How crazy is that?

One more thing... is Mike Maslowski getting hurt what cost us a Super Bowl in 2003? DON'T LAUGH!!!!! Take a look. He gets hurt against the Bengals (our first loss of the season). After that, the bottom falls out of our defense, we lose two more games down the stretch, and then lose in the infamous no-punt game against the Colts.

Need proof? Prior to Mas going down against Bengals, our D had only given up 21+ points twice. When he went down and after? Five times. I'm telling you, Mas was the missing link. You think with that guy running around the Colts don't have to punt at least one time? Google Mas and stare into his eyes. Are those the eyes of a man who would've let us get embarrassed like that? Of course not! He would've ripped Pey-Pey's arms off and beaten him unconscious before letting that happen. You heard it here first... Mike Maslowski being hurt cost us the Super Bowl.

Anyway, what were we talking about? Right, favorite overachievers! Hmmm... you know, Mas is a GREAT answer. I think I'm going to steal it. Although I do have a fondness for Jared Allen, in large part because after leaving the Chiefs he came to MN (where of course I get to watch him a ton). But yeah, Mas (or the Missing Link, as I will now call him, since it was his absence that cost us a Super Bowl) is the right choice.

Brian BahrGetty Images Sport

Tim Riggins...good guy bad guy? Better or Worse than Don Draper?


First and foremost, any question that involves "Friday Night Lights" (the television series, not the movie) is very, very likely to elicit a response from me. Because it is the greatest show in television history. And yes, that includes the wildly overrated "Breaking Bad" and the only-ok "Mad Men." Anyone who disagrees with this clearly needs to get an earful from Coach Taylor, or perhaps even have Mrs. Taylor tell them to "calm down, y'all." I will argue this point to the death, and I will bow down to anyone who can send me an email that convinces me those shows aren't overrated.

Anyway, back to truly great TV and Friday Night Lights. Tim Riggins is most definitely a good guy. He's kind of an idiot, to be sure. But he's absolutely a good guy. Remember, when we meet him he's about 15 years old. So immaturity and poor decision making ability is almost a requisite. But he's the kind of guy you absolutely can trust with your daughter... Well, ok, that one might not be entirely true. But he's definitely a good guy. All guts and heart. He's like Rudy if Rudy were talented, good-looking, and ripped. All right, he's nothing like Rudy. But you get the idea.

And he's WAY better than Don "nothing about me is real" Draper. Don is the ultimate con man. Actually, let me rephrase that, Dick Whitman is the ultimate con man. Don is nothing more than a figment of Dick's imagination that people are too stupid to see through. Tim Riggins may not be perfect, but at least he's real. Don Draper is the attempt of an overgrown child to be "ubermensch." Mark my words, Tim Riggins will get married to Lyla Garrity or Tyra Collette, have kids, be a generally decent dad, and be a moderate success. Dick Whitman will die alone, with no one giving two craps that he's dead.

Come at me, Mad Men fanboys!

Without looking, can you nickname the player who was nicknamed "Super Gnat" and tell us something about him? Also, who do you consider the best football player of all time?

Omar Easy Fo Sheezy

I am ashamed to say the nickname has me stumped. I sat here and thought for a few minutes, and I'm out. Tell me what you know, Google...

Wow, you went back in the day for that one. Noland Smith. Well, since anyone can guess that he was a tiny dude, I'll tell you one thing about him that ISN'T football related... did you know Noland Smith made am appearance on the MASH movie as "Superbug?" Because I sure as heck didn't. If we have any semi-old-timers around that could tell us a good Super Gnat story, that'd be just peachy.

Actually, I'm not gonna leave out his size. The dude was 5'5" and weighed 154 pounds! From now on we need to refer to Dexter McCluster as "that guy who's bigger than Noland Smith."

Best football player of all time is a tough one... I'm going to reserve the right to change this opinion at any time. I'll throw out quarterbacks because it's not fair to everyone else. Man... this could go so many different ways. But if I were to start a team from scratch and I absolutely could not take a quarterback, I'd go with... Reggie White.

I don't think I have to defend this pick, but I will anyway. Listen, if you're going to build a team in today's NFL and aren't starting with a quarterback, you'd better grab someone who can make that quarterback miserable. And very few players in history have made quarterbacks as miserable as Reggie. What pushes White over the edge is the fact that he wasn't some one-dimensional 260-pound edge rusher. He could do everything. He could play anywhere on the line. He was bigger than you, stronger than you, faster than you, and had better technique than you. He could not be stopped.

You can make arguments for all kinds of players, but Reggie White would be my top non-QB of all time.

Brian BahrGetty Images Sport

I was talking to this girl at a party once, and she's a chemistry major. She told me that drinking pickle juice was the best hangover cure she'd ever tried. Question: if you meet a girl at a party, and in the first 15 minutes she cops to drinking pickle juice, should that have been a deal breaker? Also, please factor in that she was a solid 7.5.

Your pal, ElwayDidItBetter

First, it's good to know I'm already getting trolled with the names people are giving me. John Elway is the worst. Let's get that out of the way quickly.

Anyway, about this girl. The fact that she admits to drinking pickle juice within 15 minutes of meeting you, while disgusting, isn't what should concern you there (although that is definitely an over-share that soon). What SHOULD concern you is that within 15 minutes of meeting you she not only has shifted the topic to best hangover cures, but has admitted to trying multiple different cures. There are four possibilities here...

1. She's a raging alcoholic whose hangover cures are first and foremost on her mind. Because of her severe problem, she ASSUMES everyone else in the world needs hangover cures as badly as she does and is willing to do something as gross as drink pickle juice to solve the problem. Not only that, she assumes (again, because she's an incredible drunk) this is urgent news which must be shared ASAP upon meeting new people. Or,

2. She's a really terrible conversationalist who can't think of anything else to talk about, and so must admit to being super-gross (as she's decided that's preferable to being super-uninteresting). This brings along with it a whole host of other problems, such as the disturbing idea that she'd rather be gross than uninteresting (red flag there).

3. She's not into you at all and is attempting to drive you away. Of course, given that you're clearly a Broncos fan, that could well be the best explanation.

4. She doesn't think pickle juice is gross.

Given the myriad of possibilities here, I don't see a happy ending here. You'll either end up holding back the hair of a drunk, being bored out of your mind, getting shot down, or hanging out with someone who thinks pickle juice is yummy. I can't find a positive spin on any of those situations.

I should probably answer a question about the Chiefs now, or at least football...

Will Jon Baldwin ever live up to expectations? How will Andy Reid use him? How will the other receivers be used behind Bowe and Baldwin?


No. As a wide receiver. Also as wide receivers.

OK, fine, I'll be less succinct.

I don't have much hope for Baldwin. The guy can't break press coverage and is ridiculously slow when cutting. I'm willing to give all our WR's a break considering what they had to work with last year, but I'm not going to hold my breath while betting the farm.

I honestly see Donnie Avery bumping Baldwin down a spot. I don't think Avery is incredible by any means, but I think he's better than Baldwin and can actually stretch the field (and before you scream "he drops everything!!!" while foaming at the mouth, go look at his drop percentages before last year. Not nearly as bad). I think Dexter McCluster gets the lion's share of the snaps at slot WR, and when he's not doing that Devon Wylie will be.

I don't see where Baldwin fits in with that group. He can't even really do the whole "kind of a tight end" thing now that we're running three deep at tight end. He'll get a chance because he's guaranteed money whether we cut him or not, but I'll be stunned if he's ever even a solid #2 option. Here's hoping I'm really, really wrong.

Peter AikenGetty Images Sport

What is the air speed velocity of an unladen swallow?


Well, that depends, naturally.

Do you mean African or European?

I was listening to Mike Florio the other day and he broke down the NFL into 3 groups: (1) teams that have a franchise qb (2) teams that don't, and (3) teams that hope they have their franchise QB.

I read your Alex Smith article - well done by the way - but despite your optimism it seems to be that the Chiefs have now gone from firmly in group 2 to group 3 (as a beloved Vikings fan, I welcome you to said group). Do you think the Chiefs have a realistic chance to jump to group 1 this season? Out of all the teams that would seemingly be in group 3 (i.e. Vikings, Dolphins, Titans and a few others) which of those qbs, if any, do you see becoming a bona fide franchise QB?


First of all, I'm sorry to hear that (about being a Vikings fan). Enjoy Matt Cassel. Don't fall for his siren song of hard work and being an all-around great dude. It's a trick to get you to believe in him so he can rip your heart out and hand it to you and make you stare at the shattered pieces of your life while wondering if it's even worth going on and...

(breathes into paper bag)



All right, I'm OK now. Sorry, that wound is still a tad fresh for me. Anyway, about the three levels... I can get on board with that. Of course, the problem is the definition of "franchise quarterback." What does that really mean? It doesn't mean elite players in my opinion. It means guys you can win a Super Bowl with (without a massive stretch). And I believe this list is longer than most people believe. Joe Flacco proved that last year by going on one hot stretch after a "meh" career.

(insert people hysterically citing Flacco's playoff record as proof he's elite)

However, I'll divide franchise QBs into two categories... QBs you CAN build around and QBs you're HAPPY to build around . There's a big difference. You absolutely can build a Super Bowl winning team with the first group. But the margin of error is smaller. You're counting on the rest of the roster more, as well as luck. Though both a solid roster and luck are necessary for anyone to win a Super Bowl, you need less of both if your quarterback is in that second group.

So to answer your question, I think the Chiefs are definitely in position to be in group number 1 (franchise QB) this year... but with the caveat that Alex Smith is not going to join that group of QBs a team is HAPPY to build around. Because barring some miracle, he's not going to ever be in that group. I think even the most optimistic of Chiefs fans hope Smith can hang around the top 10 of QBs. If he does that, it's enough to win a Super Bowl. And I think there's a shot that happens.

Regarding the rest of the "we hope this guy is a franchise QB" groups... I'd put my money on the Dolphins and Ryan Tannehill being the most likely to get there. He wasn't great his rookie season, but he wasn't awful by any stretch. On that team, that's saying something to me. I think he'll do well eventually (provided they figure out their tackle situation. You can't throw from your back).

No offense to your Christian Ponder, but I don't see him ever making it. Just not enough physical talent, and the guy looks skittish to me. Plus, something about his name gives me a "not gonna happen" vibe. Can you ever picture a movie in which the star quarterback is named "Christian Ponder?" Me neither.

We have time for one more, right?

What is your favorite/most memorable Arrowhead Pride moment of all time?


Oh man, I could go a million different directions with this. The Ron Skitzo moments were classic. As were the, ahem, controversial columns in 2011 that questioned all of AP's fanhood. A comment from DTR that involved spit and... well, ok, can't say that one on a front-page column. Bewsaf and his dead hamster. A thousand-comment thread that involved a now-banned member calling people "fundies." BJ Kissel getting called an egomaniac by batman...

(It occurs to me I've spent way too much time on Arrowhead Pride.)

All right, I've settled on one. "Manningwatch 2012."

It was insane. We were tracking planes. We were following every nugget of information as if our lives depended on it. One user in particular managed to troll the entirety of AP by claiming to have "inside knowledge" of Manning arriving in a black SUV. And I admit... we all hung on his every word. I cannot express how impressive it is to successfully troll a group as ridiculously jaded as we are with completely false information.

I don't know if I've ever seen more insanity around AP than that week. Nor have I seen people more angry than the next time that user showed up and claimed he had insider information. People FLIPPED OUT. Good times.

In fact, that's a great question to leave things on. Favorite AP moments. Email 'em, comment on 'em, whatever. I want to hear about others' and Arrowhead Pride.

(Email me mailbag questions at, or tweet them @RealMNchiefsfan #mnmail.)


It's Game Time.

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