clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The highs and lows of Kansas City Chiefs training camp

MNChiefsfan looks at the highs and lows of following KC Chiefs training camp coverage.

David Eulitt/Kansas City Star/MCT via Getty Images

The offseason is over! Ring the bells, light the fireworks, dance with your partner, life is good. The unbelievably long (or something) season of zero actual football news has finally ended, and we're back to hearing about football on a daily basis. The King is back!

Oh, and on a personal note, I finished the bar exam. Which means I'll be back talking with you fine folks on a regular basis again. You're welcome. Or I'm sorry. Depending on your view of me writing about football (and zombies. And food). But anyway, yeah, football!

Funny thing is that with football being back, some bad also comes with the good. With that in mind, I'd like to talk about the joys of being a crazy big fan of a football team during these summer months of teams preparing for the best sport in the world. Some of the joys are actual joys. Some of them are "joys" (you know, not really joys, but things that suck.  Glad I could explain the quotation marks).

The first "joy" (note the quotation marks) is one that has been plaguing the young season already...

The joy of injuries

As great at it is reading about actual football stuff, it comes at a price. Sometimes that price is really, really steep.

So far, the Chiefs have lost every player on the roster too injury for at least a day (or something like that). It's been a remarkable run of "tweaks" and "sprains" and "ouchies" (to use the technical terminology) over the last couple of weeks. I can only assume that their practicing in sand. Or perhaps on concrete.

And that's the problem. It's amazing being able to hear about actual players doing actual things, and try to figure out from that what the team will actually do this year. But every time it seems like the excitement level is rising, a player gets carted off the field and I slam my head into my keyboard repeatedly.

Sanders Commings has been the most obvious example this year. The coaching staff clearly likes the guy and wants him to play, and he's obviously talented. But after four straight years of good health in college, Commings has apparently had his legs transform into some combination of Brodie Croyle's arm and Tony Moeaki's ... everything.

It's infuriating.

The joy of practice reports

The great thing about practice reports is that you get to read into it and jump to wild conclusions after every single play. Of course, the awful thing about practice reports is that you get to read into it and jump to wild conclusions after every single play. I think I've lost count of the number of guys who have already made and then been kicked off the preseason All-Pro team so far.

The really tough part is that when ANY play gets made, you don't know what to take from it if your not there watching live. Oh, Alex Smith threaded a 50-yard bomb to Donnie Avery, you say? Awesome!  Or ... wait. Who was playing deep safety and corner? Why is the defense a sieve? How do the Chiefs expect to compete when they're giving up 50-yard bombs????

I've lost count of the number of guys who have already made and then been kicked off the preseason All-Pro team so far.

Defense picks off a pass or gets a sack? Awesome! Or ... wait. What the crap was Smith thinking? Why aren't he and his receivers on the same page? What happened to his accuracy? How do they expect to compete when they can't score points????

It's a bit of a vicious cycle. Don't get me wrong, being torn and conflicted over every piece of information is better than being bored. But sometimes I wonder.

The joy of camp quotes

"He's working"

"We've come a long ways already"

"We have ways to go yet"

"It's about getting in there and getting comfortable"

"We're getting used to the system"

"He's in the best shape of his life"

"We'll know more after (insert some time condition or event condition)"

"I'm just here to compete and give it my best"

"There's a lot of respect in this group"

"This is the best locker room I've ever been a part of"

"[Totally Unknown Player X] has been making a LOT of noise in training camp."

You have seen those quotes multiple times this offseason. It does not matter what team you are a fan of. They've happened. And they're as awesome as they are meaningless. Until the preseason games start, none of us has any idea how any player is really going to look this year. And even those preseason games are deceiving. Since they're, you know, preseason (remember Jerrell Powe dominating preseason every year? Me too).

The joy of overreactions and predictions

You want to know a the dirty little secret about analyzing tape / stats and making predictions? No one is any good at it. No one.

Seriously, take a look at some of the predictions made by pundits, analysts, stat geeks, and the like over the last few years (including me). I don't care what anyone has to say about all the times they've been right. EVERYONE is wrong more often than they're right. That's just the nature of the beast. If you think I'm crazy, take a look at this link.

That's a list of all the draft picks by the Ravens over the last zillion years. Ozzie Newsome is continuously praised as one of the best general managers in the business. And LOOK at all those whiffs. And not just in later rounds, either.  How's Michael Oher doing? Sergio Kindle? Never mind the multiple third and fourth rounders that have done jack and squat.

Now, my point isn't that Newsome is a bad talent evaluator. Far from it. My point is that anyone who claims to know what the future holds for a player with any kind of certainty is full of crap. I predicted that Dontari Poe would beast his second year after watching tape of his first year. I also predicted that Cyrus Gray would step up and provide playmaking ability if he got a shot. In other words ... yeah, I don't know much.

Of course, admitting that your fallible doesn't make page views come any faster, so this is the time of year when every single writer out there is going to make a thousand predictions.

I mean, I'm going to do it too. But I'm different and right all the time, so I don't count.

Alongside with predictions come overreactions. We hear that a an undrafted rookie free agent is tearing it up in camp and instantly start to speculate if he's going to take Donnie Avery's spot. Look, I'm not a huge fan of Donnie Avery, but the man's job is very, very, very, very, very, very unlikely to be in any kind of jeopardy. It's just not.

We hear that Allen Bailey is destroying worlds at training camp and start salivating at the idea of the defensive line finally coming together (please Lord, let it be true). We see that some unexpected guy took a few first team snaps and instantly start speculating as to whether there's a position battle we didn't know about. It's all very entertaining, and likely meaningless at the end of the day. After all, we talkin' bout practice.

Practice. Not a game. Practice. How silly is that?

Can't wait for the lights to come on and real(ish) football to begin. In the meantime, did you hear that Eric Fisher has looked solid? Bet he's gonna have an All Pro season ...

(The mailbag shall return. Email questions to or tweet to @RealMNchiefsfan)

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Arrowhead Pride Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your Kansas City Chiefs news from Arrowhead Pride