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Ranking the Chiefs: what our readers think

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Arrowhead Pride contributors have now chosen their top five Chiefs. Let’s see what you, the readers, thought of those lists — and give you a chance to create your own.

Miami Dolphins vs Kansas City Chiefs Photo by Tim DeFrisco/Allsport/Getty Images

Over the last couple of months, we’ve published a series of Saturday-morning articles where Arrowhead Pride contributors named (and explained) their top five Kansas City Chiefs.

We set no criteria for these lists, allowing contributors to set their own standards for inclusion. If you read all of them (and if you haven’t, they’re all listed below) you’ve seen that these standards varied quite a bit. Some contributors considered off-the-field contributions. Others did not. Unsurprisingly, older members of the staff tended to include more players from bygone eras. Younger ones tended to pick players from more recent teams — sometimes players who are still active.

In all, 14 Chiefs players were named to these lists. Using a simple reverse scoring system — where a player ranked first gets five points and a player ranked fifth gets one — here’s our cumulative Top 5 list:

  1. Derrick Thomas (34 points)
  2. Patrick Mahomes (29)
  3. Len Dawson (17)
  4. Derrick Johnson (10)
  5. Jamaal Charles (8)

Note: Tony Gonzalez also had eight points, but was on two lists. Charles was listed on three.

But these rankings are subjective, of course. So along the way, readers were invited to vote on the quality of each list. They could say whether each was strongly perfect, somewhat perfect, somewhat imperfect or strongly imperfect.

I’ve kept track of those votes, using them calculate our readers’ perception of the quality of each contributor’s list. I played around with different ways to do it, finally settling on this formula:

  • Strongly perfect voting percentage multiplied by two
  • Somewhat perfect percentage multiplied by one
  • Somewhat imperfect percentage multiplied by minus one
  • Strongly imperfect percentage multiplied by minus two

In this way, strong reactions of approval (or disapproval) counted more than lesser reactions. Then I added these numbers together to come up with a reader approval score for each list. These ranged from 1.03 to minus 0.20.

Then it was a simple matter to adjust the scores from each contributor list by its reader approval score. For example, the points for the list scoring 1.03 became 5.15, 4.12, 3.09, 2.06 and 1.03 — and so on.

So based on their approval (or disapproval) of the eight contributor lists, here are the players our readers would pick as their top five Chiefs:

  1. Derrick Thomas (21.21 points)
  2. Patrick Mahomes (13.25)
  3. Len Dawson (10.66)
  4. Tony Gonzalez (5.72)
  5. Will Shields (4.96)

When we looked at how this came out, it struck us as a really good list — one that is pretty easy to defend. But even though our readers had input on it, it’s still skewed by the choices our writers made. What would it look like if our readers voted on it directly?

We’re going to find out.

In the comments for this article, please give us your list of the top 5 Chiefs. Next Saturday, we’ll use the same scoring system we used for our contributors to create a reader-generated list of the top 5 Chiefs.

To be considered, your list must be submitted before 12:01 a.m. this Friday. Can’t comment because you don’t have an Arrowhead Pride account? You have plenty of time. It just takes one day to create an account and be eligible to comment.

For it to be counted, your list must be in order from top to bottom. If it has more than five names, that’s fine — but only the first five will count in our calculations. If someone else has already posted a list you think is perfect, you can simply click “rec” on the comment; we’ll count each rec as an additional submission.

Just like our contributors, you can make your selections using any criteria you prefer. But if you need some help, here’s an alphabetical list of the 14 Chiefs our contributors chose, along with 29 others that commenters have brought up during this series.

  • Bobby Bell
  • Eric Berry
  • Buck Buchanan
  • Ed Budde
  • Jamaal Charles
  • Deron Cherry
  • Dustin Colquitt
  • Curley Culp
  • Len Dawson
  • Joe Delaney
  • Tony Gonzalez
  • Tim Grunhard
  • Abner Haynes
  • Priest Holmes
  • E.J. Holub
  • Derrick Johnson
  • Larry Johnson
  • Jim Kearney
  • Travis Kelce
  • Willie Lanier
  • Albert Lewis
  • Nick Lowery
  • Jim Lynch
  • Patrick Mahomes
  • Joe Montana
  • Christian Okoye
  • Ed Podolak
  • Andy Reid
  • Tony Richardson
  • Willie Roaf
  • Johnny Robinson
  • Jack Rudnay
  • Dan Saleaumua
  • Will Shields
  • Alex Smith
  • Jan Stenerud
  • Hank Stram
  • Dave Szott
  • Otis Taylor
  • Derrick Thomas
  • Emmitt Thomas
  • Jim Tyrer
  • Jerrel Wilson

So fire away. We’re looking forward to seeing what you think!


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