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Friday September 5, 2008 8:12 pm

NFL Preview: Kansas City Chiefs




Posted by Raymond Leon Categories: NFL, College Basketball,

Tony Gonzalez of the Kansas City Chiefs

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
2007 RECORD: 4-12

Overview: The Kansas City Chiefs……wow. I don’t know where to start. When Trent Green left the team to get knocked out in Miami, the once deafening Arrowhead Stadium could’ve been mistaken for a ballet recital.  Team chemistry was at an all-time high!  Green was made for the Chiefs, and the Chiefs were made for Green. Why would Green leave an offense that had everything, but wide receivers, especially with the addition of Dwayne Bowe helping the receiving situation. The Chiefs looked tremendous on paper in the beginning of the season with All-Pros Larry Johnson in the backfield and one of the best tight ends in NFL history in Tony Gonzalez. Green left and was part of arguably one of the worst teams in NFL history, the 2007 Miami Dolphins. Moving on, the Chiefs weren’t better off without Green under center. Early in the season the Chief’s main rusher, Johnson, was injured. Chiefs’ fans then saw the return of a huge fan favorite, Priest Holmes. No sooner than he had come, Holmes received a career-ending back injury. Not to pour salt in the wound, but Kansas City wasn’t exactly a hot spot for QB’s either - Brodie who? Damon Huard? But, in all fairness there is no Q and B in team.  And unfortunately, no real protection as either as the offensive line gave up a jaw-breaking 55 sacks. Chiefs fans were hit hard last year, but as they say, “after the night the sun must rise.” In no other league is that theme more prevalent than in the NFL, and hopefully for the Chiefs.

Offense: During the offseason, the organization fired offensive coordinator Mike Solari after his first season, A few reasons he was let go were mainly due to a 4-12 season, as well as a lack of production. For example, the Chiefs averaged a mere 13 points per game in eight contests without All-Pro running back Larry Johnson. Chan Gailey, who has served as head coach at Georgia Tech for the past six seasons, was hired to replace Solari.  The offense has, and always will follow, a run-first game plan. As the Chiefs ride the backs of Johnson and new rookie Jamaal Charles of The University of Texas, they will often look towards Gonzalez as the team’s main receiver. Last season, Gonzalez was the team’s leading receiver, as he was targeted 154 times with 99 receptions, 1,172 yards, and five touchdowns, which represented his best season since 2004. In comparison, Dwayne Bowe in his rookie year, was targeted 117 times with 70 receptions, 995 yards, and five scores. Better luck next year? I think so.

Defense: Things didn’t become any brighter for KC fans in the immediate offseason. After an astonishing year, Jared Allen departed from Kansas City in a trade with the Minnesota Vikings. In a year that saw the rise of stock of all defensive linemen, Allen rose above the rest after a year where Allen totaled an amazing 64 tackles and 15.5 sacks, the All-Pro just left the building. KC has and always will be an offensive-minded team, but their defense has a few of the team’s weapons as well. Tamba Hali has been a tremendous run-stopper on the other side of the D-line, and will continue to do so in the absence of Allen. Hali must’ve been smiling pretty big on draft day when the Chiefs drafted first round pick Glenn Dorsey. Dorsey is a tremendous impact player who will come in as a rookie and have an immediate impact. The Chiefs also drafted a very interesting player in Virginia Tech’s Brandon Flowers. Flowers, a hard-hitter, looked to be one of the most promising corners to come out of this year’s draft. Overall, I don’t think that losing the best D-lineman in the league can make you better by any means. Hopefully, the addition of Dorsey will bring dominance back to Kansas City. Mr. Dorsey tap your new red cleats together, you’re going home.

Rookies: The Chiefs received an A+ from many draft analysts, as they should’ve - they only had about thirteen draft picks. The odds were in their favor to get at least a few picks right. Kudos to KC for picking Dorsey as the kid is a beast. He was unstoppable in college and if he works on his technique in the pros he could have a successful career ahead of him. The aforementioned Flowers is also great addition to the team since there is now a huge hole in the secondary without Ty Law.

Prediction: Overall, the Chiefs, once healthy will be a little better off. Herman Edwards has a lot of work ahead of him, especially since the quarterback situation isn’t totally clear cut. Without a strong leader the workload could once again be hoisted on Johnson’s back, and if he gets injured again then we could be having this same conversation next year. My prediction is 6-10.

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