Daily Archives: Jan. 1, 2013

The chief Chief?

So Chiefs owner Clark Hunt fired Romeo Crennel as the team’s coach. Check. Absolutely had to happen.

Kansas City Chiefs owner Clark Hunt.

But can I please ask why general manager Scott Pioli still has his job, neutered as it is? Piolo not only hired Crennel, he also hired his predecessor, Todd Haley. And he paid Matt Cassel a bunch of money to come to Kansas City and quarterback the Chiefs four years ago.

None of Pioli’s big moves have worked. In fact, all have been disastrous. Yet he retains his position as GM, at least for now, as Hunt declares he’ll be the man in charge of hiring the next coach.

And when that coach is hired, Hunt says, he’ll be given extraordinary powers, probably powers that usurp those of the general manager.

What’s going on here? Has Hunt flipped his wig?

How much can Hunt be trusted. He has a legendary last name in Kansas City, no doubt about it. But during his six seasons as chairman, since taking over for his late father, Lamar, the Chiefs are 29-67. Decision making at Arrowhead Stadium has never been more flighty. This team is in disarray and the people who put it there are now expected to right the ship.

OK. Sounds like a plan.

Hunt is going to set his sights high when it comes to hiring a coach. Jon Gruden has been mentioned. That old Kansas City stand-by, Bill Cowher, is probably on Hunt’s wish list, too. But as it looks like Andy Reid might be headed to Arizona, one big fish is on the verge of being removed from the lake.

Meanwhile, what will Pioli’s role be? And why does it seem that he’s OK with a diminished say in the team’s operations?

Chiefs fans have been clamoring for major changes. Chang-es. Plural.

They’re not satisfied that the Crennel’s head has been the only one to roll. Pioli has done nothing – not one measly thing – to endear himself to this fan base.

Yet Hunt has kept him around. Sort of. Hunt hasn’t come out and said that Pioli is safe for the long term, just that he needs some time to sort everything out.

The Chiefs do have five Pro Bowlers, plenty of room under the salary cap and the first pick in this year’s NFL draft. This is not a franchise without value. Coming off a 2-14 season, the Chiefs are still the hottest ticket, and the hottest topic, in Kansas City.

But instead of optimism about the team’s future, there’s a general feeling among most that Hunt and his minions will find some way to screw this up. It almost feels like the Chiefs would be better off not having the first pick in the draft. With this team’s draft history, does anyone think they’ll get this pick right?

Even with their assets, there’s a rock-bottom feel to the Chiefs. And it feels like they might stay there for a while.

Despite the name he carries, Clark Hunt is in some ways anonymous in Kansas City. Few seem to know what he’s thinking or what he might be up to. He doesn’t say much and so far he hasn’t really done much.

Now that has to change. Hunt needs a coach and he’s not going to let his general manager have a say in who that coach will be. The Chiefs’ owner is owning up to what has been a terrible stretch in the team’s history. He says he’s embarrassed and that he’ll do everything within his power to make sure Kansas City starts winning football games ASAP.

But the way he’s going about things, at least so far, leaves more questions than answers.

What’s the Chiefs’ power structure going to look like? How does Pioli fit in? Will a “name” coach want to take over a franchise without a quarterback and with the baggage of Pioli?

Do you have faith that Clark Hunt can restore order in Kansas City? If so, can you pass some around?