Kansas City Chiefs 2012: Correcting the 5 Biggest Misconceptions About the Team
Football spectators are going to have the wrong idea about a figure or a player. Sometimes these opinions will be formed on their own from what they see at home. Other times, it is possible that people form their opinion because of what they hear from the media.
With players, reporters, anchors and analysts all on Twitter and Facebook interacting with their fans, one comment can easily be blown out of proportion and creates a misconception about a certain subject.
Sometimes, the opinions formed turn out to be correct, while others are just rumors.
I'm here to clear up a few of these misconceptions and opinions about the upcoming Kansas City Chiefs team. What are the biggest misconceptions about this Chiefs team and why do people tend to have this preconceived notion?
As always, let me know what you think.
Misconception No. 1: Romeo Crennel Is a Bad Head Coach
As we all know, Romeo Crennel is taking over as the next head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs after being named the interim head coach following Todd Haley's termination last December.
Crennel went 2-1 with the Chiefs to help close out the season and finish 7-9. Even though the Chiefs struggled in the red-zone victory against the Packers and only scored seven points against the Broncos, Crennel found a way to make the Chiefs winners and come within one game of winning the AFC West after a season full of injuries and the departure of a head coach.
There are a lot of Chiefs fans who are terrified over Crennel being the head coach because of his history as a head coach with the Cleveland Browns.
Crennel’s four years with the Browns weren’t memorable. In fact, they were forgettable. He went 24-40 without one postseason appearance.
In 2007, the Browns went 10-6 under Crennel and barely missed the postseason. Crennel could not post a win total of more than six in his other three seasons.
But let’s face the facts. Cleveland is a struggling franchise and has not had a lot of good players to work with. The fanbase is probably more thrilled about the individual players rather than the team itself, as expectations are never high.
Just look at Bill Belichick.
Belichick spent five years in Cleveland as the head coach. In his first opportunity to prove himself as a head coach, he became a disliked figure by the fans. Belichick posted a 36-44 record in five seasons with only one winning season that resulted in a playoff win.
Despite not finding much success with Cleveland, Belichick bounced back and led the New England Patriots to five conference championship victories and three Super Bowl wins.
What do Crennel and Belichick have in common with their history in Cleveland? They both had only one winning season. Cleveland has not shined under the spotlight recently in the NFL. No head coach has posted a winning tenure in Cleveland since Marty Schottenheimer from 1984-1988.
Just look at current Browns head coach Pat Shurmur. He went 4-12 in his first season.
Perhaps we should not judge Crennel for his limited success in Cleveland. Actually, he has had better success than many recent head coaches there.
Misconception No. 2: Brady Quinn Will Push Matt Cassel for a Starting Spot
Brady Quinn certainly has a strong past. Quinn led Notre Dame to three bowl games during his college career and made a big name for himself.
Quinn entered the league under unexpected terms when he was drafted 22nd overall by the Browns. In his three years with the Browns, Quinn compiled a 66.8 quarterback rating. Quinn has been in the league for five years, but only accumulated statistics for three years.
You read that correctly. While playing quarterback, or rather, standing on the sidelines the entire time for the Denver Broncos, Quinn never saw action on the gridiron for two years.
I'm not avoiding the idea that Quinn might one day earn the starting job over Cassel, but it won't happen anytime soon.
Quinn has not played a regular season snap in two games. This will keep him on the sidelines come Week 1 of this season.
Misconception No. 3: Peyton Hillis Will Retire from the NFL
Earlier this past month, a report came out stating that new Chiefs running back Peyton Hillis would not be tagged by the Cleveland Browns because he is considering retirement to join the CIA.
Shortly after the rumors came out, Hillis cleared all rumors by letting everyone know that he is not considering retirement, calling it "100 percent false."
Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli signed Hillis to only a one-year deal. There might be multiple reasons for this. Some think that the rumor about retirement is a big reason. However, Pioli probably approached this signing differently because of the injuries Hillis dealt with in 2011. Pioli also wants to make sure Hillis is not a one-year wonder.
If Hillis proves his critics wrong and dominates with Jamaal Charles, Pioli will be more than open to the idea of re-signing Hillis and keep him in Kansas City for a couple of more seasons.
Misconception No. 4: Branden Albert Will Switch to Left Guard
Branden Albert was selected by the Chiefs in 2008 after playing mostly left guard for Virginia.
With scouts believing that Albert can play both guard and tackle in the NFL, then-head coach Herm Edwards and then-general manager Carl Peterson gave Albert their vote of confidence and placed him at left tackle. Albert gave up only four sacks during his rookie season.
Albert has had his ups and downs, but he is slowly climbing up the charts as one of the better left tackles in the league.
With tackle Riley Reiff and guard David DeCastro as potential possibilities in the 2012 draft and tackle Marcus McNeill available in free agency, some believe Albert will switch to guard to allow someone else play the position he currently plays for the Chiefs.
Albert had a lot of success as a guard in college, eventually rewarding himself to be selected in the first round. However, we must remember that Albert played that position in college.
Albert has missed four games since playing professional football in 2008. In the 60 games Albert has been active, he has started all 60 at left tackle. He has solidified himself as a tackle and is comfortable at that position.
If he is asked to play a new position after spending four years in the league, prepare to be disappointed. Albert has learned how to play the tackle position in the NFL—not guard.
While the primary responsibility of any offensive lineman is to protect the quarterback and push forward for running backs, each of the five positions can carry a different responsibility. This all depends on if the lineman is playing interior or outside on the line and if he is protecting the quarterback's blindside or not.
Albert will return to the Chiefs as the main left tackle come Week 1 of the 2012 season.
Mosconception No. 5: Dwayne Bowe Is a Top-Five Wide Receiver
Dwayne Bowe had a breakout season in 2010 when he led the league with 15 touchdown receptions.
Bowe had a 1,000-yard season for the third time in five years. He has turned into one of the strongest receivers in the league and has climbed high on the receiver charts. His name has been thrown around as one of the elite receivers in the league.
However, Bowe is not a top-five receiver in the league.
Many fans are giving Bowe the excuse that he worked with a lot of different quarterbacks in the past few years. Fans need to understand that that is not a legitimate excuse.
Larry Fitzgerald fans can use that excuse because he has played with 10 different quarterbacks since coming to the league in 2004. Fitzgerald has recorded 1,000-yard seasons six times in the eight seasons with the Cardinals. He isn't just putting up 1,000 yards. He has played well personally to place himself in the top five in nearly every receiving category.
Fitzgerald simply keeps his head down and plays no matter who is airing the ball to him.
I'm not stating whether Bowe takes his job seriously or not. That is not my place to speak. I'm just saying that Bowe is not a top-five receiver.
What Fitzgerald has gone through and how well he has done, despite the issues in Arizona, makes him a top-five receiver.
Bowe's drop habits also returned in 2011. After scoring four touchdowns from Week 3 to Week 5, Bowe went nine games without catching a touchdown.
His toughness has not allowed him to make the top-five charts. Bowe has to prove that no matter who the quarterback is, it won't set him back—nor can fans use that as a legitimate excuse.
Like every city in a big market, Kansas City has a lot of media outlets. Chiefs fans today have access to television, radio, newspapers, blogs, Facebook, Twitter and message boards. This allows them to follow their team in many ways.
With social networking websites becoming more and more popular, players, fans and the media can connect. When that happens, one comment can be misunderstood or come off the wrong way. One person's opinion can also influence another, for better or for worse.
Some people do a good job of avoiding the media and form their own opinion.
In the end, there will always be misconceptions. For example, Crennel coaching for Cleveland does not make him bad. Is it possible the CIA rumor tied into Hillis' name started online as a hoax?
A lot of rumors fly, but we never know what is true or what to believe or what opinion to have.
But in the end, Chiefs fans should be excited for the upcoming season. The front office has done a good job through free agency up to this point. If they continue to follow through, maybe the Chiefs can catch football fans by surprise and let them know that Peyton Manning and the Broncos are not the only good team in the AFC West.
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