What Brady Quinn Starting Means for the Kansas City Chiefs Moving Forward
Crennel said Quinn is QB 4 foreseeable future: "I want (Quinn) to be the starting quarterback without having to look over his shoulder.’’
— Adam Teicher (@adamteicher) October 22, 2012
The good news is that a move—any move—was made.
The 1-5 Chiefs are going nowhere this season, which is humiliating after entering 2012 with hopes of returning to the postseason. While this move certainly can’t be looked at as a way to save the sinking ship, its significance will echo louder than just wins and losses.
Here is how the switch to Quinn as starting quarterback will affect the Chiefs moving forward.
The Possibility of Other Subtle Moves on the Way
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The Kansas City Chiefs are plugging Brady Quinn into the starting lineup not because he is the “quarterback in waiting,” but because of an injury and a subsequent fear of losing a fanbase.
No one really knows if Quinn is better under center than Cassel. It honestly doesn’t matter—that’s not why this move was made. It was made in desperation to save the franchise from drowning in its own pool of personnel negligence and ensuing arrogance surrounding said disregard.
Deciding to bench a healthy Cassel was no easy call for team brass. However, this move should open up the door for other minor tweaks that could help shed light on the future of this organization.
With this season already lost, the focus should now turn to where exactly certain players fit in the Chiefs’ future.
If it is all but guaranteed that a handful of guys won’t be around next season—for various reasons—Kansas City must use the remaining 10 games to determine if their replacements are either currently on the roster or if management will have to look outside the organization to fill the voids.
It is imperative that wide receiver Jon Baldwin receive more plays called his way. Rookie offensive lineman Donald Stephenson should step in more at left tackle and rookie nose tackle Dontari Poe should hardly ever be on the sidelines when the Chiefs are on defense.
A serious evaluation process on these guys begins now.
The Chiefs finally bit the bullet on the Cassel era. No other player should ever be afforded a four-year trial run in this city again.
Accepting That the Quarterback of the Future Is Not Currently on the Roster
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Brady Quinn wasn’t brought in this past offseason to vie with Matt Cassel for the Chiefs’ starting quarterback job. If Kansas City wanted a competition at the position, the team would have tried to retain Kyle Orton.
Instead, Quinn was to serve as a competent backup in case Cassel succumbed to injury again—which ended up happening.
However, it was never assumed that Cassel would have performed so poorly prior to being hurt. The fact that the Chiefs are sticking with Quinn—who is clearly not a better option right now or beyond 2012—even after Cassel has been cleared to play, is a sheer sign that neither has a future with this organization.
It is imperative that Kansas City begins to invest heavily on the quarterback position in the draft.
One man’s trash clearly isn’t another man’s treasure when it comes to the Chiefs selecting their on-field generals.
Renewing Interest from Downtrodden Fanbase
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Kansas City Chiefs fans are frustrated, and rightfully so. Their team is in shambles with seemingly no idea about how to turn things around.
The circumstances surrounding the change at quarterback weren’t sought after. However, the notion that the fans would no longer have to endure Matt Cassel’s incompetency under center was all that mattered upon seeing Brady Quinn take warm-up throws while Cassel lay lifeless on the turf at Arrowhead Stadium.
While no one knew the initial outlook of Cassel’s well-being, it was assumed that—once healthy—he would take back his spot, despite how bad he had looked this season. However, the news that Quinn would remain the starter could serve as a rallying cry for a fanbase that desperately needed it.
Instead of surrendering to the same dreadful on-field story each week, the fans now know that the men leading their team have hopefully swallowed a little pride by admitting that the Cassel era was a colossal blunder.
The Beginning of the End for Scott Pioli?
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Upon arriving in Kansas City just after the 2008 season, Scott Pioli made a huge splash by acquiring quarterback Matt Cassel in a trade with his former employer, the New England Patriots. And the move came with little backlash.
Pioli had his hand in drafting Tom Brady, so he had to have known what he was doing…right? Couple that with the franchise’s shaky quarterback history, and the Chiefs were ready to return to glory.
Now four years later, Cassel has been benched and Pioli has done little else to prove that he can properly manage this team.
His history in bringing in free agents has produced minimal impact, and his ability to locate top-end talent at the draft is almost laughable. If not for Eric Berry’s “potential” to be great and Justin Houston’s emergence as a third-rounder, Pioli would have nothing to show with four full drafts as the Chiefs’ head man under his belt.
The thought of Pioli being offered a contract extension is inexplicable. But with this season in disarray and no immediate answers in sight, his time with the Chiefs could be coming to an end.