"Consequence is no coincidence"
"Lost Ones" - Lauryn Hill
Let us get right to the point. The Kansas City Chiefs need to fire Todd Haley. Allowing Haley to return next season would just be delaying the inevitable.
Many "charged to the game" Haley's public battles with Terrell Owens, Anquan Boldin and Larry Johnson. Labeled as malcontents their comments were ignored. Yet, less then a full year into Haley's tenure, he is on his third offensive coordinator, his second running back, his most explosive receiver was picked up off the street and his prized free agent acquisition struggled, just to look bad.
Remarkably, Haley has managed to escape the axe that certainly should be aiming for his job. The Chiefs began the 2009 season by going 0-4 in the preseason, but they managed to keep those games reasonably close. Kansas City finished up the year 4-12, managing to defeat a reeling Denver Broncos team to secure that fourth win. But 4-12 is apparently where most pundits expected this group to land, and 4-12 does not tell the whole story of the 2009 Kansas City Chiefs.
Six of those 12 losses were by 10 points or more. Eight of those 12 losses were by seven or more points. The most telling part of the 4-12 record is that four of those losses were to the Raiders, Bills, Browns and Jaguars. These teams have a combined record of 23-41. Wow. Then there is the "spectacular" relationship Haley has with his players—a relationship that has yet to produce someone who actually likes this man, or a relationship that has yet to produce a player who has improved under his tutelage.
Whether it is Keyshawn Johnson leaving the Jets after one year of working with Haley, Marty Booker going from 100 catches in 2001 to 52 in 2003 with the Bears, or coaching an underachieving group of receivers in Dallas until the arrival of T.O., and then antagonizing T.O. before Haley was shown the door. Haley has managed to escape culpability at each and every stop. Which brings us to the Arizona Cardinals. On the surface this team appears to have thrived under Haley's coaching, but to quote Lee Corso: "Not so fast, my friend."
There were reports throughout the season that Boldin and Edgerrin James were not happy with their roles in the offense. This came to culmination during the NFC Championship Game when Haley and Boldin were seen arguing during the game. Boldin later brushed it off, but this gave the football world a glimpse into the "coaching" style of Haley. A style that has turned rising star Dwayne Bowe into, yup you guessed it, a malcontent. A style that was shown once again by NFL films, where the coach was recorded saying "don't let me break you, don't let me break you" to Bowe after he scored a touchdown. Is that what he believes coaching is all about? "Breaking players"? My fault, I thought it was about coaching up players, not building Marines. Fitting though, since the man looks like at any moment he is going to say, "I love the smell of Napalm in the morning."
Again Haley has managed to escape culpability for his actions. The man who was suppose to know offense has just hired his third offensive coordinator in 11 months. Charlie Weis is going to replace the man, who replaced the man, who replaced the man. Rumors have Romeo Crennel coming in shortly as well. These two will no doubt help the Chiefs become a better team, but in order for the Chiefs to truly shine Weis should be given complete control, i.e. named the head coach, and Haley should be returned to Misery Island.