The Chiefs are getting some attention around the country right now and deservedly so.The jury is still out as to whether they are for “real” or not, but most agree they are heading in the direction regardless of this season.
Also, most people attribute this to the complete rebuilding of this team, starting with Scot Pioli, Todd Haley, Charlie Weiss and Romeo Crannel, followed by what seems like a first rate draft.
However, I hear very little about one person; Clark Hunt
As a KC Chief fan who actually watched the Chiefs win, yes win a Super Bowl, up to this very moment I have obviously gone through a lifetime of good and bad with this team, unfortunately more of the latter.
Coming from out of town, going to Arrowhead was always the same. Fantastic food and Blues Clubs on Saturday night, hanging out at the Plaza with almost everyone wearing their Chief garb, getting jazzed for Sunday. Then Sunday morning eating a brunch that would keep you full for two days, followed by the smell of the barbecue and finally the 80,000 people, who I believe by some law in Kansas City must wear red.
I think the NFL is made for television, but the experience Arrowhead always went far beyond just going to a football game.
I, like most Chief fans were disappointed they never even won a playoff game during those years when they were arguably the best team in the league, but starting Monday morning, you read the papers (yes, the still had them) and couldn't’t wait until Sunday.
The last few years have brought us back to the bleak time of the mid 70’s and 80’s. It was a quick and painful fall from the immovable defense to the high power offense to the Royals next door neighbors.
The minute Carl Peterson left, I hoped, and predicted that they would entice Scot Pioli to come to Kansas City. I knew that meant Herm Edwards was gone, which I agreed with. Herm Edwards is a exemplary man, but not a very good Head Coach.
Then came my next wish, Matt Cassel. I am a fan of Cassel, and believe by the end of this year, all of the fans that currently want to trade him for a six pack and pepperoni pizza will too.
Admittedly, I knew little about Todd Haley and was unsure about his hiring, but I had, and still have a great deal of trust in Scot Pioli.
The first year was tough and I believe that Haley was simply a rookie making rookie mistakes. People on blogs and forums wanted to fire him, but that’s just indicative of society in general, politics, sport, etc., I want it and I want it now. His progress from year one to year two appears to be nothing short of spectacular, so far.
The minute Charlie Weiss was fired from Notre Dame came my next hope. I never thought they would also get Romeo Crannel, so that was the big surprise.
Many people thought that Haley had too big of an ego to bring in these much older, wiser, experienced coaches, but I think it showed how much Haley matured in one year, or Pioli told him, too freaking bad, I’m hiring them.
Then the Draft, and of course I wanted them to get Eric Berry. Then they starting drafting players I knew little to nothing about, but it has taken very little time to show us why Clark Hunt brought Scot Pioli to KC.
The long winded point is that I believe, finally, in all the years that I have been watching this team they have built the most solid foundation they have had since the Len Dawson era.
It started at the top because I think Clark Hunt wants those days back. He wants Arrowhead to be known as the stadium other teams do not want to go play in. He wants to see the smoke haze settled over the parking lot as 80,000 red and gold lunatics pour into that stadium to will his team to victory.
Lastly, I think he wants to win a Super Bowl, like any owner, but he has another reason, a more important one.
I believe he wants that trophy for his Father. There is a reason the AFC Championship Trophy has his Father’s name on it. I think both the trophy with his Father’s name, as well as the Super Bowl Trophy will be coming to Kansas City once again, and in the not so distant future.
If so, the process will have started with Clark Hunt.