Todd Haley and Josh McDaniels
It’s not easy to find interesting storylines from 20-point routs like yesterday’s 49-29 Denver Broncos' victory over the Kansas City Chiefs. But luckily for us, there are men like Chiefs coach Todd Haley.
After the loss, Haley was caught on camera refusing to shake Denver coach Josh McDaniels’ hand during the traditional midfield postgame coach’s meeting. Not only did Haley simply leave his counterpart hanging; the coach went so far as to angrily wave his finger at McDaniels while shouting a sentence or two before storming away.
Kansas City’s WDAF-TV turned over audio of the incident to The Associated Press, which reported that Haley said, “There's a lot of shit being talked about you.''
Take a look at the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MyLHtXWJvj8&feature=player_embedded
After taking a good amount of heat after the video went viral, Haley decided to offer a public apology for his actions today. Although he didn’t talk to McDaniels personally, the Kansas City coach did express his remorse and regret to the media.
Now this is nothing new to the NFL. We know that for the most part, many coaches simply don’t like each other for one reason or another. Sure, they all respect each other and are all part of the “fraternity” but the NFL is a competitive environment and that brings out some jealousies and insecurities that manifest themselves in this kind of behavior, especially when it comes to division rivals.
We’ve seen coaches completely blow off postgame handshakes like San Francisco’s Mike Singeltary did earlier this season after a loss to Atlanta. We’ve seen freezing cold, I’m-only-doing-this-because-I-have-to-type handshakes from frostbitten foes like Eric Mangini and Bill Belichick. And we’ve also seen the kind of fireworks that Haley flashed from coaches who don’t appreciate a little extra butt whooping.
So was Haley in the wrong to do what he did or was it just a bit of gamesmanship?
Considering he’s already apologized for the incident less than 24 hours after it happened, it’s hard to say it wasn’t a mistake on his part. He broke the unwritten code that says no matter how mad you are at the outcome: you bite your lip, don’t make a big fuss, shake the others guy’s hand and move on.
It’s true, many people are absolutely talking about Josh McDaniels and he's exemplified some less-than-endearing qualities during his tenure in Denver. But the time to tell him that isn’t after his team just got done stomping all over you. That looks tacky on your part, Todd Haley.
You got beat handily. So take it like a man, own up to it and move on.
There’s no need to draw any more negative attention to your team that just lost two consecutive crucial division games.
Adhere to the code, bite your lip and move on.