My rose-colored glasses have turned crystal clear.
As I've previously written, I felt the Kansas City Chiefs needed to leave their current homestand at 6-3 to have a chance to stay in the race. That in itself was a stretch. The theory was they would need to win two of their next five games following this Sunday's game against Denver.
I believe I've always been reasonable when it comes to expectations for the Chiefs. The last time I expected them to win the Super Bowl was in the mid-to-late 1990s. Since then, I have looked for the good, hoped for the best and expected the worst.
As of today, the Chiefs sit at 4-4. I will, for argument's sake, give them the benefit of the doubt and predict a victory this Sunday. That said, I will not be surprised to see them sitting at 5-9 on December 18th.
Sadly, I can even see them finish their season with those same five wins. It goes without saying that I hope I am wrong and that they win every game from now through the Super Bowl.
I did, however, say that I thought I was reasonable when it came to expectations.
The Chiefs are not a team devoid of talent. I know the vast majority of Chief fans like to blame all of their woes on QB Matt Cassel, but that simply is not the case.
Their problems are not solely due to the injuries they've suffered either, though the injuries certainly have not helped.
"They" say that teams are built in the trenches, on the lines. I'm not sure who "they" are, but I know what they mean.
Offensive lines and defensive lines dominate games. There is no question that having superstar skill players can be the difference between great teams and championship teams.
The Chiefs have zero ability in those trenches. They cannot protect their quarterback and they allow the opposing quarterback time to send text messages to his wife before he throws the ball.
The Kansas City Chiefs have a great deal of talent on their team. There is no need for me to go through the roster. You know them as well as I do, with one exception: Matt Cassel.
Matt Cassel is an excellent quarterback who is more than capable of leading the Chiefs to a championship. Clearly, it is not his job alone. There are more talented quarterbacks in the league that have won championships, and some that have not.
Conversely, the opposite is true.
Joe Flacco, Mark Sanchez, Tony Romo, Matt Ryan, Josh Freeman and others are all comparable to Matt Cassel and they all have teams that are capable of winning. Every year I hear how great Phillip Rivers is. Why?
This is a debate that could go on forever, but the point is that Matt Cassel is a good quarterback—constantly calling for a different one will set the Chiefs back, way back.
The Chiefs are on a very good path right now, though this has been a very bad year. First the lockout, then the questionable way Coach Todd Haley handled the preseason, followed by the devastating injuries all make it doubtful the Chiefs will finish at .500.
That doesn't change the solid foundation this team is building. GM Scott Pioli, Haley and Matt Cassel are three of the most important pieces of what will be a Super Bowl-winning team.
Just not this year.