Winning with Weis: The Kansas City Chiefs Have Reason for Hope

Russell FikeCorrespondent IJanuary 8, 2010

SOUTH BEND, IN - NOVEMBER 21: Head coach Charlie Weis of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish claps for his senior players before lining up to enter the field for a game against the Univeristy of Connecticut Huskies at Notre Dame Stadium on November 21, 2009 in South Bend, Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name… 

That’s pretty much anywhere for Charlie Weis. 

Since serving as offensive coordinator for the New England Patriots for all three of their Super Bowl victories since the new millennium, Weis has been widely recognized.

Months ago, Weis was the highest paid college football head coach (before Lane Kiffin went to Tennessee in his escape from Oakland) where he achieved mixed results.

Weis' offensive wile led to strong offensive recruiting and the development of one of 2010’s top quarterback prospects, Jimmy Clausen. 

However, recruiting proved a different game than what Weis was familiar and the secluded planning of imaginative game design may be more suited to Weis than the emotional hoopla of the college game.

Kansas City head coach and last year’s offensive coordinator Todd Haley is a long-time friend of Weis.  While Haley bit off more than he could chew with the Chiefs, for him to be willing to relinquish control in any capacity is noteworthy.

Haley said in a press conference that he would have final say in any coaching changes, so there is significant initiative on Haley’s part to hand over the reigns. 

What does Weis bring to the Kansas City offense? 

What Haley and Weis do similarly

The strength of both a Haley and Weis offense is the short passing game with the intent of playmakers earning yards after the catch.

Tackle-breaking Dwayne Bowe can be a force if he can learn to hold onto the ball.  Yet, while Bobby Wade was a beneficial pickup this past year, KC lacks a strong slot receiver who can create matchup problems. 

It seems every team is looking for the Wes Welker/Davone Bess or even a Jordy Nelson, who can work underneath and crossing routes with sure hands and possess more quickness rather than straightaway speed.

What does Weis bring to the table 

Charlie Weis has been a guru in developing quarterbacks and will serve as mentor to Kansas City’s big investment of last year, quarterback Matt Cassel. 

Cassel has had accuracy issues and Weis will examine meticulously every intricacy of Cassel’s mechanics and help him develop in his reads. 

While the emergence of Jamaal Charles is exciting news for Chief fans, it is the maturation of Cassel around which significant success may hinge.

Also, Weis has a great eye for talent and this may be seen as early as the 2010 draft. 

What question marks remain

Star of the second half of Kansas City’s season, the speedy, elusive, and surprisingly physical Jamaal Charles has a skill set that provides great versatility to the offense.

Charles runs with the patience of Priest Holmes and has the hands of a wide receiver.  He is unlike any tool Weis has had in recent history.

New England’s Super Bowl teams never featured an elite rusher (outside of a brief spot in the sun for Laurence Maroney), and his ability to utilize a running back in the passing game is yet to fully be unveiled. 

Perhaps Weis never showed what he might do with a back like Charles because a back like Charles is rare.  He can be implemented similarly to the successfully versatile Brian Westbrook in Philadelphia.

Kansas City is putting the right people in their corner and while there are many gripes to be had with the team’s performance this year, let’s remember the squad doubled its number of wins.

Four wins might not seem great, but maybe eight is right around the corner. 

After that?  Perfect season?  Maybe not, but there is reason for hope in Kansas City.


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