Super Bowl Week Begins … Monday Cup O’Chiefs

Somewhere in the Texas Nation headed to Dallas

His name was Jones Ramsey and he was the sports information director at the University of Texas many years ago. That’s him to the right.

Ramsey was once asked what were the two biggest sports at Texas?

“Football and spring football,” Ramsey said without taking a breath.

There are very few places where football is more important than Texas. Whether it’s the pros, college or high school, it’s always topic No. 1 on the sports agenda in the Lone Star State.

Except right now, in the aftermath of the 2010 season when things didn’t go right in so many avenues of Texas football. The Cowboys and the Texans had bad seasons and missed the playoffs. The Texas Longhorns had their worst season in decades. No Texas team was in the national championship game in college football.

And to rub salt in the wound, the Super Bowl is coming to Texas. The eyes of football will be on the eyes of Texas and the only thing related to the Cowboys that will be in the picture is their stadium.

Super Bowl week kicks off Monday with both teams arriving in Dallas and escaping their snowy hometowns so they can begin practicing for the championship game. It figures to be an interesting week, filled with great personalities and story lines with two of the classic NFL franchises involved in the meeting.

Our boots hit the ground in Big D on Monday as well and we’ll be there all week giving you some of the better stories and behind the scenes type activities. …Read More!

Jamaal Charles – Chiefs MVP 2010

The fans have spoken and they did so with an overwhelming vote for RB Jamaal Charles as the most valuable player for the Chiefs in the 2010 season.

Charles led the Chiefs in rushing, was the most productive offensive player in yards produced, was named first-team All Pro and was chosen for the Pro Bowl.

And essentially half of the voters who took part in the polling voted for Charles as the most important player on the Chiefs roster in their 10-7 season that included an AFC West championship. He received 47.5 votes.

Finishing second was OLB Tamba Hali, who dominated the voting among those who did not select Charles. Hali received 29.5 votes.

Others receiving votes were QB Matt Cassel with 10 and ILB Derrick Johnson with two.

Here’s what some of the voters had to say:   …Read More!

A Pro Bowl To Forget

For the first time in five years, the Chiefs were heavily represented in the league’s annual Pro Bowl Game. Those five members wearing red and gold got to take part in one forgettable evening of football as the NFC beat the AFC 55-41

It was one of the worst played football games you’ll see and it was evident that even though there was a difference of $22,500 between the winning team ($45,000) and the losing team ($22,500), it didn’t matter to the players taking part.

No one was expecting a game of grandeur but this had to be one of the sloppiest Pro Bowls in recent memory. There were 13 touchdowns scored and eight turnovers in all. There were so many missed tackles they could not be counted.

The play that best exemplified the game was the last touchdown scored by the AFC, that allowed them to pull with 13 points with less than a minute to play. Chiefs QB Matt Cassel was in the game. He dropped back to pass and there was no pass rush. He connected with teammate WR Dwayne Bowe for 21 yards. Bowe lateraled back to AFC RB Montell Owens, who held on for six yards. Owens lateraled back towards Bowe, but C Alex Mack jumped in front of the ball, grabbed it and ran 40 yards for the touchdown. It’s really too silly to explain.

So check out the video. …Read More!

Your Hall Of Fame Voting – Round #2

We’ve had a chance to total up the votes from the first round of voting for the 2011 class for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Now, it’s on to the second step.  That first vote was slicing the list of modern era candidates from 15 to 10. Now, the vote is taking those remaining 10 down to five finalists.

This procedure is how the class of inductees will be selected by the Hall’s Board of Selectors, a 44-person body made up of media people from around the country. I’ve been honored to be part of the voting group for 16 elections now. In any given year the most frequently asked questions that I receive from fans are about the Hall of Fame and the process. To give everyone a chance to understand, I’m opening up the voting to readers this year. The next step is:  

  • The second vote will be cutting from 10 to 5.
  • The final vote will be on the remaining five, with a vote of yes or no on each man individually. To achieve Hall of Fame status a player must receive 80 percent of the vote, but there also must be a minimum of four or a maximum of seven persons elected, including the seniors candidates. For this exercise we are going to assume that both seniors candidates Chris Hanburger and Les Richter are voted in. So that means among the 15 modern era players a minimum of two and a maximum of five can be elected. If two players do not achieve 80 percent, then tie-breakers come into play and I won’t bother you with any of that.

Eliminated in the voting from 15 to 10 were: RB Jerome Bettis, WR Tim Brown, C Dermontti Dawson, DE/LB Chris Doleman and RB Curtis Martin.

That leaves these 10 still active: WR Cris Carter, DE Richard Dent, RB Marshall Faulk, DE Charles Haley, DT Cortez Kennedy, WR Andre Reed, OT Willie Roaf, Contributor Ed Sabol (NFL Films), CB Deion Sanders and TE Shannon Sharpe.

Polls are now open. Just post your five candidates as a comment. They need not be in any certain order. Voting runs through Tuesday, February 1 at 6 p.m. At that point, we’ll tabulate the votes and then move onto the final round.

Getting Out of Mobile … Sunday Cup O’Chiefs

On America’s highways and byways with Mobile in the rearview mirror

It was not a performance or outcome that will lead to lifelong memories. No the 62nd Senior Bowl that went down in Mobile’s Ladd-Pebbles Stadium look like an all-star football game where the players had four practices to put together a cohesive team.

In this January, the team that got as close to being a team was the South squad that was coached by Chan Gailey and his Buffalo Bills coaching staff. The South team grabbed a fairly early 24-10 victory over the North squad.

But the winner and the score do not matter. The Senior Bowl was largely about the week of practices leading into the game. The guys from the NFL love it because it provides them with a forum to evaluate young players while they are doing football moves. At the NFL Combine it’s running, jumping and lifting in their underwear.

In Mobile, the pads and helmets are on and there’s a far greater chance to judge players by the strength of their football character, rather than pure 40-yard dash times.

That’s why the big winner from Saturday was the game MVP, Florida State QB Christian Ponder. He came into the game with questions about his healthy, specifically some shoulder problems he had during the 2010 season with the Seminoles. He showed throughout the week that whatever problems he might have had were not a problem in Mobile. He threw with authority and good – not great – accuracy.

There’s plenty of tape on Ponder and his career at FSU, so the personnel types will not overreact to any performance in an all-star game. But what Ponder did by completing seven of 13 passes for 132 yards and two touchdowns was allow his name to be taken off the board under questionable. Generally, that can be a nice jump for a player. …Read More!

Just A Dad & Daughter In Hawaii

It’s Pro Bowl week in Hawaii and that means a little bit of work for the NFL all-stars and a lot of family time.

That’s what Chiefs QB Matt Cassel is getting done in the picture above. That’s his daughter Quinn and luckily this photo was snapped so she’ll have something to show she made a trip to Hawaii before she celebrated her first birthday.

Senior Bowl Blog – Chapter 3

From Mobile, Alabama

The Senior Bowl was a ghost town on Thursday. At the game’s headquarters the Renaissance Riverview Plaza Hotel, the lobby was about 75 percent less crowded than the first part of the week. Attendance at Thursday’s practices was down about the same amount.

Most of the NFL’s 32 coaching and personnel staffs escaped Mobile Wednesday night, or Thursday morning. Chiefs head coach Todd Haley got back to Kansas City early enough Wednesday evening to see one of his daughters in a gymnastics meet.

NFL teams get tape of all the practices during the week and the Senior Bowl game. Given that, why do they come at all and then blow out before the week is done? “Good question,” answered Jets and former Chiefs personnel maven Terry Bradway. “It’s a busy time of the year in scouting, so time is at a premium.”

Some teams were still there on Thursday. Bradway’s flight back to New Jersey was cancelled because of the snowstorm that hit the east coast. But the personnel staffs for the Packers, Browns and Saints were still there, sitting together in the stands and comparing notes.

Given the fact the Saints won last year’s Super Bowl and the Packers are playing in next week’s championship game, maybe some other teams should take notice.


Take a look at the picture above. That’s Alabama QB Greg McElroy and he’s not just posing for a picture, he’s being taped for an interview that will be shown Friday night at some sort of Crimson Tide booster club.

It is quite an amazing scene to watch McElroy as he rolls through the hotel lobby and deals with fans after practices. Despite the fact he’s probably only a mid-level draft prospect, McElroy is easily the most popular player on the South team. …Read More!

Senior Bowl Practice Report – Thursday 2X

From Mobile, Alabama

Thursday was the final day for full practice sessions for both the North and South teams as they head towards Saturday’s Senior Bowl.

But the Thursday work was a lot more low-key than what was seen in the previous three days. The players were in shorts without shoulder pads. South coach Chan Gailey cut his practice to just about 65 minutes, while North coach Marvin Lewis tried to dial down the intensity of his team’s work.

There was a bit more individual coaching during the sessions like the picture above. On the left, that’s former Chiefs assistant coach and now Bills offensive line coach Joe D’Alessandris working with Baylor’s Danny Watkins on snapping the ball. Watkins has never played center before and this was his first taste of firing the ball between his legs.

It was pretty typical Senior Bowl moment for the coaching staffs that are coaching and not scouting, and the players. The coaches do everything they can in a very short time period to not only create a cohesive team, but show the players ways they can make themselves more valuable to NFL teams.

Here are some observations from the Thursday morning and afternoon sessions. …Read More!

Senior Bowl Stud … Thursday Cup O’Chiefs

From Mobile, Alabama

If the good folks that run the Senior Bowl presented an award called “Stud of the Year” then there’s no doubt the winner of that honor in 2011 would be Von Miller.

The Texas A&M linebacker has established during three days of practice here that he’s at the head of the class among the 100+ players taking part in the week of practices leading up to Saturday’s game.

“I don’t think anybody would argue that he’s probably the best player out here,” said Jets and former Chiefs personnel man Terry Bradway. “He’s a play maker.”

SCENE: The ball is snapped by the South offense and RB Charles Clay (Tulsa) leaks out of the backfield, plants his foot and cuts to his left, running a drag route across the second level of the defense. After back pedaling a few yards into coverage, Miller spies Clay and reacts immediately, pasting himself to the hip of the running back. There’s no space for the quarterback to throw the ball to Clay, so he passer looks elsewhere.

Coming off his sterling career at A&M, Miller seems to be one of those tweeners – he’s too small to play defensive end, which is essentially what he did in the Big 12 Conference. But can he play linebacker and can he cover receivers on the short field? If there’s one thing that Miller has done with his week of practice work in Mobile, it’s been to diminish any concerns teams would have with his ability to play the outside linebacker spot in the 3-4 defense. …Read More!

Senior Bowl Practice Report – Wednesday 2X

From Mobile, Alabama

It was a glorious day here on the Gulf coast, with clear blue skies, a warming sun and chilly temperatures in the morning for the North squad’s third workout of Senior Bowl week.

We’ve combined our reports, starting with the A.M. session, followed by the P.M. practice. Here’s the skinny.

North/A.M. Practice

It would have to go down as one of the most unusual sites of the week. Monster OT Nate Solder (Colorado) was leading a sweep to the left, all 6-8 ¼, 319 pounds of him in full pads. Coming up to try to stop the run was CB Kendric Bruney (North Carolina), all 5-9, 181 pounds.

But hand it to Bruney, he did not bail out of his run support. He engaged and bit Solder in the ankles … no I’m kidding there, but it would have been a great scene. Solder put his hand on Bruney’s shoulder and the cornerback fell to the ground. Luckily, Solder did not fall on him, because given the nearly one-inch and 138-pound advantage they may have needed a backhoe to come on the field to dig the little man out.

“That’s football,” Bruney said after practice. “You can’t run away from stuff like that. It’s what makes the game fun.” …Read More!

Chiefs Front-Office Chopping Continues

The destruction/remake of the Kansas City Chiefs has been going on since January of 2009. The vision of the Hunt Family, led by team chairman Clark Hunt has not yet been realized because long-time, loyal employees continue to lose their jobs for one reason – change for the sake of change.

On Wednesday, at least 11 employees were known to be fired by the club. That included the 29-year employee Brenda Sniezek who was the director of community relations. Also released was director of logistics Ken Blume, who has been with the organization for 25+ years. Joining them on the waiver wire was associate director of public relations Pete Moris, an employee since 1994.

Others who found themselves unemployed were: Evelyn Bray, accounting manager; Heather Coleman, stadium operations personnel director, Pam Johnson, administrative assistant-finance; Lisa Siebern, player development assistant; Tom Stephens, creative services manager and three members of the team’s sales department.

Quarterback Talk … Wednesday Cup O’Chiefs

From Mobile, Alabama

Everybody always wants to talk to the quarterbacks. Put six of the biggest names among college quarterbacks in the same place for a week, and there’s no doubt they will lead the scoreboard when it comes to interviews and autographs.

But then, these guys are used to being in the spotlight and having every part of their game and life under the microscope.

And there’s a chance – maybe even a good chance – that one of these six quarterbacks could be joining the Chiefs for the 2011 season.

GM Scott Pioli isn’t about to pull his cards away from his chest and divulge draft strategy. But the circumstantial evidence creates a scenario where Pioli almost has to grab a QB with one of his draft choices.

First, backup QB Brodie Croyle is without a contract for the coming season. There was little he showed in relief of starter Matt Cassel that screams for the Chiefs to bring him back. That will create an opening. …Read More!

Senior Bowl Blog – Chapter 2

From Mobile, Alabama

It’s football and that means injuries and there was a big one in the last 24 hours here at the Senior Bowl.

Oregon State DT Stephen Paea will undergo surgery on Thursday for a torn meniscus in his right knee. He suffered the injury during Monday afternoon’s practice and was diagnosed on Tuesday after an MRI and conversations with doctors.

Paea was considered one of the top interior defensive line prospects in the 2011 NFL Draft.

Injuries on the North team led to the addition of WR Dane Sanzenbacher (Ohio State) and CB Richard Sherman (Stanford). They were on the field for practice on Tuesday …

Not working in the Tuesday practice was South WR Edmond Gates out of Abilene Christian …

One of the best sights of the week so far came after the Tuesday morning practice where LB Casey Matthews (Oregon) stood at mid-field talking with his father, former NFL LB Clay Matthews, Sr., and his uncle, former NFL blocker and Hall of Famer Bruce Matthews … …Read More!

Senior Bowl Practice/Tuesday P.M.

From Mobile, Alabama

Everyone was back at Ladd-Pebbles Tuesday afternoon for the South team’s practice under the direction of Buffalo Bills head coach Chan Gailey and his staff.

We spent most of our time eyeballing the South offense. The play of the P.M. practice came from TE Luke Stocker (Tennessee) who made a nice catch over the middle, took a fairly hard hit from Safety DeAndre McDaniel (Clemson) and held on to the ball.

Here are some other observations from the 90-minute session:

QUARTERBACKS – Check out my report on all the Senior Bowl QBs coming Wednesday morning. Quick analysis on the South three – Christian Ponder (Florida State) looked the most polished of the trio and showed a strong deep ball. Greg McElroy (Alabama) was accurate on the short balls, not so much on the longer throws. Andy Dalton (TCU) showed the most mobility when chased out of the pocket.

TIGHT ENDS – the South group is a step up from the North squad at this position. Stocker is big – 6-5, 255 pounds – runs well and as he showed, has good hands. D.J. Williams (Arkansas) is more of a receiving TE and runs very well, more like a wide receiver than tight end. Preston Dial (Alabama) lumbers a bit when he runs his route, but seems to have a good pair of hands. …Read More!

Senior Bowl Talk – DE Cameron Jordan

From Mobile, Alabama

Any NFL team that’s looking to improve their defensive line situation is going to consider Cameron Jordan.

The 6-4, 287-pound product of the University of California has been very impressive in Senior Bowl practices. Jordan has shown a burst off the edge and he’s also displayed power to hold his spot against the run game.

During his time with the Golden Bears, Jordan played in both the 4-3 and 3-4 defenses, so he believes he can handle any position in the defensive front.

Jordan is also a very enthusiastic and well-spoken young man, as you can tell if you listen.  cameron jordan1

Senior Bowl Practice Report-Tuesday A.M.

For the second day in a row it looked like the skies could open up at any time and dump a lot of rain on Ladd-Pebbles Stadium while the North squad was practicing. But just like Monday, coach Marvin Lewis got his team through a 90-minute session with nary a rain drop.

Here’s some of what I saw with the North team, and I was concentrating on the defense, and specifically the back seven – the North is playing a 4-3 defense in this game:

– The most impressive player in the North secondary is the smallest – 5-9, 181 pounds – CB Kendric Burney from North Carolina. What Burney lacks in size, he makes up for in fundamentals and the ability to compete. The only times he was beaten during the practice is when a receiver as running away from him. When there was a jump ball, or the receiver stopped to catch a ball, Burney was knocking passes down. He also had the most impressive defensive play of the day, when he made a diving interception and had sense enough to jump up and beginning running. Remember, college football rules say when the guy with the ball’s knee touches the ground, he’s down. Not so in the NFL, where the ball carrier has to be tackled. A lot of times college players forget the difference, but Burney did not. …Read More!

Back Off Cutler … Tuesday Cup O’Chiefs

From Mobile, Alabama

Pull together representatives from every coaching staff in the NFL and put them in one spot, and it can generate some remarkable conversations.

The biggest topic on Sunday night that continued into Monday had nothing to do with the Senior Bowl and the 100+ players that are in town for a week of practice and Saturday’s game.

It had everything to do with Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler.

The aftermath of NFC Championship Game on Sunday has left Cutler and the Bears a smoldering ruins of a team dealing not only with the crash of losing the game and a trip to the Super Bowl, but the demolition of a football career.

“How do you salvage Cutler at this point?” asked one NFL head coach walking through the lobby of the headquarters hotel for the Senior Bowl.

Let me get this off my chest right up front – I think anyone that has labeled Cutler a quitter because he did not continue to play on his injured knee in Sunday’s game is an idiot. Yes, I mean I-D-I-O-T-S, big, nasty, ugly dolts who should be ashamed of themselves.

That would include several current NFL players, who took to Twitter after the game to fire verbal torpedoes at Cutler. It would include former NFL types like Deion Sanders and ESPN‘s Mike Golic, who took to Twitter and the airwaves to question Cutler’s manhood. The Idiots Club would include pundits, columnists and radio tin throats too numerous to mention in the media, 99.9 percent of whom would have no idea what trying to play with a knee injury feels like.

And I don’t want to leave out any fans, including those in heartbroken Chicago that have fired flaming vitriol in Cutler’s direction. They are least culpable however, because they are fans and they are reacting with emotion, rather than knowledge and reason. …Read More!

Senior Bowl Practice Report – Monday

From Mobile, Alabama

It was a busy day for all parties involved in the first full day of Senior Bowl week.

It started in a convention center ballroom for size and weight. Next was the practice field, like the photo left of former Chiefs TE Jonathan Hayes, now TE coach of the Cincinnati Bengals, working with a pair of North squad tight ends. By the end of the day, the players were enjoying an evening of food at the U.S.S. Alabama.

It all started with the annual weigh-in, or an exercise that easily could be called “Mr. Universe-Senior Bowl.” The ballroom in the Mobile Convention Center of is full of NFL types sitting in chairs, some with laptops and others with clipboards.

From one corner of the room parade all 104 players taking part in Senior Bowl week. They walk in wearing only a pair of workout tights, in essence underwear. No shoes, no shirt, no hats, no pants.

They walk to a stage, where one person measures them and yells out the height. From there, they move to another spot on the stage where they step on a scale. Once their weight comes up, another person yells it out for all in the room to hear. The player then steps down from the stage and walks down the middle aisle of the audience, with several hundred people watching.

It all seems so silly, evoking a cattle call and beauty pageant at the same time.

“It’s not intimidating or anything, but it was kind of weird,” said Oregon LB Casey Matthews. “I’m sure they want to make sure we aren’t hunchbacks and have all our limbs, but I think they can get that information with a lot less fanfare.

“It’s all part of the process, so it’s no big deal.”

This is how the NFL gets eyeballs on these guys and collects information on height and weight that’s not been filtered by the coaching staff or pr staff on campus. Sometimes, the difference can be striking. West Virginia running back Noel Devine was listed by his school as 5-8, 180 pounds. …Read More!

Charles Earns All-Pro Distinction

The term All-Pro gets thrown around a lot by the fans and media when talking about the best players in the NFL. Pro Bowl players become All-Pros for some people, even though there’s no connection between the two designations.

The toughest distinction for an NFL player to get is to be named All-Pro – that means you are the best of the best in the NFL, all conferences, all divisions combined.

Chiefs RB Jamaal Charles earned that distinction on Monday when the Associated Press announced its All-Pro team for the 2010 season. Charles is part of the first-team, joining Houston’s Arian Foster in the two running back slots on the 12-man offense. The defense also has 12 slots on the first team.

With 50 voters selecting two backs each, Charles received 33 votes, while Foster had 45. The next closest running back was Atlanta’s Michael Turner with eight votes.

The last time the Chiefs had an All-Pro first-team member was in 2008 when TE Tony Gonzalez earned the distinction. The last time the Chiefs had a RB on the first team was 2006 when Larry Johnson was named All-Pro.

Plenty of Chiefs received mention in the voting: …Read More!

Senior Bowl Blog – Chapter One

From Mobile, Alabama

It was a dark, cloudy day along the Gulf coast on Monday. Temperatures in the 50s, making it perfect weather for the first day of practices at the Senior Bowl.

We’ve got a lot of information coming on the players, but this is also the place to see and be seen in the NFL. Owners, general managers, head coaches, coordinators, assistant coaches, personnel leaders, scouts and agents are everywhere. Oh … and there’s about 100 players hanging around as well.

Everyone expected some rain drops during the team practices Monday afternoon, but at least for the North team that worked at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, there was no precipitation, although there was plenty of perspiration. Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis and his coaching staff kept the players moving from one drill to the next. With the South team practicing at the same time, the crowd was about half of what it normally will be on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday when the practices are staggered.

Here are some of the familiar faces seen at the North practice on Monday afternoon: …Read More!

It’s Evaluation Week … Monday Cup O’Chiefs

From Mobile, Alabama

The Renaissance Riverview Plaza Hotel sports a lobby that has two levels. On Sunday, both upstairs and downstairs were wall-to-wall football.

Clusters of men in warm-up suits sat and watched Green Bay-Chicago battle in the NFC Championship Game. Right next to them, would be a few other guys locked in an intense conversation, paying no attention to the Packers and Bears. Those conversations were invariably between an NFL scout and one of the players who will participate in the Under Armour Senior Bowl this coming weekend.

Sunday was check-in day for the nearly 100 players that are scheduled to take part in the week of practices leading up to next Sunday’s game. But there was very little time for those players to get settled or enjoy a look around Mobile. Those folks working for the 32 NFL teams were all competing for attention.

Like Pat Sperduto. Chiefs fans don’t know Sperduto, who is an area scout for GM Scott Pioli’s personnel operation. For some reason Pioli likes to keep his personnel people under wraps, so few people outside of the football operation at the Chiefs knows who these guys are.

But Sperduto was working hard Sunday afternoon. Sitting in side-by-side high backed chairs, he first grilled LSU linebacker Kelvin Sheppard. A half-hour later, Auburn linebacker Josh Bynes had moved into the chair. Both players answered questions, and Sperduto took notes as fast as he could.

That’s what this week in Mobile is all about – the opportunity to crack the shell a bit on these NFL prospects that until this week had largely been protected by their college programs. These all-star games like last Saturday’s East-West Shrine Game, the Senior Bowl, and a few other minor games that are played, are the first opportunity many teams have to sit down and have a conversation with these guys. The football ability is on tape for all to evaluate. The personality and intangibles have to come from other areas, and that’s what these lobby conversations are all about. …Read More!

Chiefs Need Bigger Bus for Hawaii

The traveling party for the Chiefs at the Pro Bowl this week grew from four to six on Sunday when the NFL told the team that OLB Tamba Hali and SS Eric Berry would be jumping into the game to fill spots on the AFC roster for members of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

When the Steelers beat the Jets and punched their ticket to the Super Bowl, that pulled all of their players out of the game. Hali will take the place of LB James Harrison, while Berry, the fifth overall pick of the 2010 NFL Draft, replaces S Troy Polamalu.

Along with RB Jamaal Charles, QB Matt Cassel, WR Dwayne Bowe and LG Brian Waters that’s now six members of the Chiefs that will take part in the game. The last time the Chiefs had that many players in the game was the 2005 Pro Bowl when TE TOny Gonzalez, QB Trent Green, RB Larry Johnson, OT Willie Roaf, G Will Shields and Waters made the game..

Berry is the first Chiefs rookie to make the all-star game since LB Derrick Thomas in 1989. Hali is the first Chiefs LB to make the game since Thomas in 1997.

It’s An Old-School Super Bowl

It will be the team of the 1960s against the team of the 1970s facing off for Super Bowl supremacy.

Thankfully, it won’t be Bart Starr vs. Terry Bradshaw. It will be Aaron Rodgers, Ben Roethlisberger and two of the best defenses in the NFL going head to head on Sunday, February 6 at Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Kickoff is right around 5:25 p.m. CST and the game will be broadcast by Fox-TV.

The Steelers advanced to their third Super Bowl in six years and eighth all-time thanks to 121 rushing yards from RB Rashard Mendenall and a big-play defense that returned a fumble for a touchdown and staged a late goal-line stand in a 24-19 victory of the Jets at Heinz Field in the AFC Championship Game.

At Soldier Field in Chicago, Rodgers ran for a touchdown, NT B.J. Raji returned an interception for a score and CB Sam Shields picked off two passes to lead the Packers in a 21-14 victory over Bears in the NFC Championship Game. It’s the fifth time that Green Bay has finished its season in the Super Bowl. The last time was 1997, when they lost to Denver.

This day was about defense, as three of the four units produced points – Pittsburgh and Green Bay scored touchdowns and the Jets picked up a safety. The four teams combined to turn the ball over eight times.

Notes From East-West Shrine Game

From Mobile, Alabama

Our boots are on the ground here in Mobile for the start of Senior Bowl week and that gave us a chance to touch base with a few of our sources who migrated over from the East-West Shrine Game in Orlando.

For those who cared, and we are still trying to find that person, the East beat the West on Saturday afternoon 25-8.

Here are 10 players who grabbed the scouts attention during the week of practice leading up to Saturday’s game:


  • Idaho QB Nathan Enderle (right) – he’s got prototypical size at 6-4, 232 pounds, with a gun on his right shoulder. Plus, he was team captain in 2010, so there are intangibles there as well. Scouts say he’s a good athlete, but his technique in throwing the ball needs adjustment, not only with his delivery, but his footwork.
  • Syracuse RB Delone Carter – most of the scouts considered Carter along with North Carolina DT Marvin Austin the two best players attending the Shrine Game week. Carter showed great explosion and shifty moves. Tries to play bigger than he is and that sometimes got him in trouble. Scouts want to see more north and south running from Carter – he likes to dance around a bit when he has the ball.
  • SMU WR Aldrick Robinson – he did the two things that scouts always notice from WRs: he caught the ball and he found a way to get open. Robinson showed excellent running after the catch ability with some explosion.
  • Delaware QB Pat Devlin – among the quarterbacks in Orlando, he was the most advanced both fundamentally and mentally. Showed during the week the ability to roll quickly through his progressions and then made good decisions. Devlin’s not very mobile; he’ll have to stay in the pocket.
  • Southern Cal TE Jordan Cameron – began as a college basketball player at BYU in 2006. Moved to Snow Junior College in ’07, then to USC in ’08 where he played basketball and football. In ’09 he was a wide receiver, in ’10 a tight end. Scout say he shows the body control and skills of being a WR, with his size at TE. Considered a developmental type with a big upside. …Read More!

Finalist For Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2011

(in alphabetical order)


Running Back … 5-11, 243 … Notre Dame … 1993-95 Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams, 1996-2005 Pittsburgh Steelers
13 seasons, 192 games … Selected by Rams in 1st round (10th player overall) of 1993 draft … Earned Rookie of Year honors … Finished rookie season with seventh best rookie rushing total in league history… As rookie finished second in rushing yards and third in total yards from scrimmage … First Rams rookie to rush for 1,000 yards since Eric Dickerson, 1983 … Rams leading rusher 1993-95 … Steelers leading rusher 1996-2001, 2003-04 … Steelers leader in total yards from scrimmage, 1996-2001 … His fifty 100-plus yard games ranks 1st in Steelers history … At time of retirement, his eight 1,000-plus yard seasons was tied for third-best in NFL history … His 13,662 ranks fifth all-time in career rushing yards … Ranked 19th all-time in combined net yards at time of retirement … Voted to Pro Bowl six times: 1994, 1995, 1997, 1998, 2002, 2005 … Named All-Pro in 1993 (AP, PFWA), 1996 (AP); All-Pro second-team 1997 (AP); All-NFC 1993 (UPI, PW); All-AFC 1996 (UPI, PW), 1997 (PW) … Born February 16, 1972 in Detroit, Michigan. 


Wide Receiver/Kick Returner … 6-0, 195 … Notre Dame … 1988-2003 Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders, 2004 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
17 seasons, 255 games … Heisman Trophy Winner … Selected by Raiders in 1st round (6th player overall) of 1988 draft … As rookie led NFL in kickoff returns, return yards, and yards per return average  …  Led NFL in receptions, 1997 … Set Raiders franchise records for receptions, receiving yards, and punt return yards … At time of retirement his 14,934 receiving yards were second-highest total in NFL history; 1,094 receptions were 3rd; and 100 touchdown catches were tied for 3rd … Also gained 190 rushing yards; 3,320 punt return yards, 3 fumble return yards; 1,235 kickoff return yards … Total of 19,682 combined net yards, 5th all-time at time of retirement … Scored 105 total touchdowns (100 receiving, 1 rushing, 3 punt returns, 1 kickoff return) … Voted to Pro Bowl nine times, 1989 and 1992 as kick returner, 1994-98, 2000 and 2002 as a receiver … All-Pro choice as a kick returner, 1988 … All-Pro wide receiver, 1997 … Was named All-AFC as a kick returner, 1988, punt returner, 1991, and wide receiver, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997 … Born July 22, 1966 in Dallas, Texas.


Wide Receiver … 6-3, 202 … Ohio State … 1987-89 Philadelphia Eagles, 1990-2001 Minnesota Vikings, 2002 Miami Dolphins
16 seasons, 234 games … Selected by Philadelphia in the fourth round of the 1987 Supplemental Draft … First reception as a pro was a 22-yard touchdown catch … Durable; he played a full 16-game season in 13 of his 16 seasons … In 2000, became only the second player in NFL history to catch 1,000 career passes … Recorded 1,000 receiving yards in a season eight straight years … Broke the 100-yard receiving plateau 42 times during his career … Ranked second on the NFL’s all-time list for total receptions (1,101) and receiving touchdowns (130) at retirement … His 130 TD receptions came from 13 different passers … Caught 70-plus passes in 10 seasons … His 122 receptions in 1994 was a then-NFL single-season-record … Named to the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1990s and received the 1999 NFL Man of the Year Award … In 2002, returned to the field when he joined the Miami Dolphins in midseason when injuries decimated team’s receiving corps … Was first- or second-team All-Pro 1994, 1995, and 1999 … Selected to play in eight Pro Bowls (1994-2001) … Born November 25, 1965, in Troy, Ohio.


Center … 6-2, 288 … Kentucky … 1988-2000 Pittsburgh Steelers
13 playing seasons, 184 games … Steelers’ second-round draft pick (44th player overall), 1988 NFL Draft … Second-team All-SEC at Kentucky … Started five of eight games played as a rookie at right guard … Missed eight weeks at midseason with knee injury … Became starting center in 1989 replacing future Hall of Famer Mike Webster … Doubled as team’s long snapper, 1988-1993 … Named Co-AFC Offensive Lineman of the Year (with Richmond Webb) by NFL Players Association, 1993 … Selected as NFL Alumni Offensive Lineman of the Year, 1996 … Played in 170 consecutive games before streak ended in 1999 due to hamstring injury … His exceptional speed and strength enabled him to do things not typical of a center … Named first-team All-Pro six consecutive years (1993-98) … Selected to play in seven consecutive Pro Bowls (1993-99) … Anchor on offensive line that led Steelers to five AFC Central Division championships and one AFC championship … Born June 17, 1965 in Lexington, Kentucky.


Defensive End … 6-5, 265 … Tennessee State … 1983-1993, 1995 Chicago Bears, 1994 San Francisco 49ers, 1996 Indianapolis Colts, 1997 Philadelphia Eagles
15 seasons, 203 games … Selected by Chicago in eighth round (203rd player overall) of 1983 NFL Draft … Played in every game as rookie … Became full-time starter early in 1984, beginning a 10-year period in which he recorded 10 or more sacks in eight of 10 seasons … An intimidating player, could speed rush or power rush the quarterback … Twice, once in 1984 and again in 1987, recorded 4.5 sacks in a game, both vs. Raiders … One of game’s premier pass rushers with 137.5 career sacks, which at time of retirement third all-time best … Led NFC with team record 17.5 sacks, 1984 … Following year, led NFL with 17 sacks as an integral part of Bears dominating defense … His three tackles, 1.5 sacks, one pass defensed and two forced fumbles earned him Super Bowl XX MVP honors following Bears lopsided 46-10 win over Patriots … Career statistics include eight interceptions (one touchdown), a safety, and fumble recovery for a touchdown … Named first- or second-team All-Pro four times, All-NFC five times … Selected to play in four Pro Bowls (1985, 1986, 1991, 1994) … Born December 13, 1960 in Atlanta, Georgia.


Defensive End/Linebacker … 6-5, 270 … Pittsburgh … 1985-1993, 1999 Minnesota Vikings, 1994-95 Atlanta Falcons, 1996-98 San Francisco 49ers
15 playing seasons … 232 games … Selected by Vikings in 1st round (4th player overall) in 1985 draft … Drafted as linebacker, moved to starting defensive end position final three games of second season … Tallied team-high 11 sacks in 1987… First of six sack titles with Vikings … Named All-NFL, All-NFC and voted to first Pro Bowl in 1987 … Finest season came in 1989, led NFL with 21 sacks, one shy of single-season record at time … In 1992, named NFC’s Defensive Player of the Year when he recorded 14.5 sacks and 64 tackles, returned interception for touchdown, forced six fumbles, recovered three fumbles, and had safety … Spent two seasons with Atlanta (1994-95) three with the San Francisco (1996-98) … Returned to Vikings  for final season, 1999 … His 150.5 sacks was NFL’s fourth best at time of retirement … Tied for third in the NFL Record Book with eight seasons 10 or more sacks … Also intercepted eight passes returning two for touchdowns; recorded two safeties; and scored touchdown on a fumble recovery during career … Named to eight Pro Bowls; first-team All-Pro in 1987, 1989, 1992 and first-team All-NFC four times … A member of the NFL’s All-Decade Team of 1990s … Born October 16, 1961 in Indianapolis, Indiana.


Running Back … 5-10, 208 … San Diego State … 1994-98 Indianapolis Colts, 1999-2005 St. Louis Rams
12 playing seasons … 176 games … Selected by Colts 1st round (2nd player overall) in 1994 draft … Rushed for 143 yards, scored three touchdowns in rookie debut … Finished season with 1,282 rushing yards and AFC-leading 11 TDs … Also caught 52 passes for 522 yards and touchdown … Named Rookie of the Year … Rushed for 1,000 yards in seven of first eight seasons … In 1999 became second in NFL history to eclipse 1,000-yard mark in both rushing and receiving and set then-record for yards from scrimmage (2,429) and was named NFL’s Offensive Player of the Year for first of three straight times … Named NFL MVP in 2000 after setting single-season record for touchdowns (26) that included league-leading 18 rushing touchdowns … Was first of two straight seasons he led NFL in scoring and touchdowns … First-team All-Pro 1999, 2000, 2001 … Second-team All-Pro in 1994, 1995, 1998 … Voted to seven Pro Bowls… All-AFC twice and All-NFC three times in career … First player in NFL history to gain 2,000 yards from scrimmage in four straight seasons (1998-2001) … Retired as NFL’s ninth-ranked rusher (12,279 yards) … Recorded 767 receptions (16th all-time at retirement) for 6,875 yards, 36 touchdowns … His 19,154 yards from scrimmage was sixth all-time … Born February 26, 1973 in New Orleans, Louisiana.


Defensive End/Linebacker … 6-5, 242 … James Madison … 1986-1991, 1999 San Francisco 49ers, 1992-96 Dallas Cowboys
12 playing season, 169 games … Selected by 49ers in 4th round (96th player overall) in 1986 draft … Only player in NFL history to play on five winning Super Bowl teams (SBs XXIII, XXIV, XXVII, XXVIII, XXX) … Began career at linebacker and led 49ers in sacks in each of first six seasons … Recorded four double-digit sack totals with 49ers including 12 as rookie and career-high 16 in 1990 … Moved to defensive end after trade to Dallas … Added two more double-digit sack seasons, 1994, 1995 … Suffered serious back injury, limited to just five games, 1996 … Retired after undergoing surgery … After a two-year hiatus, signed with 49ers as backup defensive end for two playoff games in 1998 … In 1999 came back for final season, added three sacks to finish career with 100.5 … Twice named NFC Defensive Player of the Year (1990, 1994), voted to five Pro Bowls, named All-Pro twice, once as linebacker, once as defensive end … Played in six NFC championship games over seven seasons … Starting at left outside linebacker in 49ers 1988, 1989, 1990 championship games; at right defensive end in Cowboys’ 1992, 1993, 1994  conference championships … Member of 10 division championship teams during his 12 seasons … Born January 6, 1964 in Gladys, Virginia.


Defensive Tackle … 6-3, 298 … Northwest Mississippi Community College; Miami (FL) … 1990-2000 Seattle Seahawks

11 playing seasons, 167 games … Seahawks 1st round draft pick (3rd player overall), 1990 NFL Draft … First Team All-America choice at Miami in 1989 … Extremely durable, played in 167 of possible 176 games … Injury ended streak of 116 straight games played and club record 100 consecutive games started … Named first-team All Rookie by PFWA … Voted to a team-record eight Pro Bowls (1992-97, 1999, 2000) … Named first-team (1992, 1993, 1994) or second-team (1991, 1996) All-Pro five times … Named NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 1992 while playing for a 2-14 team … That season led all interior linemen with 14 sacks and career best 92 tackles; had four forced fumbles; recovered fumble and batted down two passes … Recorded one of finest seasons in 1999 recording 73 tackles, 6.5 sacks, intercepting two passes, helping Seahawks reach playoffs for first time since 1988 … In all, registered 58 sacks, intercepted three passes and scored one touchdown on fumble recovery during career … He twice led the team in sacks (1992 and 1995) … Born August 23, 1968 in Osceola, Arkansas.


Running Back … 5-11, 207 … Pittsburgh … 1995-97 New England Patriots, 1998-2005 New York Jets
11 playing seasons, 168 games … New England Patriots third round draft pick (74th player overall) of 1995 draft … Although missed most of senior season with ankle injury, showed no effects during rookie season … Ran 30 yards on first NFL carry, scored game-winning touchdown and became first Patriots player to rush for 100 yards in pro debut … Had rookie-record-tying nine 100-yard games … Finished year as AFC’s leading rusher; 1,487 yards, 14 touchdowns … Named Rookie of the Year, voted to first of five Pro Bowls … Joined Hall of Famer Barry Sanders as only runners ever to start careers with 10 straight 1,000-yard seasons … Led his team in rushing in each of his 11 seasons … Had finest year in 2004 … Rushed for career-high 1,697 yards winning his lone NFL rushing title … Also tied career-high nine games with 100-plus yards rushing … Suffered knee injury in final year snapping streak of 119 consecutive starts that kept him from reaching 1,000-yard mark for only time in career … First- or second-team All-Pro 1999, 2001, 2004 … Retired as NFL’s fourth all-time leading rusher; 14,101 yards on 3,518 carries, 90 rushing touchdowns … Rushed for 100-plus yards 56 times … Caught 484 passes for 3,329 yards and 10 touchdowns … His 17,421 combined net yards placed him 10th all-time … Born May 1, 1973 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


Wide Receiver … 6-2, 190 … Kutztown … 1985-1999 Buffalo Bills, 2000 Washington Redskins
16 seasons, 234 games … Selected by Buffalo in fourth round (86th player overall) of 1985 NFL Draft … Most prolific receiver in Buffalo Bills history … His 941 career receptions still Bills record and 266 more than number two on that list … His 13,095 career reception yardage, 36 games with 100-plus receiving yards, and 15 catches in a game are current team records … Known for his “yards after catch” … His 951 career receptions were third all-time in NFL history at the time of his retirement … His 13 seasons, including nine consecutive, with 50-plus receptions is exceeded only by Jerry Rice … Reed is tied with Bills running back Thurman Thomas for team best career touchdowns (87), most on passes from Jim Kelly … Kelly-Reed tandem held NFL record for career receptions (663) until 2004 when eclipsed by Peyton Manning to Marvin Harrison … Known for toughness as he made most of his receptions over the middle … A four-time All-AFC choice and three-time All-NFL second-team, was selected to play in seven consecutive Pro Bowls (1989-1995) … Added an additional 85 catches for 1,229 yards, including five 100-yard games in postseason play … Born January 29, 1964 in Allentown, Pennsylvania.


Tackle … 6-5, 300 … Louisiana Tech … 1993-2001 New Orleans Saints, 2002-05 Kansas City Chiefs
13 seasons, 189 games … Selected by New Orleans in 1st round (8th player overall) of 1993 draft … First offensive lineman selected … Started all 16 games at right tackle, did not miss offensive snap during first season earning All-Rookie honors … Following year switched to left tackle and was voted to first of 11 Pro Bowls, named first-team All-Pro, All-NFC, and NFLPA’s NFC Offensive Lineman of the Year for first of two consecutive seasons … Played nine seasons in New Orleans, starting 131 regular season games … Also started two playoff games including franchise’s first-ever postseason win, a 31-28 victory over defending Super Bowl champion St. Louis Rams in 2000 NFC Wild Card Game … Knee injury shortened  2001 season to just seven games … Traded by the Saints to Chiefs in exchange for a third-round draft pick … Rebounded from injury to regain form and earned All-Pro honors in three of four seasons with Chiefs … Was a key part of Kansas City’s offensive line that helped Chiefs lead NFL in points scored in 2002, 2003 … Team also led AFC in total yards in 2003 and NFL in 2004, 2005 … Was named first-team All-Pro seven times (1994-96, 2000, 2003-05), All-NFC six times, and All-AFC three times … A member of the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1990s … Born April 18, 1970 in Pine Bluff, Arkansas.


Founder/President/Chairman … Ohio State … 1964-1995 NFL Films
Man behind idea of NFL Films …Aspiring filmmaker, who at age 45 hatched idea of forming Blair Productions, a film company named after daughter … In 1962 contacted NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle with offer to double $1,500 bid for rights to film 1962 NFL Championship Game … Rozelle accepted and Sabol’s film company was off and rolling …  From start, incorporated unique creative angles inspired by his background in drama society at Ohio State and brief stint on Broadway … Rather than single camera located high in stadium, Sabol added sideline camera to catch intensity of players … Blair Productions continued to shoot NFL action for next two years before Sabol convinced NFL it needed own motion picture company … With that, NFL Films was born … Served as President until 1985 when he turned over role to son Steve … Senior Sabol continued to serve as Chairman through his retirement in 1995 … During tenure, NFL Films won 52 Emmy Awards … With Ed Sabol’s vision, NFL Films revolutionized manner in which sports are presented … Firsts in film include use of microphone on coaches, referees and players; use of reverse-angle replay; adding popular music to footage; and popular bloopers videos … Began producing weekly NFL highlight shows in the late 1960s, introduced first sports home video in 1980 … Born September 11, 1916 in Atlantic City, New Jersey.


Cornerback/Kick Returner/Punt Returner … 6-1, 195 … Florida State … 1989-1993 Atlanta Falcons, 1994 San Francisco 49ers, 1995-99 Dallas Cowboys, 2000 Washington Redskins, 2004-05 Baltimore Ravens
14 seasons, 188 games … Selected by Atlanta in 1st round (5th player overall) of 1989 draft … Returned punt 68 yards for touchdown in NFL debut … Scored total of six touchdowns on punt returns, three TDs on kickoff returns, and returned nine interceptions for scores during career … Multi-faceted athlete returned one fumble for TD and had 60 receptions for 784 yards and 3 TDs … In all, recorded 53 career interceptions including five with Ravens when he returned to field after three-year retirement …  Member of NFL’s All-Decade Team of 1990s as both cornerback, punt returner … Led NFL in punt returns, 1998, with 15.6 average … Led NFC in kickoffs in 1992 and interceptions in 1991, 1993 … Was widely regarded as “shutdown corner” during career … Named first-team All-Pro nine times at cornerback in addition to receiving All-Pro as kick returner in 1992 and punt returner 1998 … Elected to eight Pro Bowls … Retired second all-time in interception return yardage (1,331), tied for second for most interceptions returned for touchdown in a career (9) and a season (3) … His 303 yards gained on interception returns in 1994, third best in NFL at retirement …. In 1994 became first player to have two 90-yard interception returns for touchdowns in same season … Named NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year, 1994 … Born August 9, 1967 in Fort Myers, Florida.


Tight End … 6-2, 230 … Savannah State … 1990-99, 2002-03 Denver Broncos, 2000-01 Baltimore Ravens
14 playing seasons, 204 games … Three-time All-America at Savannah State … Selected by Broncos in the seventh round (192nd player overall) of the 1990 NFL Draft … At time of retirement, his 815 career receptions and 10,060 yards and 62 TDs were all NFL career records for a tight end … His 214 receiving yards vs. Kansas City in 2002 is an NFL single-game record for a tight end … Tied NFL record with 13 receptions in single post-season game (vs. Raiders, 1993) … Three times during career amassed over 1,000 yards receiving … Earned first- or second-team All-Pro honors five times and first- or second-team All-AFC honors six times … Selected to play in eight Pro Bowls (1993-99, 2002) … In 1996 led all tight ends in receptions (80), receiving yards (1,062 yards), and receiving touchdowns (10) … Following season had career best 1,107 receiving yards for career best 15.4 yard average … An integral part of Broncos Super Bowl XXXII and XXXIII and Ravens Super Bowl XXXV championships … Born June 26, 1968 in Chicago, Illinois.

Senior Bowl Players – Offense

BLUE – North team                   RED – South team

Quarterbacks (6)

  • Andy Dalton                 6-3    220    TCU
  • Colin Kaepernick        6-6    225    Nevada
  • Jake Locker                  6-3    230    Washington
  • Greg McElory              6-3    225    Alabama
  • Christian Ponder        6-3    227    Florida State
  • Ricky Stanzi                  6-4    230    Iowa

Running backs (8)

  • Anthony Allen         6-0    229    Georgia Tech
  • Noel Devine               5-8    180    West Virginia
  • Roy Helu                     6-0    220    Nebraska
  • Kendall Hunter         5-8    200    Oklahoma State
  • Derrick Locke            5-9    190    Kentucky
  • DeMarco Murray     6-1    207    Oklahoma
  • Bilal Powell                 6-1    215    Louisville
  • Da’Rel Scott                5-11   200    Maryland 

Fullbacks (2)

  • Owen Marecic                     6-1    244    Stanford
  • Charles Clay                        6-3    235     Tulsa

Wide receivers (11)

  • Vincent Brown                  6-0     195       San Diego State
  • Edmond Gates                   6-1      200      Abilene Christian
  • Leonard Hankerson        6-3     205       Miami
  • Dwayne Harris                  6-0     205       East Carolina
  • Ronald Johnson               6-0     185       Southern Cal
  • Jeremy Kerley                  5-10   192       TCU
  • Niles Paul                            6-1      220      Nebraska
  • Austin Pettis                      6-3      203       Boise State
  • Greg Salas                           6-2      210       Hawaii
  • Courtney Smith                6-5      230       South Alabama
  • Titus Young                       5-11     175       Boise State

Tight end (6)

  • Preston Dial                 6-3    237    Alabama
  • Lance Kendricks        6-4    241    Wisconsin
  • Mike McNeill               6-4    235    Nebraska
  • Lee Smith                      6-6    267    Marshall
  • Luke Stocker                6-6    253    Tennessee
  • D.J. Williams                6-2    251    Arkansas

Tackle (11)

  • James Brewer              6-8    331    Indiana
  • Gabe Carimi                 6-7    327    Wisconsin
  • James Carpenter        6-5    300    Alabama
  • Anthony Castonzo    6-7    308    Boston College
  • Brandon Fusco           6-5    305    Slippery Rock (Pa) 
  • Marcus Gilbert           6-5    322     Florida
  • DeMarcus Love          6-5     315     Arkansas
  • Jason Pinkston           6-4     305    Pitt
  • Derrick Sherrod         6-6    305    Mississippi State
  • Nate Solder                  6-9    315    Colorado
  • Danny Watkins           6-4    310    Baylor

Guard (6)

  • Clint Boling                  6-5    315    Georgia
  • Rodney Hudson        6-2    282    Florida State
  • Kevin Kowalski          6-4     299    Toledo
  • John Moffitt                6-5    323    Wisconsin
  • Stephen Schilling      6-5    308    Michigan
  • Lee Ziemba                  6-8    319    Auburn

Center (1)

  • Kristofer O’Dowd       6-5    300    Southern Cal

Kicker (2)

  • Kai Forbath                  6-0    191    UCLA
  • Josh Jasper                 5-11   160    LSU

Senior Bowl Players – Defense

BLUE – North team                   RED – South team

Defensive end (8)

  • Sam Acho                         6-3    260    Texas
  • Pierre Allen                     6-5    265    Nebraska
  • Allen Bailey                     6-4    285    Miami
  • Christian Ballard            6-5    297    Iowa
  • Jeremy Beal                     6-3    267    Oklahoma 
  • Cameron Jordan            6-4    283    California
  • Ryan Kerrigan                 6-4    263    Purdue
  • Pernell McPhee              6-4    285    Mississippi State

Defensive tackle (7)

  • Sione Fua                     6-2    306    Stanford
  • Jarvis Jenkins            6-4    315    Clemson
  • Chris Neild                  6-2    301    West Virginia
  • Stephen Paea              6-1    311    Oregon State
  • Phil Taylor                  6-4    340    Baylor
  • Cedric Thornton       6-4    295    South Arkansas
  • Ian Williams               6-2    305    Notre Dame

Outside linebacker (7)

  • Mason Foster          6-2    242    Washington
  • Mark Herzlich         6-4    244    Boston College
  • Ross Homan            6-0    227    Ohio State
  • Von Miller                6-3    243    Texas A&M
  • Brooks Reed            6-3    260    Arizona
  • Lawrence Wilson   6-1    226    Connecticut
  • K.J. Wright               6-4    250    Mississippi State

Inside linebacker (7)

  • Josh Bynes                6-2    235    Auburn
  • Nate Irving               6-1    231    North Carolina State
  • Greg Jones                6-1    240    Michigan State
  • Casey Matthews      6-2    235    Oregon
  • Colin McCarthy       6-2    240    Miami
  • Kelvin Sheppard     6-3    240    LSU  
  • Chris White                6-4    245    Mississippi State

Cornerback (10)

  • Curtis Brown               6-0    184    Texas
  • Jalil Brown                   6-1    205    Colorado
  • Kendric Burney          5-9    190    North Carolina
  • Rashad Carmichael   5-11   186    Virginia Tech  
  • Jaiquawn Jarrett        6-2    202    Temple
  • Joe Lefeged                   6-0    205    Rutgers
  • Curtis Marsh                 6-1    193    Utah State
  • Johnny Patrick            6-0   190    Louisville
  • DeMarcus Van Dyke  6-1    185    Miami
  • Shareece Wright          5-11  185    Southern Cal

Free safety (3)

  • Quinton Carter                6-1    200    Oklahoma
  • Marcus Gilchrist            5-11   190    Clemson
  • Eric Hagg                           6-2    210     Nebraska

Strong safety (4)

  • Ahmad Black                   5-9    189    Florida
  • Zac Etheridge                 6-0    213    Auburn
  • DeAndre McDaniel       6-1    215    Clemson
  • Da’Norris Searcy           6-0    215    North Carolina

Punter (2)

  • Alex Henery                    6-2    175    Nebraska
  • Chas Henry                      6-3    222    Florida

Long snapper (2)

  • Danny Aiken                   6-4    255    Virginia
  • Christian Yount             6-1    243    UCLA

Championship Weekend Cup O’Chiefs

It’s now been 17 years since the Chiefs were part of the NFL’s final four, semi-finals weekend.

As good as last weekend was with four games, it’s the conference championship weekend and there are only two games, but the outcomes of those contests change lives, both inside the competing teams and out.

Chicago, Green Bay, Pittsburgh and the New York Jets make up the surviving quartet. In this group, the Jets are a puppy playing in their 51st season compared to the Bears, Packers and Steelers. The Decatur Staleys became the Chicago Bears in 1922, a year after Green Bay got the Packers. In Pittsburgh they got the Pirates football team in 1933. It would be 1940 before they became known as the Steelers.

It’s the second championship weekend in the last three years that does not feature a No. 1 seed from either the AFC or the NFC. The Patriots and Falcons both were knocked out last weekend leaving the two conferences with No. 2 and No. 6 seeds playing for a ticket to the Super Bowl at Jerry World/Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

There are familiar faces on all four teams for Chiefs fans. Starting on the bottom left and going clockwise, there are former players like New York’s Tony Richardson, Chicago’s Todd Collins and Pittsburgh’s Keyaron Fox, along with former Chiefs assistant coach, Green Bay’s head coach Mike McCarthy.

…Read More!

Saunders Headed To Raiders

Long-time Chiefs assistant coach Al Saunders has danced many times with the silver and black legend known as Oakland Al.

Apparently they have finally gotten together as ESPN reported Thursday evening that Saunders has been hired to be the offensive coordinator of the Raiders under the team’s new head coach Hue Jackson.

At least twice before in his time coaching with the Chiefs, Saunders interviewed with Al Davis for Oakland’s head coaching position. Once, he apparently was the choice and intended to take the job, but then found out Davis was already hiring a coaching staff for him.

For the last two seasons, Saunders has worked on the Ravens coaching staff in Baltimore where he had the titles of offensive consultant (2009) and senior offensive assistant (2010). It was during that 2009 season that he worked with Jackson, who was then the Ravens quarterbacks coach.

Jackson joined the Raiders as offensive coordinator last off-season and was in place after Davis flushed Tom Cable two days after the end of the season despite the team’s 8-8 finish, its best record in eight years.

Saunders had two tours of duty with the Chiefs. The first was from 1989 through 1998 he was the team’s wide receivers coach under Marty Schottenheimer. He returned in 2001 as offensive coordinator on Dick Vermeil’s staff and spent five seasons with the club. Vermeil pushed to have Saunders named his replacement once he stepped down after the 2005 season. But the Chiefs selected defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham instead.

Best Of AFC West … Thursday Cup O’Chiefs

It was a division that had just one team in the playoffs and just half of the group finished the season with more victories than defeats.

The teams of the AFC West were not overflowing with players having their best seasons in 2010. There were 10 players from the Chiefs, Chargers, Raiders and Broncos named to the Pro Bowl. Only the NFC West had fewer among the other seven divisions in the league.

While they may not have finished among the better performers in the ’10 season, there were plenty of good seasons put together by players in the AFC West. So, that’s why we’ve put together an All-AFC West team for the 2010 team.

About the selections, there are 12 defenders selected because of the use of the 3-4 and 4-3 defenses within the division. The offensive linemen were picked for the positions they play, rather than just the top five blockers.

At several positions there are honorable mention picks. These are players that just as easily could be on the All-AFC West first team.

Also at the end of the team rosters are selections for individual honors for players, coaches and executives.

Enjoy. …Read More!

Brady Surgery Sends Cassel To Pro Bowl

The Boston Globe reported Wednesday evening that New England Patriots QB Tom Brady will undergo surgery on his right foot Thursday afternoon or Monday morning.

That means he will be unable to play in the Pro Bowl on Sunday, January 30 in Honolulu. That should send Chiefs QB Matt Cassel as his replacement. Practices will start Monday in Hawaii.

Brady has dealt with a foot problem for several years, but the injury worsened during the ’10 season, although he did not miss a game. He’s expected to have surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital. If the repaired bone in his foot heals as expected, Brady should be ready for the start of training camp.

Obviously, he will not be ready for the NFL’s all-star game; his selection for the Pro Bowl was the sixth of his career. Now, his one-time backup Cassel will step in for him once again. The last time that happened was in the 2008 regular season opener for the Patriots when Brady suffered a season ending knee injury against the Chiefs and Cassel became the starting QB the rest of the season.

Cassel will join QBs Peyton Manning and Philip Rivers who to this point have not indicated any reasons they won’t be able to play.

NFL Announces 2011 Draft Underclassmen

The deadline was last Saturday and Wednesday morning the NFL released the names of the 56 college players who have declared for the 2011 Draft.

All the big names are there, including QB Cam Newton and DT Nick Fairley from the national championship Auburn Tigers. Three players are coming out early from the Big 12 Conference with Missouri QB Blaine Gabbert topping the list. Joining him is Mizzou DE Aldon Smith and Texas DB Aaron Williams.

That total of 56 underclassmen is the highest in NFL Draft history. Last year and in 2008 there were 53 players.

There are three names that have previously announced that they were turning pro that do not show up on the league’s list: Eastern Washington RB Taiwan Jones, Cincinnati WR Vidal Hazelton and Mississippi DL Jerrell Powe. All three may have qualified for the draft pool without having to file as underclassmen.

Here are the names provided by the NFL: …Read More!

Not So Special Teams … Wednesday Cup O’Chiefs

When Dexter McCluster returned a punt 94 yards for a touchdown in the season opener against San Diego it seemed a harbinger of a good things for the Chiefs special teams.

But that promise did not show itself for the final 16 games and it would have to go down as a mediocre season for the Chiefs kicking game. For a team that overachieved on both offense and defense, they underachieved on special teams.

“That’s an area that we have to compete in at a high level and be better in against most teams that we play for us to stand a competitive chance,” was pretty much a weekly comment form head coach Todd Haley

After McCluster’s opening night TD, the return game was not much of a factor. K Ryan Succop did not show major improvement from his solid rookie season. The Chiefs did not block a field goal or punt and they allowed a 94-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.

On the positive side, the overall coverage units were among the league’s best and punter Dustin Colquitt had a solid season.

Here’s an inside look at all aspects of the kicking game and how it played out for the Chiefs in the ’10 season and what needs to improve in the ’11 season for the Chiefs to improve. …Read More!


In what was a voting landslide, TE Tony Moeaki’s sterling one-handed catch against the San Francisco 49ers in Game No. 3 is the play of the 2010 Chiefs season.

Just under half of the people who took part in our vote for play of the year went with the score that came in the third quarter of the September 26 meeting at Arrowhead Stadium. QB Matt Cassel and Moeaki combined on an 18-yard touchdown where the rookie tight end made a remarkable one-handed catch after leaving his feet and beating the coverage of San Francisco LB Navorro Bowman.

No other play in the Chiefs 10-7 season came close to the Moeaki touchdown in the voting. The No. 2 play was the Dexter McCluster 94-yard punt return for a touchdown against the Chargers in the regular-season opener.

The bronze medal for play No. 3 was the 75-yard touchdown play against Tennessee, where Cassel handed the ball off to RB Thomas Jones, who then lateraled back to Cassel, who then found Bowe open. It’s the longest TD play of Bowe’s NFL

There were plenty of plays mentioned over the 17 games – it was that type of year for the Chiefs. As poster Mike wrote: “Jamaal Charles’ long run in the San Diego game; a preview of things to come. But, way too many plays stick out. All of Hali’s sacks. All of Bowe’s touchdowns. Cassel’s game against Seattle. Cassel’s game against St. Louis. The more you think about it, the list could go on and on.”

Here are the plays that got the most votes and some of the comments that came from those that posted their vote: …Read More!


Chuck says: Bob, I love your service and I also love the Chiefs and have for over 40 years. With that said, what do you think they will do with the “OC” job that Charlie Weis gave up? I truly feel that Haley cannot handle both the HC and OC jobs at the same time. I feel it would actually hurt the team more than help it. There’s only so many hours in the day. I hope we don’t “regress” this next year as that happens to so many teams after a good season.

Marty says: Thanks for the site. I have enjoyed it all season, and will definitely re-up for next season. It is, by far, the best place to look for actual “news” about the Chiefs, as opposed to blatant speculation and guessing. Any chance the reason for the silence re the offensive coordinator position is because the target(s) are to be found on the staff(s) of teams remaining in the playoffs? While I think a lateral move of an offensive coordinator would be unlikely (and essentially impossible if that person is contracted for next season already), it seems to me if one looks at those remaining staffs there are some potential candidates to be found among QB coaches, offensive line coaches, etc. My cursory look shows that Matt Cavanaugh, Tom Clements, and Bill Callahan might be among those with OC experience the Chiefs might look at. Any insight? I am among those who believe the Chiefs would be better off with a full time OC and a full time head coach, not a combined position. If they had a more fully developed quarterback, that might be different … I for one, was very impressed by the growth of both Matt Cassel and Todd Haley this season. I think that was in no small part due to Cassel getting the full attention of the OC, and Haley being able to be the head coach full time.

Bob says: The relative silence on the offensive coordinator’s position is really pretty remarkable at this point in time. Coaches are changing teams and being hired for coordinators’ positions on a regular basis. The Rams named Josh McDaniels as their OC on Tuesday, while the Seahawks fired their OC in Jeremy Bates on Monday. Denver kept OC Mike McCoy, while Carolina, Cleveland and Miami have filled their spots. Right now it seems like Minnesota and Seattle are still looking for coordinators, along with the Chiefs.

The No. 1 question right now has to be not who the next coordinator will be, but whether the position exists on Haley’s staff in the 2011 season. Last week when he last spoke publicly, Haley would not commit to hiring a coordinator. That spoke volumes about the situation. I’m going to bet that while he’s talked to a few contenders outside the Chiefs offices, Haley’s time is being spent trying to set up an arrangement with those already in house. I think Haley wants to call the plays. The question comes down to doing the heavy lifting of pulling together the game plan each week. Haley understands that doing this type of work is going to take time away from the other duties of the head coach. He’s smart enough to know that’s not going to work. But there are head coaches who call their own offensive plays – Sean Payton in New Orleans, Gary Kubiak in Houston, and Mike McCarthy in Green Bay for instance – so his jumping into that role would not be unusual. …Read More!

Developmental Stars For ’11 … Tuesday Cup O’Chiefs

Todd Haley hammered away at the theme all through the 2010 season. One of the biggest keys in the Chiefs improvement from the previous season was the development of players who were already on site. He frequently referenced players in their third, fourth and fifth seasons.

Ultimately, three players really took a step forward – RB Jamaal Charles, ILB Derrick Johnson and CB Brandon Carr.

Charles and Carr were in the third seasons, while Johnson was in his sixth season. D.J. may have been out of the group that Haley was speaking about, but he qualified because after five previous seasons, Johnson made huge strides in production and consistency.

It’s never too early to look ahead to the 2011 season. Just who might be the players already wearing red and gold that may make similar types of improvement as Charles-Carr-Johnson?

We’ve picked three and those choices are based on several different reasons, including what they’ve shown so far and where the team really needs to improve in the 2011 season. They are OLB Andy Studebaker (in his fourth season), WR Verran Tucker (a second-year player) and DE Tyson Jackson (going into his third season.)

Here’s a look at those three and why they have a chance to become major contributors in 2011. …Read More!

East-West Shrine Game On Saturday

The post-season all-star season for college seniors begins this week with the East-West Shrine Game in Orlando Florida. Next week comes the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama.

The East-West game is set for this Saturday at 3 p.m. CST, and will be broadcast by the NFL Network. Coaching the squads will be former NFL head coaches Dan Reeves and Wade Phillips.

There are no major college prospects from Missouri-Kansas-Kansas State in the East-West Game, but there’s a pair of small colleges performers in Missouri State OL David Arkin and Fort Hays State WR O.J. Murdock (left).

Arkin came out of Wichita’s Kapaun Mt. Carmel High School and after a redshirt season in ’06, he started 30 games at right guard in ’07-’09, before moving to left tackle in the final two games of the ’09 season and stating 14 games. The 6-5, 302-pounder was named the Missouri State Co-Player of the Year and the program’s co-offensive player of the year. Arkin was named to the first-team All-Missouri Valley Conference, and the AFCA Coaches All-America team and the Walter Camp Foundation All-America team. He’s also won repeated All-Academic honors during his career in Springfield.

The 5-10 ½, 195 pounds Murdock started his college career at South Carolina. The Florida native started with a redshirt season in ’05, played four games in ’06 for the Gamecocks before being suspended for shoplifting. He spent the ’07 season at Pear River Community College in Mississippi, but played only two games because of a broken collarbone. He signed to play at Marshall in ’08 but washed out of there because of problems with his credit hours and did not play anywhere that season. He ended up at Fort Hays in ’09. In two seasons, Murdock played 21 games at Fort Hays, catching 95 passes for 1,987 yards and 20 touchdowns.

Here’s a breakdown of the rosters that have been put together for the game and comments on each group.



West Team for 2011 Shrine Game


Quarterback – Nathan Enderle, Idaho; Jerrod Johnson, Texas A&M; Scott Tolzien, Wisconsin. Enderle is viewed as a prospect in Round 7 or as a free agent. He’s got the size (6-4, 234) and was a 4-year starter for the Vandals, appearing in 46 games, throwing for 74 TDs, 60 INTs and 10,084 yards. He’s out of North Platte, Nebraska. Johnson is also viewed as a late-round prospect and will carry a medical grade from NFL teams after he was removed as the A&M starter because of concerns about his throwing shoulder; he had surgery in the off-season. He finished with 8,888 yards in total offense. Tolzien was 2010 Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award winner. He led national with a 74.3 completion percentage in ’10. The Badgers were 21-5 in his starts over two seasons.

Running back – (FB) Patrick DiMarco, South Carolina; Alex Green, Hawaii; Da’rel Scott, Maryland; Vai Taua, Nevada. DiMarco was a co-captain for the Gamecocks, where he played both FB and TE. He’s viewed as a free agent. Green is rated as a free agent prospect, possibly fullback at 235 pounds. He ran for 1,000 yards in ’10, tough to do in the run-and-shoot offense at Hawaii. Scott is a prospect for Rounds 5-7 who was MVP of the Military Bowl with TD runs of 61 and 91 yards. Taua found the end zone with 22 TDs in the ’10 season and earned third-team AP All-America status. He’s viewed as a free agent prospect.

Wide receiver – Armon Binns, Cincinnati; Jeffrey Maehl, Oregon; O.J. Murdock, Ft. Hays State; Anthony Parker, Calgary; Aldrick Robinson, SMU; Ryan Whalen, Stanford. Binns is a Round 6-7 prospect caught 75 passes for 1,101 yards and 10 TDs in the ’10 season. He’s a big target at 6-3, 205 pounds. Maehl began as a safety for the Ducks, but has been catching passes for three seasons with 169 for 2,178 yards and 24 TDs. He’s a Round 7 prospect. Murdock (see above). Parker has been rated as the best prospect in Canadian college football by the CFL. He’s 6-2, 215 pounds and was all-conference two years in a row. He had 376 receiving yards and six touchdowns in the Canadian college playoffs where his University of Calgary Dinos reached the title game. Robinson is viewed as a Round 5-7 prospect. He’s got speed but is small at 5-9½, 178 pounds, with 176 catches for the Mustangs for 3,238 yards and 29 TDs. Whalen is a Round 6-7 prospect finishing with 138 career receptions at Stanford. His ’10 season was hurt by a dislocated elbow that cost him three games. He was also named a co-captain.

Tight end – Jordan Cameron, Southern Cal; Virgil Green, Nevada; Julius Thomas, Portland State. Cameron is seen as a Round 6-7 prospect that transferred to USC from Brigham Young. He caught 16 passes in ’10 for 126 yards and 1 TD. Green was selected first-team All-WAC for the ’10 season, catching 31 passes for 453 yards and five TDs. He’s another Round 6-7 prospect. Thomas is 6-5, 228 pounds prospect who played basketball for four years and turned to football in ’10. He caught 29 passes for 453 yards and two TDs.

Center – Alex Linnenkohl, Oregon State; William Rackley, Lehigh. Linnenkohl is considered a prospect for Rounds 6-7 after spending three seasons as the starting center for the Beavers. Rackley was a four-year starter at Lehigh, but did so at tackle. He’ll move inside in the NFL, either to guard or center, so this game is a big one for him to show what he can do.

Guard – Andrew Jackson, Fresno State; Caleb Schlauderaff, Utah; Zachary Williams, Washington State. Jackson is a big man at 6-5, 295 pounds, who missed most of the ’10 season because of a high ankle sprain. He’s a Round 7 prospect. Schlauderaff started games over four seasons at left guard, where he earned several All-Mountain West Conference honors and is considered a Round 7 or free agent prospect. Williams spent the ’10 season starting at center, after working the two previous seasons at left guard.

Tackle – Joseph Barksdale, LSU; Adam Grant, Arizona; Laupepa Letuli, Hawaii; Matthew O’Donnell, Queens Ontario. Barksdale is 6-5, 338 pounds and considered a Round 6-7 prospect. He started two years at RT, but moved to LT for the ’10 season. He lost some time due to ankle injuries. Grant has missed a lot of playing time because of multiple injuries to his knees, hands. The last two years he received All-Pac 10 honors playing both right and left tackle. He’s seen as a Round 7 pick, if healthy. Letuli missed two games during the ’10 season because of a knee injury, but he was able to earn second-team All-WAC honors. A native of Samoa, he’ll be a 24-year old rookie if he makes the NFL; he’s considered a possible free agent. O’Donnell is listed at Queen’s College in Canada at 6-10, 340 pounds. He was a dominating player on that level and was part of his team’s national championship victory in the ’09 season.

Defensive end – Ricky Elmore, Arizona; Karl Klug, Iowa; Cheta Ozougwu, Rice; Ryan Winterswke, Boise State. Elmore is projected as a Round 5 choice after putting up 21.5 sacks over the last two seasons, including leading the PAC-10 in the ’10 season with 11 sacks. Klug played DT for the Hawkeyes in their base defense, missing just one game in the last three years. He’s a Round 7 prospect with 135 total tackles, 10.5 sacks and 4 forced fumbles. Ozougwu is a Round 7 or free agent prospect, due to his size (6-1¾, 255 pounds). But he was productive at Rice, with 54 tackles, 3 sacks, 3 forced fumbles in the ’10 season. Winterswke earned first-team All-WAC honors for three straight years, playing in 52 games for BSU with 20.5 sacks, 166 total tackles and 44.5 tackles for loss. He’s projected as a Round 6-7 pick.

Defensive tackle – Brandon Bair, Oregon; David Carter, UCLA; Ted Laurent, Mississippi; Ian Williams, Notre Dame. For the Ducks, Bair was a defensive tackle, but his body type will move him to end in the NFL. He’s a Round 7 prospect, but will enter the NFL at the age of 26. In 51 games he had 104 tackles, 25 tackles for loss and 5 sacks. Carter has the physical tools at 6-4, 300 pounds to play inside in the 4-3, or at defensive end in the 3-4. In 40 games, he had 66 total tackles, 6.5 sacks and 5 passes defended. He’s considered a free agent signee. Laurent is small but agile and viewed as a Round 7-free agent prospect. In 45 games for the Rebels, he had 57 total tackles, 3.5 sacks and 2 forced fumbles. Williams suffered a sprained MCL in his left knee and missed the last month of the season for the Irish. He played in 45 games, with 160 total tackles and two interceptions. If healthy, he’s considered a Round 4-5 prospect.

Inside linebacker – Nicholas Bellore, Central Michigan; Ben Jacobs, Fresno State; Orie Lemon, Oklahoma State; Michael Mohamed, California. Bellore is considered a Round 7 prospect after a strong college career where he was a co-captain for three consecutive seasons at Central Michigan. He missed only one game in his college career and in 52 games had 472 total tackles, 32.5 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks, 5 interceptions and 5 forced fumbles. Jacobs is big for an inside backer at 6-4 and was twice All-Big West first-team defense. In 52 games, he had 387 total tackles, 23.5 tackles for loss, 1 INT, 2 fumbles recovers both returned for TDs. He’s a free agent type. Lemon is seen as a Round 7 prospect after missing the entire ’09 season due to a knee injury. He was a first-team All-Big 12 selection in ’10. Mohamed is viewed as a Round 6 pick, coming off a good ’10 season with 95 total tackles, 5 sacks, 2 fumbles recovered and 1 INT.

Outside linebacker – Chris Carter, Fresno State; Dontay Moch, Nevada; Winston Venable, Boise State. Carter was named the WAC Defensive Player of the Year in ’10 for his 55 total tackles, 16.5 tackles for loss, 11 sacks and 4 forced fumbles. He’s seen as a Round 3-4 prospect by the NFL. Moch is 6-1, 242 and has been timed at 4.4 in the 40-yard dash. That speed makes him a Round 2-3 prospect. A productive player over 53 games, he had 186 total tackles 63 tackles for loss, 30 sacks and 9 forced fumbles. Venable is a free agent prospect, who might be a better safety in the NFL since he’s 5-10¾. Over the last two seasons, he had 114 total tackles, 16 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, 2 INTs including one returned for a TD.

Cornerback – Cortez Allen, Citadel; Korey Lindsey, Southern Illinois; Brandyn Thompson, Boise State; Darrin Walls, Notre Dame. Allen is 6-1½, 197 pounds and turns the 40 in less than 4.5 seconds. He was a three-year starter for the Bulldogs, playing in 41 games, with 5 INTs including 2 for TDs, with 121 total tackles and 15 passes defended. He’s a Round 6-7 prospect. Lindsey earned All-America honors in three straight seasons, while starting 36 straight games for the Salukis. He played in 50 games and finished with 14 interceptions, 162 total tackles, plus he returned 42 punts. He’s seen as a Round 4-5 prospect. Thompson is a free-agent prospect after a 47-game career with the Broncos. He had 13 INTs, including one he returned for a TD. He also had 145 total tackles. Walls is a prospect in Round 7 after playing and starting on both corners for the Irish. In 44 games, he had 5 INTs, with 2 returned for scores, plus 102 total tackles, 20 passes defensed and two forced fumbles.

Safety – (SS) Jeron Johnson, Boise State; (SS) Shiloh Keo, Idaho; (FS) Andrew Rich, BYU; (FS) Justin Taplin-Ross, Utah; (SS) Nate Williams, Washington. Johnson is seen as a Round 3-4 prospect after a strong career at Boise where he was the leading tackler for three straight seasons. In 48 games, Johnson had 318 total tackles along with 8 INTs. Keo is a prospect for Round 4-5 after winning all sorts of honors during his time with the Vandals. He played in 53 total games, with 358 total tackles, 11 INTs, an 11-yard average on 53 punt returns. Rich was a junior college player who walked on at BYU. He finished his career strong with two INTs in the New Mexico Bowl and five in his last four games. In 39 games for the Cougars he had 10 INTs and 222 total tackles and 6 forced fumbles. Taplin-Ross carries a free-agent grade going into the evaluation process. In 47 games with the Utes, he had two interceptions and 92 total tackles. Williams is a Round 6 prospect coming off a ’10 season when he had 62 tackles for the Huskies.

Kicker – Dan Bailey, Oklahoma State. Bailey had a big senior season for the Cowboys, hitting 24 of 28 FGs and leading the Big 12 in scoring with 137 points. That was good enough to earn him second-team AP All-America.

Punter – Trevor Hankins, Arizona State. Hankins will get a chance to punt in some teams training camp this summer. He missed a game this fall because of a suspension related to a DUI charge, but averaged 44.6 yards a punt. Over his career, he kicked 130 times for a 43.9-yard average.

East Team For 2011 Shrine Game


Quarterback – Patrick Devlin, Delaware; Ricky Dobbs, Navy; Tyrod Taylor, Virginia Tech. Devlin is viewed as a Round 3-5 prospect. Led Blue Hens to FCS title game loss, threw for 2,812 yards, 22 TDs and 2 INTs in the ’10 season. Taylor is pegged as a Round 5-6 prospect that may see time at another position because of his running ability. He was 23-5 as the starting quarterback for Tech. Dobbs

Running back – Delone Carter, Syracuse; Graig Cooper, Miami; Evan Royster, Penn State; (FB) Anthony Sherman, Connecticut. Carter is 5-9, 215 pounds, but ran as a power back. He ran for 198 yards and two TDs against Kansas State in the Pinstripe Bowl and is considered a prospect for Rounds 3-4. Cooper is viewed as a free agent-type, as his senior season was limited by knee and ankle injuries. Royster finished his career as Penn State’s all-time rusher and the first back to have three straight 1,000-yard seasons. He’s seen as a prospect in Rounds 5-7. Sherman was a three-year starter at FB, and he was also a special teams standout. Rated a prospect for Round 7 or a free agent.

Wide receiver – Perry Baker, Fairmont State; Lester Jean, Florida Atlantic; Cecil Shorts, Mt. Union; Terrence Toliver, LSU; Terrence Turner, Indiana. Baker has sub-4.4 speed in the 40 and finished his college career with 90 catches for 1,552 yards and 19 touchdowns. He’s seen as a free agent signee. Jean is a tall target at 6-3, 195 pounds with sub-4.5 speed. He caught 64 passes for 988 yards for the Owls in the ’10 season. He’s viewed as a prospect for Rounds 6-7. Shorts comes out of Division III powerhouse Mt. Union and has turned in 40 times sub-4.4 seconds. He’s viewed as a prospect for rounds 4-6. In ’10, he missed three games with an injury, but he caught 63 passes for 1,106 yards and 17 TDs. He also had punt and kickoff return TDs. Toliver is a Round 4-5 prospect and a big target at 6-4, 205 pounds. He caught 3 TD passes against Texas A&M in the Cotton Bowl. Turner is a free agent prospect with 143 catches for 1,436 yards and 4 TDs for the Hoosiers.

Tight end – Kyle Adams, Purdue; Charles Gantt, Michigan State; Greg Smith, Texas. Adams appeared in 46 games for the Boilermakers, catching 79 passes for 660 yards and three TDs. He’s seen as a prospect for Rounds 4-5. Gantt has a big body at 6-4, 260 pounds. Gantt is a big target who caught 22 passes for 261 yards and three TDs. His physical skills make him an interesting prospect with a grade for Rounds 4-5. Smith is a free agent prospect who played some center as well as TE.

Center – Ryan Bartholomew, Syracuse; J.C. Brignone, Mississippi State; Beau Warren, Virginia Tech. Bartholomew was a co-captain on the ’10 Orange squad, after starting games over the last three seasons at center and guard. He’s a prospect for Round 6-7. Brignone started for three years at MSU and also played some guard along the way. He was considered one of the team leaders and is viewed as a free agent signee.

Guard – David Arkin, Missouri State; Bryant Browning, Ohio State; Randall Hunt, Illinois; Zachary Hurd, Connecticut. Arkin (see above). Browning spent time starting at right guard and right tackle for the Buckeyes over the last three seasons. He’s viewed as a prospect for Round 6-7. Hunt is a free agent prospect who started two seasons for the Illini. Hurd is viewed as a Round 4-5 choice after he started all 39 games over the last three years for UConn, where he started at both left and right guard.

Tackle – Christian Hairston, Clemson; Jah Reid, Central Florida; Mike Smith, Nebraska. Hairston is a big man at 6-6½, 325 pounds, but still can run the 40 in 5.1 seconds. He’s seen as a Round 4-5 prospect that only missed time because of a few little injuries along the way. Reid started three seasons at right tackle for UCF and is considered a free agent prospect. Smith missed the entire ’10 season because of a broken leg suffered in pre-season practices. In the ’09 season, Smith started 14 games at left tackle and has also played at center and guard.

Defense end – Pierre Allen, Nebraska; Bruce Miller, Central Florida; Justin Trattou, Florida. Allen is considered a prospect for Round 3-4, after a strong senior season with 57 total tackles, 10 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks and 13 quarterback hurries. He’s been a starter for three years with the Cornhuskers. Miller twice won the Conference USA Defensive Player of the Year honors. He finished his career with 34 sacks, plus three interceptions, two that he returned for TDs. The pros consider him a Round 7 prospect. Trattou is considered a free agent signee. In four seasons with the Gators, he missed only two games, playing in 51 contests, racking up 121 total tackles, 25 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks and three interceptions.

Defensive tackle – Marvin Austin, North Carolina; Terrell McClain, South Florida; Olong Ogbu, Penn State; Martin Parker, Richmond. Austin was considered a potential first-round choice a year ago, but he was suspended for the ’10 season because of his dealings with an agent. Now, he’ll need a strong January-February to get back to Round 2 or 3. McClain was first-team All-Big East in ’10 as he claimed 23 tackles, 3 sacks and 6 QB pressures. He’s seen as a Round 6-7 prospect. Ogbu comes out of PSU as a Round 5-6 candidate and may be best as a DE in the 3-4. He plays hard, with a great motor like Tamba Hali. In 51 games, he had 111 total tackles, 29 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks and 4 forced fumbles. Parker got things done on the FCS level and was a finalist for the Buck Buchanan Award as defensive player of the year. In the last two seasons, Parker had 162 total tackles, 29 tackles for loss and 12 sacks and is considered a Round 7 prospect.

Inside linebacker – Akem Dent, Georgia; Scott Lutrus, Connecticut; Gregory Lloyd II, Connecticut. Dent was one of the most active defensive players in the SEC in ’10, finishing the season with 122 total tackles. In 46 games for the Bulldogs, Dent had 236 total tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks and 2 forced fumbles. He’s a free agent prospect. Lutrus has been a team co-captain for the last two years, seasons that were hindered by several injuries, including a neck problem. For the Huskies he played outside LB for the most part. Lloyd struggled through the ’10 season, losing his starting job because he had not fully recovered from an ACL tear in his knee at the end of the ’09 season. Lloyd is the son of former NFL LB Greg Lloyd, but although he wears his father’s No. 95, they do not have a relationship. Both UConn LBs are considered free agent signees.

Outside linebacker – Douglas Hogue, Syracuse; Josh McNary, Army; Brian Rolle, Ohio State. Hogue is seen as a Round 5-6 prospect by NFL scouts. He began his career with the Orangemen as a running back. He was first-team All-Big East Conference in ’10, with 89 total tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss, 3 sacks and 2 INTs.McNary is 5-11½, 235 pounds and could be a safety if and when he gets a chance to continue his career after his Army commitment. Began his career as a walk-on, but finished with 177 total tackles, 46.5 tackles for loss, 26.5 sacks, 5 forced fumbles and 6 quarterback hurries. Rolle is a Round 6 prospect and may best be suited for strong safety because he’s just 5-9¾, 218 pounds. But he’s a hitter and he was productive as a middle linebacker for the Buckeyes. In 50 career games, he had 196 total tackles, 17.5 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks and 4 INTs.

Cornerback – Mario Butler, Georgia Tech; Justin Rogers, Richmond; Josh Thomas, Buffalo; Demarcus Van Dyke, Miami. Butler’s a Round 5 prospect after being a three starter for Tech. The Flordia native played in 51 games, with four interceptions, including one he returned this year for 85 yards and a TD. He also had 136 total tackles. Rogers has a grade for Rounds 5-6 and he was an all-conference selection for the Spiders in each of the last four years. In ’10 he was first-team corner and punt returner. He had 48 tackles, 2 INTS and 2 forced fumbles. He also led the conference in punt average at 12.4 yards. Thomas carries a Round 7-grade after his 47 games. He had two INTS and 205 total tackles, with 27 passes defended and 5 forced fumbles. Van Dyke is a Round 7 prospect who was in and out of the starting lineup in the ’10 season. Overall 49 games at Miami, he had three interceptions and 78 total tackles.

Safety – (SS) Eric Gordon, Michigan State; (FS) Jermale Hines, Ohio State; (FS) Brian Lainhart, Kent State; (FS) Jonathan Nelson, Oklahoma; (SS) David Sims, Iowa State. Gordon played OLB for the Spartans, who will move to strong safety if he can make it in the pros; he’s considered a free-agent prospect. He started 49 consecutive games, a school record. Hines is a Round 5 prospect from the Buckeyes and out of Cleveland. He played in 43 games, with 1 INT, 152 total tackles, plus 1.5 sacks. Hines did not miss a game over his last two seasons. Lainhart finished a strong career at Kent with 88 tackles and 2 INTs in the ’10 season. He finished his career with 17 INTs. Lainhart is considered a free-agent prospect. So is Nelson, who played in 32 games for the Sooners and finished with 5 INTs and 151 total tackles. He’s a talented athlete with 40-inch vertical jump. Sims is a free agent prospect, who was the 2009 Big 12 Defensive Newcomer of the Year. In the ’10 season, he had 96 total tackles and forced three fumbles. Against Oklahoma, he finished with 17 tackles.

Kicker – Wes Byrum, Auburn. Over his career at Auburn, Byrum was a 75 percent kicker on FGs and he hit some pressure shots especially over the ’10 season. He finished up as the school’s all-time leading scorer as well.

Punter – Ryan Donahue, Iowa. Donahue is one of two punters who enter the pre-draft period considered a potential draft choice. In the ’10 season, he averaged 44.6 yards per punts, and was able to put 21 punts inside the opponents’ 20-yard line.

Learning From The Final Four … Monday Cup O’Chiefs

Now that the NFL is down to its final four teams for the 2010 season – the Steelers, Jets, Bears and Packers – it’s time to take the magnifying glass to the games of the last two Sundays and learn what they can tell us about how far away the Chiefs might be from being part of the championship game weekend.

The way Baltimore beat the Chiefs, and then went to Pittsburgh and lost what amounted to a heavyweight fight with the Steelers it’s obvious that Todd Haley’s team went about as far as they were capable of going. They made the playoffs and won 10 games on the season, quite a change for a team that was 4-12 the season before.

But we all saw at Arrowhead Stadium in a 30-7 loss that the Chiefs were not of the same class as the Ravens, and based on results, certainly not the Steelers. They were much like the Atlanta Falcons over in the NFC – a young team, with a QB inexperienced in the post-season. The Falcons were unable to raise their level of play against the Packers and got smoked by 27 points. Atlanta played out of character, as he Falcons made all sorts of mistakes they did not do in the regular season, things like penalties, turnovers and mental mistakes.

One thing that the Chiefs can take from the 2010 playoffs so far is that they should not worry so much about playing home games in the post-season. They’ve lost their last four games in the playoffs at Arrowhead. This year, the visiting team has won five of the eight games played so far.

There are a few other lessons the Chiefs can take from the 2010 NFL playoffs: …Read More!

Underclassmen For NFL Draft-Final … 1/16

There’s a good chance that a handful of college players sailed under the media radar and applied for inclusion in the 2011 NFL Draft without any notice.

So the total class of underclassmen could increase. As of the deadline on Saturday evening, there were 54 known players who walked away from eligibility to put their names in to the draft pool. Any college player is eligible for the NFL Draft three years after his high school graduation. Thus, any player who graduated in 2008 can apply for the draft.

Right now, it appears that the top 10 players on most teams’ draft boards right now are underclassmen, topped in most cases by Auburn DT Nick Fairley who declared for the draft last week, along with teammate and Heisman Trophy winner QB Cam Newton.

Draft season in the NFL never really ends, but it picks up speed this week with the first of several all-star games. The East-West Shrine Game will go down this coming weekend, but practices start on Monday in Orlando. After that comes the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama and then the Texas vs. USA game in San Antonio.

Here are the underclassmen petitioning for the draft. Those players in bold are the most recent players to join the group since the last time we covered this group. …Read More!

Handling The West … Weekend Cup O’Chiefs

In Denver they have a new head coach. In San Diego they are trying to find a new defensive coordinator. In Oakland they are without a head coach and heaven knows how long it will take the powers that be in Raiders Land to complete the process.

And then there are the AFC West champion Chiefs, with a hole at offensive coordinator, but holding the division title for the first time since 2003, after breaking the Chargers stranglehold on the position.

That the Chiefs could win the division while losing four of six games against the Chargers, Raiders and Broncos is unusual. Since the league went to two conferences/four divisions in 2002, only two teams have won their division with a losing record attached to the intra-division games: the 2010 Chiefs and the 2002 Miami Dolphins team that was part of a three-way tie for the AFC East. Both teams went 2-4 in the regular season.

The Chiefs beat the Broncos by four points and the Chargers by seven points and went to overtime and lost to the Raiders by a FG. But in three other division games against those teams they lost by 20, 31 and 21 points. Those were the three worst losses in the regular season.

With only 20 percent of their 10 victories coming out of their own division, it creates an odd predicament for the Chiefs. They are division champs, but they are not the best team within the AFC West. That would be Oakland (6-0), followed by San Diego (3-3). Denver (1-5) finished behind the Chiefs.

“We showed you can get into the post-season without doing it,” Todd Haley said of winning in the division. “It’s not the way we’d like it to occur because you’re most efficient way to get into the post-season is to beat your division opponents. I think it’s very important from our players’ standpoint, we have to learn and understand how critical those games are to your placement, your seeding and really your overall chances of being a successful team in the post-season, which is the goal.

“We need to get better. We’re not there yet but we’ve done a real good job to this point of starting to lay the foundation of what’s going to be a real good team.” …Read More!

Kudos From The Coach … Thursday Cup O’Chiefs

More than likely it’s something he acquired from his time working for Bill Parcells. When it comes to verbal bouquets for his players, Chiefs head coach Todd Haley throws them around like manhole covers.

Its part of the mentality that believes pumping up a player does nothing but pump up his ego and that makes it that much harder to coach him because the player thinks he’s somehow “made it”. Uncomfortable is generally what NFL head coaches want the bulk of their players to feel on a 24/7 basis.

So it was an interesting moment the other day when Haley met with the media horde for a wrap-up chat on the loss to Baltimore and the 2010 season. His comments on the Chiefs season stayed on point through most of the session, as he talked in big picture views of how the team had improved from 4-12 to 10-6 and a division title.

But then Haley was asked if there were any specific player that made great progress and really stood out in the just completed season.

“There are just so many,” Haley said. “The coaches did such a great job of turning some unknowns to knowns. When you go into the draft and into the off-season you want to say ‘we would like to take care of this, this and this’ but you just can’t do it. That is why the development of players becomes so paramount to your success as a team.”

Normally, this is where Haley would head off in another direction, changing the subject without mentioning specific players. But this time, he named names. …Read More!

NFL Draft/Juniors Update 1/12

It’s a  busy time in the world of college football these days, even with the games over. Decisions are being made by players on whether they are going to go pro, or stay in the college ranks. They have until Saturday to file with the NFL.

In the last few days, Missouri’s DE/OLB Aldon Smith (right) made the jump as well. But a bunch of top shelf talents in the Big 12 Conference decided to stay in school, including WR Justin Blackmon and Nebraska DL Jared Crick.

Here are the players that have decided to return to school for the 2011 season in the last few days:

QB Brandon Weeden, Oklahoma State; WR Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State; WR Michael Floyd, Notre Dame; DL Jared Crick, Nebraska; RB Chris Polk, Washington; CB Shaun Prater, Iowa; WR Marvin McNutt Jr., Iowa.

Here are the players who have elected to head to the NFL rather than stay in school, and they are lined up by position. This week’s additions are in bold: …Read More!

Waiting For An O.C. … Wednesday Cup O’Chiefs

From the Truman Sports Complex

The news rolled through the Chiefs Nation like a bolt of lightning from a dark cloud in the summer sky:

Todd Haley might not hire anyone to replace Charlie Weis as the team’s offensive coordinator and Haley may take over the job.

Immediately, the head coach’s words were being parsed, scrubbed, sliced, diced and reconstructed by everyone with any interest in how the Chiefs and their fortunes will shake out in 2011.

Now, understand this from someone who was there and asked the question that opened the Kansas City football version of Pandora’s Box – Haley did not say he would not have an offensive coordinator next season.

Here’s the gist of what he said when asked if he was committed to hiring a new offensive coordinator:

“We are in that process of evaluating the team and I am going to continue to do the things that I can do as the head coach to stay on course and continue to build and make all those decisions together with staff and our organization that we think give us the best chance to continue to make progress.”

Translation: I’m not sure what I’m going to do right now. I need some time to ponder the possibilities.

Another question for Haley: Would he consider calling plays next year? …Read More!

Answer Bob: 1/11/11

Love the date for Tuesday. Hope I’m around for the next one 2/22/22. Maybe the Chiefs will have won a game in the playoffs by then. On to your posts.


Tenand6 says: Bob, did this game change your evaluation of Matt Cassel? It was interesting to see who stepped up today and those who have played better in lesser games against lesser opponents. Eric Berry had his share of big plays. Jamaal Charles is so much fun to watch. I need to see the game again to get a better sense of it all. The Chiefs need to be better up the middle, IMHO. QB, Center, NT, ILB. And, who can forget RT and WR?

Thanks for all the great game summaries and commentary. Lots to think about with personnel and coaching changes ahead. It was a really great year. Your web site made it that much better. Will be looking forward to your assessment of the team and what we need going forward.

Bob says: Thanks for your kind comments about the site and our coverage of the season. There’s plenty of time to come in the next few weeks and we’ll have plenty of thoughts on evaluations on the season. But as to some of your immediate questions, I don’t think we can ignore Cassel’s performance against Baltimore when we consider his future, or lack of same. I also don’t think it’s a time to overreact. These are the growing pains of a quarterback. The fact that he did not raise the level of his game is a concern that can’t be ignored. …Read More!

Haley Not Committed To An O.C.

From the Truman Sports Complex

Todd Haley had his end of season session with the media on Tuesday afternoon and the news concerned the Chiefs offensive coordinator position.

Haley said the following about this important position on his staff:

  • He will go through an evaluation process before deciding if he was going to hire/name a coordinator to take the place of Charlie Weis. He would not commit to naming an offensive coordinator for the 2011 season, nor would he commit to calling the offensive plays himself.
  • The decision on a new coordinator or no coordinator will be Haley’s.
  • He did not relieve Weis of his playing calling duties in the second half of the game against Baltimore in the playoffs.
  • It was a coincidence that the bottom dropped out of the team’s offense in the final two games, after the departure of Weis for the University of Florida was announced.

With the end of the 2010 season, the evaluation process began on Monday and Haley indicated it would include looking at all parts of the football operation. That would mean dissecting the offensive coordinator’s position and whether a new person must be hired, whether a coach already on staff should be promoted, or whether the play calling will fall to Haley like the 2009 season.

“What I want to make sure is I do what’s best for our team and gives us the best chance to succeed,” said Haley. “That will come through a very thorough evaluation. There is going to be a very thorough evaluation of the entire system. We had a real good coordinator here in Charlie who has moved on to Florida. Last year, we got it right; we were able to continue to make big progress.

“I just want to get it right.”

Might a new coordinator already be on his coaching staff?

“I will consider anything,” Haley said. “We have to make sure we continue to develop our coaches and have good coaches on our staff. That’s a critical part of being a successful team year in and year out.”

And might he take over the play calling duties, as he did in 2009 after he fired coordinator Chan Gailey?

“I would not discount anything right now,” Haley said.

As to who will make the call on the offensive coordinator, Haley left little doubt where responsibility falls.

“I’ll be responsible for hiring the right person, it will ultimately fall on me to hire the right guy,” said Haley. “As I do with everything I’m going to work like heck to get it right and the thing I’m grateful for is I have a great staff of coaches and I’ve got guys I can lean on and talk to that have been through some of these things. And I got Scott, and we are like minded in things we think are necessary to keep moving forward.

“But ultimately I’ll make the decision of who comes in here, if that’s what we do.”

KCSP-AM reported Monday morning that Haley had relieved Weis of the play calling duties in the second half of the Baltimore game.

“Absolutely not true,” Haley said.

Saying Goodbye … Tuesday Cup O’Chiefs

The number one requirement for an NFL locker room on the day after the season ends is garbage bags.

Garbage bags?

Yes, big, heavy duty garbage bags, that can be used as suitcases, brief cases, storage bags and sometimes, they can even hold garbage as players clean out their lockers after some eight months of use.

A box of big black garbage bags sat on a table in the middle of the Chiefs locker room Monday as the team went through the last day of the 2010 season. The use of those bags was a fitting metaphor to what happened on Sunday when the Baltimore Ravens stuffed into the garbage the Chiefs chances of advancing into the AFC playoffs.

As a result of the 30-7 thumping, the Chiefs gathered one more time on Monday. There were a lot of phone numbers exchanged, a lot of immediate plans being shared, some footballs being signed as they were passed around the room. …Read More!

Numbers – Playoffs Edition

The operative numbers obviously, are 30-7.

It’s easy to say the better team won the game, and perhaps that’s true. But the Chiefs were holding their own and trailing just 10-7 early in the third quarter when failure to convert a third-and-2 and a fourth-and-1 just across midfield was the last effective drive they mounted.

Thus the importance of being able to run the ball effective – and stop it effectively as Baltimore did on those two plays that turned the game around. The easy thing would be to give the rushing attack a good grade because of the number of successful runs. That would be misleading. At the most important juncture of the game, Thomas Jones gained just 1 yard on the third-and-2 play early in the third quarter. Jamaal Charles lost 4 yards on fourth-and-1.

The Chiefs did not run the ball again the rest of the game – though it’s not as severe an evaluation as it seems since they only had 11 plays in the last quarter-and-a-half of the game. In the first half the Chiefs ran effectively, perhaps disguised by the fact they had just nine real attempts. Charles had five runs of 8 or more yards in his seven carries – including the 41-yard touchdown dash. Jones, despite being held to less than 4 yards on each of his carries, gained a first down on his 2-yard run in the second quarter.

But not converting third or fourth down on the first drive of the second half showed how ineffective the Chiefs rushing attack is against a top-notch run defense.

The other operative number is turnovers. Matt Cassel was intercepted three times – the most of any game this season. That’s five interceptions in his final two games. The Chiefs fumbled twice and lost both of them. Meantime they only created two turnovers by the Ravens, leaving them at minus-3 for the game – another sure prescription for defeat. …Read More!

BCS Title Game – Auburn vs. Oregon

  • Bowl Championship Series National Championship Game
  • University of Phoenix Stadium/Glendale, Arizona
  • Monday/ 7:30 p.m. CST, on ESPN


Best prospect: #90 DT Nick Fairley, 6-4, 298 pounds, 4.92 pounds, Junior – The 2010 Lombardi Award winner and first-team AP All-America for a junior season where he had 55 tackles, 21 tackles for loss, 10.5 sacks, 21 quarterback hurries, one forced fumble, two fumble recoveries and an interception. He also knocked three QBs out of the game after hits. Began his college career at Copiah-Lincoln Community College in Mississippi where he had 63 tackles and seven sacks in the 2008 season. Over his 26 games played at Auburn, Fairley totaled 83 total tackles, 24.5 tackles for loss and 12 sacks. …Read More!

Mr. Charlie Leaves A Stinker

From Arrowhead Stadium

It maybe circumstance.

It might be coincidental.

But ever since it was announced that Charlie Weis was leaving to become offensive coordinator at the University of Florida, the Chiefs offense has gone to pieces.

Here are the ugly numbers for a loss to the Raiders in regular-season game No. 16 and the loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday in the first-round of the AFC playoffs:

  • Points – 17, or 8.5 per game.
  • First downs – 25, or 12.5 per game.
  • Yards – 362 yards, or 181 yards per game.
  • Net Passing Yards – 139 yards, or 69.5 yards per game.
  • Giveaways – 7, or 3.5 per game.
  • Sacks Allowed – 10, or 5 per game.

The bottom dropped out of all facets of the offense, but especially with QB Matt Cassel. In the last two games, he was 20 of 51 passing for 185 yards, 0 TDs, 5 INTs for a passer rating of 10.5.

So do the Chiefs still believe that Weis’ departure and how it broke has had nothing to do with the offensive implosion?

“That was last week’s story,” said LG Brian Waters. “We had other stories for this game. It has had no effect.”

QB Matt Cassel agreed.

“Nothing has changed on his part,” Cassel said. “He’s still in here. He’s working hard and he’s doing everything he can to put us in the best position to win. For us nothing has really changed.

“Going forward we are going to definitely miss him. But that’s football, that’s the NFL.”

Weis’ plans remain unknown, whether he will be with the team on Monday when the players are sent home or has already taken off and headed to The Swamp to begin working with new Gators head coach Will Muschamp.


From Arrowhead Stadium

The details:

  • Just less than 10 minutes to play in the third quarter.
  • 4th-and-1 at the Baltimore 33-yard line.
  • Chiefs trail 10-7 on the scoreboard.

The setup:

All season long fourth down has been in play for the Chiefs, sometimes in unusual situations that only head coach Todd Haley seemed to understand. In 16 games, they were 10 of 23 or 43.5 percent when going for it on fourth down. Only Jacksonville at 25 and Buffalo at 24 attempts tried for the first down more often than the Chiefs.

The Ravens defense had faced 12 fourth down plays during the season and opponents had converted on six of those.

The options:

A field goal would have been from 51 yards into the wind on the field. In pre-game warm-ups, Ryan Succop had hit from 46 yards but did not try one from further that that. If Succop missed, Baltimore would take over at the 41-yard line.

A punt would have at the worst given Baltimore field position at the 20-yard line if it was a touchback. At best, the Chiefs might have been able to down the ball inside the 10-yard line.

Going for the first down would continue the drive if successful, or turn the ball over around the 33-yard line.

The actors:

The Chiefs came out in a 2-2-1 offensive set, with Jamaal Charles and Tim Castille in the backfield, lined up in the I-formation. TEs Leonard Pope and Tony Moeaki were in for blocking and at WR was Terrance Copper.

The call:

With the backs in an information and Moeaki tight left, Pope tight right, QB Matt Cassel took the snap and pitched to Charles going to his right.

The end result:

Ravens NT Kelly Gregg blew up the play with penetration that C Casey Wiegmann could not stop. Gregg got a hand on Charles, who kept going wide right and eventually reinforcement came in the form of SS Dawan Landry and others. Charles was tackled for a four-yard loss. Gregg’s penetration destroyed the play.

The reaction:

Chiefs coach Todd Haley: “I thought we were in the game in the third quarter, in their end with a fourth down. I was a little worried about the field goal there, so we went for it. It was not a well executed, conceived play, probably what started to turn the game in the situation we end up in.”

Chiefs LG Brian Waters: “If you watch the play they did some unorthodox things on that play defensively that you wouldn’t have expected. We just didn’t get it blocked to give Jamaal a chance.”

Ravens coach Jim Harbaugh: “That was big. They had a chance to score. I’d have gone for it. I thought he did the right thing and our guys just played the play tremendously well. The play to a speed back like that is tough to defend and our guys were all over it.”

Notes: Ravens Get Rematch With Steelers

From Arrowhead Stadium

Over the last few seasons, it’s become one of the best rivalries in the NFL – Pittsburgh and Baltimore out of the AFC North.

They will face off again late Saturday afternoon in the first game of the divisional round in the playoffs.

“It seems like poetic justice – Pittsburgh in the playoffs at their place,” said Ravens head coach John Harbaugh. “One of these days we’ll be good enough to earn the right to play them at our place.

“It will be a 60-minute game and I’m sure they’ll bring their A game and we’ll try to bring our A game. We’ll see what happens.”

The match-up will be the eighth game between these teams in the last three seasons. In the first seven, the Steelers own a 5-2 edge, but over the last two years they have split 2-2. Five of those games were decided by a field goal, with two in overtime.

“They (Pittsburgh) were game-planning for us, probably in the third quarter,” said Ravens WR Derrick Mason. “It might come down to the last drive, as it always does.” …Read More!

Is It Really A McCoy?

ESPN reported Sunday evening that the Chiefs are “strongly considering” hiring Denver Broncos quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator Mike McCoy to replace Charlie Weis as the offensive coordinator.

McCoy was part of the Josh McDaniels coaching staff for the last two seasons, and took over the play calling at the end of Denver’s season after McDaniels was fired.

He’s 38 years old and has been coaching since the 2000 season, after ending his playing career as quarterback. McCoy attended both Long Beach State and Utah, then spent five seasons bouncing around pro football with training camp stints with Green Bay, San Francisco and Philadelphia, a season playing in NFL Europe and one season in the Canadian Football League.

His move to coaching came with the Carolina Panthers in 2000 as an offensive assistant. He then moved up the ranks to wide receivers coach, quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator over the nine seasons he was with the Panthers.

REPORT CARD: Chiefs vs. Ravens

From Arrowhead Stadium

RUSHING OFFENSE: D – At half-time, RB Jamaal Charles had run seven times for 87 yards, including a 41-yard TD scamper. By the end of the game, he had nine carries for 82 yards. So that’s two carries for minus-5 yards in the second half. At the start of the game, there weren’t enough plays for the run game to get moving. In the second half, the Ravens pushed the lead forcing the K.C. offense to look at the pass rather than the run. They had 12 yards on seven carries in the third and fourth quarters. RB Thomas Jones was not a factor nor was WR/RB Dexter McCluster.

PASSING OFFENSE: F – QB Matt Cassel had a terrible afternoon, one of his worst performances in two years as the team’s starting quarterback. Cassel was able to complete only half of his passes and none went for more than 22 yards and only two went for more than eight yards. His pass protection broke down in the second half when the Ravens were going full bore with the rush and the lead. Cassel’s three interceptions were all poor decisions on his part. WR Dwayne Bowe was not only shut out, but he wasn’t thrown to in the entire game. That just can’t happen. Only McCluster caught more than one pass. …Read More!

Ravens Rally Around Reed

From Arrowhead Stadium

It’s the playoffs and emotions are always running high, but never higher than with the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday in Kansas City.

That was due to the family situation involving Ravens FS Ed Reed. His brother is missing in Louisiana after jumping into the Mississippi River supposedly to escape authorities who were chasing him. He’s not been found.

Reed played Sunday and while he didn’t get one of those patented Ed Reed interceptions with a TD return, he was active all day in the Baltimore defense, finishing with four tackles.

After the game, his teammates awarded Reed the game ball. Once he got showered, Reed took that ball and grabbed a private jet that took him to Louisiana.

“For Ed to do what he did under the circumstances and to play the way he played, to lead the way he led, that’s just an incredible thing,” said Ravens head coach John Harbaugh.

“I think what Ed’s going through, what the Reed family is going through, is a big part of this victory. That’s what will be remembered by our players. We’re a family, and the Reed family is part of the Raven family. And the Raven family is part of the Reed family. That’s the way it works with our team, our organization.” …Read More!

Ravens Heap Problems on KC Defense

From Arrowhead Stadium

Over the years, Todd Heap has been on the fringe of the list of the top two or three tight ends in the NFL.

It was always Antonio Gates, Tony Gonzalez and guys like Jason Witten and Chris Cooley.

None of those guys has a thing on a healthy Todd Heap. After missing three games and being shutout in another because of a thigh injury, Heap came into Sunday’s first-round game in the playoffs in pretty good shape.

Heap was feeling well enough to torment the Chiefs defense, something he did all day long. The 10-year veteran caught 10 passes for 108 yards and was always open any time that QB Joe Flacco needed somebody to throw the ball too.

“It was huge,” Flacco said of Heap’s contribution. “It’s tough for the safety and the linebacker to cover Todd. He was big underneath for us today.”

Heap’s day was a post-season record for catches and yardage for the Ravens. It was also a record for the most catches by an opponent against the Chiefs in the playoffs, bettering the nine caught by WR Haywood Jeffires of Houston (1993) and Indianapolis TE Dallas Clark (2006).   …Read More!

Cassel’s Season Ends With Thud

From Arrowhead Stadium

It’s the playoffs where NFL quarterbacks make their bones.

At the NFL’s premier position, the guy taking the snap is always in the spotlight. And the glare is never as bright as it is in the playoffs.

Matt Cassel got his first chance to elevate himself to the level of post-season QB on Sunday against Baltimore.

It was not a pretty picture. Cassel turned in one of his worst performances of his two-seasons as the Chiefs starting quarterback as Baltimore won easily 30-7.

Cassel only threw 16 passes on the day as the Chiefs couldn’t stay on the field with the ball. He chucked three interceptions and was sacked three times.

“This one hurts, it really does sting,” Cassel said. “I thought we had a great opportunity. We had a really good week of practice and it really came down to the second half and it came down to turnovers. We all know in playoff football you can’t turn the ball over and that starts with me.

“I forced a few balls and it didn’t turn out well. As a leader on this team and a leader of the offense I can’t do that.”

Cassel’s passer rating finished at 20.4. Rather than elevate his game, Cassel’s performance ranks among his three worst passing days in the 31 starts he’s made for the team. The numbers reveal how poorly he threw the ball, as he completed nine of 18 passes (50 percent) for 70 yards for 3.9 yards per attempt, no touchdowns and three interceptions. …Read More!

Column: A Season Ends In A Hurry

From Arrowhead Stadium

There is suddenness to the end of the season for teams that lose in the NFL playoffs.

One minute everyone is together, preparing for another game, taking phone calls from buddies on teams that saw their season end last week, and there’s a growing excitement about January football that is ahead.

Then comes the loss and a season doesn’t just end. It slams into the wall and crumples to the ground. Plus, there is no air bag to comfort the blow. There is just the realization that something that started in the last days of July is now kaput.

And, the ultimate goal was not reached.

“It’s the worst part of this,” said LB Derrick Johnson, who experienced the feeling back in 2006 when the Chiefs to the Colts. “The season is over and it brings an end to everything that we put together this season.

“It’s all done.” …Read More!

Chiefs Experience Post-Season Beat Down

From Arrowhead Stadium

Going into Sunday’s game in the wild card round of the AFC playoffs the Baltimore Ravens held a huge advantage in post-season experience over the Chiefs. Head coach John Harbaugh’s team had 42 players that were no longer virgins in the sense of the NFL playoffs.

The Chiefs had only 21 players with that experience, but added a 22nd player during the week. Todd Haley said several times during the run up to the game that experience was a factor only if the Chiefs allowed it to become one with the way they played.

Well … it became one. The Ravens looked like a team that had been there and done that. The Chiefs spent the second half appearing as a team that had no idea of how to handle the magnitude of the game it was playing.

And thus Baltimore put together a 30-7 victory and moved on in the AFC bracket for the playoffs. The Ravens will visit Pittsburgh next Saturday to face their AFC North division rival Steelers for the third time this season.

The Chiefs will go home, wherever home might be. They will gather on Monday and hear form their head coach and position coaches and then they’ll scatter to contemplate how a game that had them down by three points at half-time could get away from them so fast.

“The message to our guys was don’t let a tough thing at the end overshadow what we’ve done,” said head coach Todd Haley. “We made some really good progress. Now we have to build on it and take the steps you have to take to win a couple of these. …Read More!

Ravens Win, Chiefs Go Home

From Arrowhead Stadium

They needed to play a good game, with very few mistakes, if they had any hope of beating the Baltimore Ravens.

It didn’t happen. It wasn’t even close. The Ravens grabbed a 30-7 victory over the Chiefs, moving on to the next round of the playoffs to face the Steelers in Pittsburgh this coming Saturday.

The Chiefs are done for the season, ending what had been their best season in years with a two-game losing streak and a ticket out of the playoffs. The franchise now has the dubious honor of losing an NFL record seven straight post-season games.

There’s so much to consider after this game and season. Here’s our coverage:

  • GAME STORY: Lack of experience hurts Chiefs vs. Ravens.
  • COLUMN: It always ends quickly in the playoffs.
  • SIDEBAR: Cassel ends season with a thud.
  • SIDEBAR: Chiefs can’t stop Todd Heap.
  • SIDEBAR: Ravens rally around Reed.
  • SIDEBAR: Charlie Weis finishes poorly.
  • PLAY OF THE GAME: 4th-and-1.
  • NOTES: Ravens getting ready to face Steelers, again.
  • REPORT CARD: No passing grades here.


From Arrowhead Stadium

10:45 a.m. CST – Good morning and sorry for the late appearance of pre-game news. I’ll tell you this – there just may be an actually full house here for today’s game if traffic is any indication. Left the house at the same time as always and it took an extra hour to get into my parking spot. We’ll try to catch up as best we can.

10:46 a.m. – Inactive players for the Chiefs today are: WRs Quinten Lawrence and Chris Chambers, FB Mike Cox, S Reshard Langford, LB Charlie Anderson, C Rudy Niswanger and DT Anthony Toribio. The third inactive QB is Tyler Palko.

10:47 a.m. – Inactive players for the Ravens today are WR David Reed, S Tom Zbikowski, FB Jason McKie, ILB Tavares Gooden, DT Arthur Jones, TE Davon Drew, TE Dennis Pitta and DT Lamar Divens.

11:00 a.m. – Surprise with the inactive status of WR Chris Chambers and the fact recently signed WR Kevin Curtis is active. It likely has to do with special teams play, which Chambers does not do.

11:05 a.m. – Among the Ravens inactives the only noteable is WR-Returner David Reed who has a torn ligament in his left wrist.  He was the NFL leader in kick returns during the regular season. With his status, RB Jalen Parmele will likely handle the returns. …Read More!

Willie Roaf Among Hall of Fame Finalists

Former Chiefs OT Willie Roaf is among the 17 finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2011. The Hall announced the group Sunday morning.

Here are the Hall of Fame Selection Committee’s 17 finalists (15 modern-era and two senior nominees*) with their positions, teams, and years active follow:

  • Jerome Bettis – Running Back – 1993-95 Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams, 1996-2005 Pittsburgh Steelers
  • Tim Brown – Wide Receiver/Kick Returner – 1988-2003 Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders, 2004 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  •  Cris Carter – Wide Receiver – 1987-89 Philadelphia Eagles, 1990-2001 Minnesota Vikings, 2002 Miami Dolphins
    Dermontti Dawson – Center – 1988-2000 Pittsburgh Steelers
  •  Richard Dent – Defensive End – 1983-1993, 1995 Chicago Bears, 1994 San Francisco 49ers, 1996 Indianapolis Colts, 1997 Philadelphia Eagles
  •  Chris Doleman – Defensive End/Linebacker – 1985-1993, 1999 Minnesota Vikings, 1994-95 Atlanta Falcons, 1996-98 San Francisco 49ers
  • Marshall Faulk – Running Back – 1994-98 Indianapolis Colts, 1999-2005 St. Louis Rams
  • Charles Haley – Defensive End/Linebacker – 1986-1991, 1999 San Francisco 49ers, 1992-96 Dallas Cowboys
  • *Chris Hanburger – Linebacker – 1965-1978 Washington Redskins
  • Cortez Kennedy – Defensive Tackle – 1990-2000 Seattle Seahawks
  • Curtis Martin – Running Back – 1995-97 New England Patriots, 1998-2005 New York Jets
  • Andre Reed – Wide Receiver – 1985-1999 Buffalo Bills, 2000 Washington Redskins
  • *Les Richter – Linebacker – 1954-1962 Los Angeles Rams
  • Willie Roaf – Tackle – 1993-2001 New Orleans Saints, 2002-05 Kansas City Chiefs
  • Ed Sabol – Founder/President/Chairman – 1964-1995 NFL Films
  • Deion Sanders – Cornerback/Kick Returner/Punt Returner – 1989-1993 Atlanta Falcons, 1994 San Francisco 49ers, 1995-99 Dallas Cowboys, 2000 Washington Redskins, 2004-05 Baltimore Ravens
  • Shannon Sharpe – Tight End – 1990-99, 2002-03 Denver Broncos, 2000-01 Baltimore Ravens

Enrique’s Magic Number – Playoffs Edition

You’ve certainly realized that without Jamaal Charles the Chiefs would’ve lacked explosiveness in their offense during the ’10 calendar. That without each one of Dwayne Bowe’s 15 TD’s KC wouldn’t have finished 4 games above .500. And that without every single one of Matt Cassel’s 27 TD throws the team wouldn’t have won the AFC Western title. But now, Playoffs is the name of the game. And in this stage, tenacity is best rewarded. Therefore, our sights will be concentrated on the man that embodies that quality to perfection, and that goes by the name of Thomas Jones.

Given the recollections of the ’10 regular season, one can testify that the Chiefs have really reaped some major benefits whenever they’ve unleashed the Virginia graduate on their opponents – while suffering in those instances where they were unable to do so. Proof of that statement is the 0-3 record that the Chiefs have registered when Jones has failed to reach the 10-carry mark in a game; the 5-3 record when his number of carries fluctuated between 10 and 19; and of course, the immaculate 5-0 record in those games in which Jones has gotten 20 or more carries (22 against the Browns; 20 against the Jags; 20 against the Seahawks; 22 against the Rams; and 23 against the Titans). So, in conclusion, the Chiefs’ Magic Number to escape with a victory against the Ravens – and any other opponent that the Chiefs should face in the 2011 playoffs – is 20, which would be the minimum number of carries by Thomas Jones in a game. If Jones hits the 20-carry plateau, the Chiefs will not lose a game this post-season.

Welcome Back Playoffs … Game-Day Cup O’Chiefs

OK, Kansas City, the great Midwest and the Chiefs Nation – it’s been awhile I know, so this may be a good time to go over what happens when your team makes the tournament:

– Win and the season continues for at least another week, as they would go to Pittsburgh to face the Steelers.

– Lose, and there is no tomorrow; season is over.

Cut through all the plots and story lines of the post-season and really comes down to an either/or, a very simple set of ramifications for the Chiefs as a result of their game against the Baltimore Ravens. Kickoff is Sunday at noon and can we watched on CBS-TV with Jim Nantz and Phil Simms providing the necessary words.
“It’s really the easiest game of the year to figure out – win and we play again, lose and we go home,” said 11-year veteran G Brian Waters, who is playing in only his third post-season game. “I’m not ready to go home. I want to keep playing.”

The chronology of the playoffs for the Chiefs and Ravens is part of the panorama of this game. The Chiefs last made the playoffs in 2006. The last time they had a home game in the post-season was 2003. And the most painful fact for those among the red and gold faithful is that the Chiefs have not won a game in the playoffs since January 16, 1994.

The math on that is wild – it’s a week short of 17 years, or a full 883 weeks and slicing the pie to its smallest piece, 6,181 days since the Chiefs drank from the cup of post-season victory against the Oilers down in Houston.

…Read More!

Is It Lombardi Time For Haley? … Absolutely

In case you didn’t watch it, ESPN’s Chris Berman picked the Patriots and the Eagles to play in this year’s Super Bowl during the airing of his 2-Minute Drill on Friday Night.

That selection can be considered a safe one given that both Bill Belichick and Andy Reid have previously reached the title game; and because they are the longest-tenured head coaches amongst those 12 10 remaining in the 2011 playoffs. In short a safe pick because they’ve been there and they’ve done that.

However … would you believe me if I told you that right now Todd Haley has a better – make that substantially better – chance to hoist the Lombardi Trophy than Belichick, Reid and even Lovie Smith, coach of the NFC’s 2nd-seeded Bears and a previous Super Bowl participant?

Well, you should, and for that you only need to trust the Win-Now chart*.

Here’s what the Win-Now chart is all about – it will tell you that ever since NFL Free Agency was instituted back in ’93, only head coaches with five-or-less years on the job were able to win the Super Bowl, with the exceptions being Jimmy Johnson (Dallas), George Seifert (San Francisco) and Bill Cowher (Pittsburgh), as they were hired by their Super Bowl-winning teams before 1993.

Take a look at the updated version:  …Read More!

Compass Bowl – Pitt vs. Kentucky

  • BBVA Compass Bowl
  • Legion Field/Birmingham, Alabama
  • Saturday/11 a.m. on ESPN


Best prospect: #97 DE/OLB Jabaal Sheard, 6-2¾, 260 pounds, 4.76 seconds, Senior – Named the 2010 Big East Conference Defensive Player of the Year, Sheard was a three-year starter in the Pitt defense. In the ’10 season, the Florida native had 52 tackles, 14.5 tackles for loss, nine sacks, four forced fumbles and a recovered fumble. In 45 games, Sheard had 142 total tackles, 35.5 tackles for loss, 19.5 sacks, five forced fumbles and 38 QB hurries. …Read More!

Ravens Lead By Ray-Ray … Saturday Cup O’Chiefs

When the Baltimore Ravens roll onto the playing field at Arrowhead Stadium they will be led by R & R, and that’s not rest and relaxation. That’s Ray and Ray, as in Ray Lewis and Ray Rice.

Ray-Ray is about as dynamic a duo as any NFL team can put on the field. Ray Lewis has twice been the NFL Defensive Player of the Year, with 11 Pro Bowls, a spot on the NFL’s All-Decade team of the 2000s and 11 Pro Bowl invitations. He has defined the middle linebacker position in the NFL for the last 15 years.

Ray Rice in three seasons has become one of the most productive offensive weapons in the league. Over the last two seasons, Rice has had 1,339 and 1,220 rushing yards. He caught passes for 702 and 556 yards. The Rutgers product scored eight and six total touchdowns. Just three weeks ago, he ran for 153 yards on 31 carries while catching five passes for 80 yards against New Orleans. He scored touchdowns running and receiving in that game.

For the Chiefs to have a chance of victory in Sunday’s first-round game in the playoffs they will have to find a way to contain and minimize the contributions of Ray-Ray. …Read More!

Friday 1/7 Practice Report-Waters Returns

From Arrowhead Stadium

Despite the cold, blustery wind and a few snowflakes in the air, the Chiefs were outside for the final practice session of the week getting ready for Sunday’s game in the playoffs against Baltimore.

Sticking to his mantra of studying for the test at the place his team is going to take it, head coach Todd Haley had his team inside Arrowhead for the 80-minute workout where they covered short yardage, goal line, red zone and special teams.

“The wind was blowing and it was a good day,” Haley said. “It was a good practice.”

And all players were on board for the work, as LG Brian Waters return to practice after missing two days because of an illness. It was a stomach virus that laid Waters low, but he was a full participant in Friday’s practice, back working with the No. 1 offensive line at left guard. …Read More!

Things You Should Know About the Ravens

The Baltimore Ravens have been among the league’s better teams in the last decade, but they have not often crossed the radar screen of the Chiefs. In the last six seasons, these teams have played each other twice.

So here are a few tidbits of information on the Ravens and what they’ve gotten done in the last few years, especially under the direction of head coach John Harbaugh.


  • Since 2000, the Baltimore defense has been the league’s best across the board. They are No. 2 in yards allowed at 287.5 (Pittsburgh at No. 1), No. 1 in fewest points allowed, an average of 17 per game, No.2 in rushing yards allowed at 89.4 yards (Pittsburgh at No. 1), No.1 in takeaways with 365, interceptions with 232 and INTs returned for TDs at 30.
  • This is the third year in a row that the Ravens finished third in the NFL in fewest points allowed. This year they allowed 270 points, last year it was 261 points and in 2008, they gave up 244 points.
  • The Ravens are sending four defensive players to the Pro Bowl this season. Since they moved from Cleveland for the 1996 season, they’ve had 41 slots in the all-star game that went to 12 defensive players. That included 22 trips for five different linebackers, 13 slots for four defensive backs and six trips for three linemen.
  • For five consecutive seasons the Baltimore defense has ranked in the NFL’s top five units against the run. This year they’ve allowed 93.9 yards per game.

…Read More!

Cotton Bowl – LSU vs. Texas A&M

  • AT&T Cotton Bowl
  • Cowboys Stadium/Arlington, Texas
  • Friday/7 p.m. on Fox

Louisiana State

Best prospect: #7 CB Patrick Peterson, 6-1, 222 pounds, 4.42 seconds, Junior – Considered one of the top 10 prospects that will be in the 2011 NFL Draft. There’s no question that he’ll be coming out and leaving the Bayou Bengals with a year of eligibility left. This year alone, he was the Jim Thorpe Award winner, the Chuck Bednarik Award winner, the SEC Defensive Player of the Year, SEC Special Teams Player of the Year and first-team AP All-America. In 38 games, he had seven INTs, one returned for TD, two punt return TDs and 99 total tackles. Peterson averaged 15.7 yards on punt returns and 29.4 yards on kickoff returns. He’s got speed, size and strength. …Read More!

A Very Different Feeling … Friday Cup O’Chiefs

Rookie G Jon Asamoah knew something was different within moments after walking into the Chiefs locker room on Monday morning.

“There as just this feeling that wasn’t there on other Mondays,” Asamoah said. “You could sense it, there was more intensity.”

It didn’t take Asamoah long to find out what was different, what that feeling was – it’s the NFL playoffs.

There were 22 players in the Chiefs locker room who knew what to expect this week.

But that left 31 others, plus nine more on the practice squad, 40 players in all who felt the difference on Monday, but didn’t know why.

They do now.

“In practice, in the film room, in here (locker room), the intensity is increased,” said rookie S Kendrick Lewis. “There’s a sense of urgency. You know this is a big game. The intensity level has picked up big around here.

“You hear about how important it is, but this week you can feel it and sense it, this is serious and you have to put your mindset on this as win or die, win or go home, so you had better give it all you got.” …Read More!

College/NFL Draft Update – 1/7

Andrew Luck (left) broke a lot of hearts in the Carolinas on Thursday.

The Stanford quarterback has decided to return to school for the 2011 season and will not declare for the NFL Draft. The Carolina Panthers have the first selection of the ’11 NFL Draft and Luck figured to be the automatic selection.

But Luck made a decision to stay in Palo Alto. He said in a statement that he wants to earn his architectural degree from Stanford and he’s on track to do that by the spring of 2012.

It now leaves the No. 1 slot in the NFL Draft wide open for a number of different possibilities. Underclassmen have until January 15 to declare for the draft. They have to be three years out of high school, so anyone who is a senior, junior or redshirt sophomore can apply to join the draft.

Announcing this past week that they are staying in school rather than join the draft were Brigham Young OT Matt Reynolds and Oklahoma WR Ryan Broyles.

Here are the players who have elected to head to the NFL rather than stay in school, and they are lined up by position: …Read More!

Answer Bob: 1/6/11

Again, your questions have backed up on me so I will attempt to clear the decks here. If not, then volume two will likely come over the weekend. Thanks for your interest, your comments and your questions.

Responses to “I Was Wrong … Wednesday Cup O’Chiefs”

Chuck says: Bob, do you have any “feel” for who the Chiefs might give to Offensive Coordinator job to? Also thru the season I was very “unimpressed” with Mike Cox and Tim Castille, do you think that would be a position to upgrade in the offseason?

Bob says: I’ve got no good skinny on the offensive coordinator’s spot and I don’t think Todd Haley has spent a lot of time on the matter just yet. At least I hope he has not, given there are a few more important things for him to be working on right now. I will be interested to see what direction he goes, in light of the fact his last two coordinators didn’t work out. As for fullback, that’s one of those fringe positions these days in the NFL, where teams are more prone to keep guys like Cox and Castille than use a draft choice to select a fullback. Cox and Castille must be doing something right if the Chiefs are leading the NFL in rushing, but I agree with you that they aren’t an impressive duo to watch. I’m sure the Chiefs will look at FB, but there are other more important and pressing needs. …Read More!

Haley: “We Are A Good Team”

From the Truman Sports Complex

The words finally came out of his mouth. After refusing to call his team “good” at any point during the team’s run to a 10-6 regular season record, Chiefs head coach Todd Haley is willing to use that word as they prepare for the first-round of the AFC playoffs.

“Each year starts fresh and you are defined by the experiences that you go through,” Haley said Thursday, after the Chiefs practice. “Each and every game we played in the regular season helped define us getting to this point and what we are right now.”

So right now, what is the definition of the 2010 Chiefs?

“I told the guys that we were a good team,” Haley said. “I think it’s hard to get into the NFL playoffs and not be a good team. There are 12 teams left. Now it’s win or you’ll define yourself a little quicker than you want too.

“We are a developing team, and that’s continuing. We are a good team.” …Read More!

Thursday 1/6 Practice Report-Update

From the Truman Sports Complex

WR Dwayne Bowe was back, LG Brian Waters was not and SS Eric Berry was honored.

That was the roll call of importance on Thursday as the Chiefs went through their second practice of the week in preparation of Sunday’s post-season game against Baltimore at Arrowhead Stadium.

“We had a re-emphasis lesson, kindergarten rules of wash your hands in warm water for two minutes,” head coach Todd Haley said about trying to handle the flu bug that’s entered his locker room. “The important thing is to just get Brian back to health. That’s no fun (the flu), everybody knows it.”

Bowe was back and was listed as a full participant in Thursday’s practice. But the flu bug claimed another victim on Thursday in WR Quinten Lawrence who did not take part in practice.

With a grizzled veteran like Waters, missing two practices will have very little effect on him if he’s capable of playing on Sunday. “A guy like Brian has been around while,” said Haley. “If he can play, I’m sure he will.” …Read More!

Cassel’s Playoffs Experience … Thursday Cup O’Chiefs

The question appeared to stun Matt Cassel, if only for a second?

“What do you remember about the last time you started a game in the playoffs?” Cassel was asked on Wednesday.

Cassel furrowed his brow a bit, as the memory did not come rushing back quickly. Eventually details came to mind.

This coming Sunday, Cassel will start for the first time in an NFL post-season game when he goes up against the Baltimore Ravens at Arrowhead Stadium.

That start comes 11 years after his last one in the playoffs. That was on November 24, 1999 when he led Chatsworth High School into a Los Angeles City Invitational quarterfinal game against Palisades High School.

“That was a while ago, back in high school and we ended up losing,” Cassel said with a smile. “We had a lot of fun. I handed off a lot. I think we lost 45-44.”

Actually, Cassel and the Chancellors fell 49-42 that night, as they kept the ball on the ground. Teammate Samuel Wesley ran for 290 yards and four touchdowns, while Cassel completed only three of 11 passes for 46 yards.


Now over a decade later, Cassel gets another post-season start. …Read More!

Chiefs Starting QBs In Playoffs

The Chiefs have had eight different quarterbacks start their 21 games in the playoffs. Leading the group is Hall of Famer Len Dawson, who started eight post-season games. The Texans-Chiefs were 5-3 in those games with Dawson running the offense. No other starting QB has a winning record in starts in the playoffs.













Len Dawson 







Len Dawson 








Len Dawson 








Len Dawson 








Len Dawson 










Len Dawson










Len Dawson










Len Dawson










Todd Blackledge











Steve DeBerg











Steve DeBerg











Steve DeBerg











Dave Krieg











Joe Montana











Joe Montana











Joe Montana











Joe Montana











Steve Bono











Elvis Grbac











Trent Green











Trent Green










                                                            *-Super Bowl 1. **-Super Bowl 4.

Numbers Going Into The Playoffs

There are two quickly-forgotten games, the final game of the pre-season and the final game of the regular season of a team going to the playoffs.

Todd Haley says he wants to look forward, so let’s dispense with the fourth quarter of the season and look forward to the Baltimore Ravens. We’ll call it “overtime” in honor of Haley’s practice of breaking down the season into four quarters.

But we’ll also look at some comparative numbers for the four quarters of the season. The disturbing thing about that is the downward trend in the offense. The encouraging thing is that against non-division opponents the Chiefs continue to be more effective than they are against the guys who see them twice each year.

Chiefs on offense

The chart will show apples to apples – the Chiefs offense compared to the Ravens offense. In nearly every category, the Chiefs offense has an advantage over the Ravens offense. The only significant category in which the Ravens offense is better than the Chiefs is in passing – which is a product of the Chiefs emphasis on the run.

But it’s not a significant advantage and illustrates that the Ravens are more balanced. The four games the Ravens lost were by a total of 16 points. QB Joe Flacco had just one 300-yard passing game (301 vs. Carolina in a 33-13 win). Chiefs QB Matt Cassel had two 300-yard games – his 459-yard effort in a lopsided loss at Denver and 314 in the win over Tennessee.

Obviously offenses don’t play against other offenses. So how do the defenses match up? …Read More!

Wednesday 1/5 Practice Report-Update

From the Truman Sports Complex

Illness kept two Pro Bowlers from the practice field Wednesday as the Chiefs began their preparation week for Sunday’s game in the first-round of the AFC playoffs against Baltimore.

Head coach Todd Haley said that both LG Brian Waters and WR Dwayne Bowe were absent because of illness. They were not on the field during the open period of practice and were not in the locker room after practice was over. Haley provided no timetable on how long either one would be out. “I just go by today and today they were not able to go,” Haley said.

Waters and Bowe were the only players missing from the field, as newly signed WR Kevin Curtis was taking part in the work. He was wearing No. 17.

“I’m approaching this to do what they ask me to do,” said Curtis, who missed all but two weeks of the 2010 season as he recovered from surgery for testicular cancer. “I’m here to learn, to get in the playbook and if called upon be ready to go.” …Read More!

Chiefs Add WR Kevin Curtis

From the Truman Sports Complex

The Chiefs added veteran WR Kevin Curtis to their active roster on Wednesday. To make room for him, they sent DB Donald Washington to the injured-reserve list.

Curtis played two games with the Miami Dolphins in the last half of the ’10 season.  The Utah native has played in 81 NFL games, with St. Louis, Philadelphia and Miami. He also has started five games in the playoffs, catching 23 passes for 446 yards and a TD.

Over the last three seasons, Curtis has been hampered by injuries and illness, playing in just 15 games. In 2008 it was a sports hernia and a calf injury. The following year he had surgery on his left knee. This ’10 season, he was out after having surgery because of testicular cancer. He played in two games with Miami, where he had one catch for six yards.

Coming out of Utah State, Curtis was timed at 4.3 seconds in the 40-yard dash. The 6-0, 186-pounder also attended Snow  Junior College in Utah. He’s 32 years old.

Washington has been dealing with a left ankle/foot injury for several weeks and has not been on the game-day active roster.

The Chiefs also filled an open spot on their practice squad by re-signing TE Cody Slate. He was with the team in training camp, after signing as a rookie free agent out of Murray State.

I Was Wrong … Wednesday Cup O’Chiefs

This is a tough one to write, but it’s necessary.

I was wrong about the 2010 Kansas City Chiefs. After watching the team work through the off-season and then training camp, I pegged them as a 6-10 team, 8-8 at their ultimate best. There was no way it was a season where the Chiefs would win a division championship or slip into the playoffs. The roster had too many holes and QB Matt Cassel was still too iffy.

But here we are in the first week of January and the Chiefs are still playing. They finished the season with a 10-6 record. They won the AFC West and they host a first-round game in the playoffs this coming Sunday against Baltimore.

And even if their trip to the post-season ends this Sunday, it’s been a remarkably successful season for the franchise.

They were able to overcome what I felt back in the summer was their greatest deficiency – a lack of talent. Now, 16 games later, I still think the ’10 Chiefs have a shallow pool of players it can rely on to get things done. They are most definitely overachievers and any post-season success they have will be icing on the cake.

So what happened that made my prediction so wrong? There are four major reasons in my mind the Chiefs were successful this year:

  1. They stayed relatively healthy, losing not a single starter for the season, or even half the season.
  2. A weak schedule that included four games against the awful NFC West (4-0) and games against struggling AFC teams Buffalo and Cleveland (2-0).
  3. Coaching staff additions in Romeo Crennel, Charlie Weis, Emmitt Thomas and Mike Clark that gave the Chiefs a veteran group that had been through the football wars. That’s especially true with Crennel, as the defense has made the biggest strides from the ’09 to ’10 season.
  4. Development of holdover players from the Peterson/Edwards/Kuharich regime that have driven the success on offense and defense. …Read More!

Opponent: Baltimore Ravens

2010 record: 12-4, second place in the AFC North.

Victories: (12) – beat N.Y. Jets in opener by 1; took two games from Cleveland by 7 and 10 points; beat the Steelers by 3 at Pittsburgh; grabbed a 14-point victory over Denver; won by 3 points in OT vs. Buffalo; beat Miami by 16 points; Carolina fell by 24 points; 7 points over Tampa Bay; 6 points in overtime at Houston; topped New Orleans by 6 points; and Cincinnati by 6 points. That was an average margin of victory of 8.6 points.

(FS Ed Reed (left) is one of the most dangerous defensive playmakers in the history of the game. He’s scored 13 return TDs over his career and is the only player in NFL history to score on a punt return, blocked punt, interception and a fumble recovery.)

Defeats: (4) – lost in the second week of the season by 5 points at Cincinnati; by 3 points in OT at New England; 5 points at Atlanta; 3 points to Pittsburgh in Baltimore. That’s an average margin of defeat of four points.

Misc. on ’10 record: they were 7-1 at home, 5-3 on the road; Ravens were 4-2 in their division; 9-3 in the AFC; 2-1 in overtime.

Last year’s record: 9-7, second place in AFC North; they went 1-1 in the playoffs, beating the Patriots in New England 33-14, then losing to the Colts in Baltimore 20-3.   …Read More!

Enrique’s Epics & Fails – Week #17

I’m not a masochist, but I have obligations to fulfill. Then again, I won’t blame you if you file this under “F” for “Forgettable”. Let’s get this over with.




That’s it. I’ve come to a resolution. Whenever I get married, I’m gonna hire Tamba Hali to be the wedding singer, and I know that my bride would approve the motion. After all, I have revealing evidence (3 sacks on Derrick Thomas Day, 2½ on Marty Schottenheimer Day) to support the claim, that the man really knows how to perform on special occasions.

…Read More!

Sugar Bowl – Ohio State vs. Arkansas

  • Allstate Sugar Bowl
  • Louisiana Superdome/New Orleans
  • Tuesday/7:30 p.m. on ESPN

Ohio State

Best prospect: #97 DE Cameron Heyward, 6-5, 288 pounds, 4.92 pounds, Senior – Statistically, the ’10 season has not been Heyward’s best, but that doesn’t seem to have hurt his evaluations by NFL scouts or among the teams that play him, as he was voted first-team All-Big 10 defense. Heyward had 42 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks. In his junior season of ’09, he had 46 tackles, 10 for loss and 6.5 sacks. Over his 51 games in the crimson and cream, Heyward has 157 total tackles, 34 tackles for loss, 13.5 sacks, one interception and two forced fumbles. …Read More!

The Experience Factor … Tuesday Cup O’Chiefs

When it comes to experience in the NFL playoffs among those 12 teams still playing, they Chiefs rank No. 12.

That means no matter who they played in the first round of the 2010 AFC tournament they were going to be a serious underdog when it came to been there, done that.

“We’ve got 21 players or so that have played in post-seasons games and have great, great experience to pass along,” head coach Todd Haley said on Monday.

All well and good, but here’s the kicker – the Baltimore Ravens team that will come in for Sunday’s game has 42 players that have played in at least one post-season game. That’s double the number of Chiefs.

It only gets worse from there. The Chiefs have nine of their 22 starters with experience in the playoffs. There are 21 starts on offense from five players and 20 games on defense from four players. The bulk of those post-season starts belong to OLB Mike Vrabel with 17 of the 20 defensive starts.

The Ravens meanwhile have 19 of 22 starters with post-season experience. There are 54 starts on offense from 11 players and 46 starts on defense from eight players.   …Read More!

Orange Bowl – Stanford vs. Virginia Tech

  • Discover Orange Bowl
  • Sun Life Stadium/Miami
  • Monday/7:30 p.m. on ESPN


Best prospect: #12 QB Andrew Luck, 6-3¾, 235 pounds, 4.73 seconds, Redshirt-Sophomore – There’s no question that Luck is ready to move into the NFL after two years of starting at Stanford. He was named the Pac-10 Conference Offensive Player of the Year for his ’10 season and earned second-team AP All-America honors. Luck has the entire package – physical, mental and emotional. That started at home a long time ago thanks to his father, former NFL QB Oliver Luck. This year, he threw for 3,045 yards in 12 games with 28 TDs and seven interceptions. He completed 70 percent of his passes. Over his 24 games he’s thrown for 5,620 yards, with 41 TDs, 11 INTs, a 63.9 completion percentage and an average gain per attempt of 8.8 yards. Luck is also a threat to run the ball, going for 792 yards on 113 carries with five touchdown runs. …Read More!

Sunday’s Best Performances – 1/2


  • 97 – Denver CB Cassius Vaughn kickoff return for TD vs. San Diego (L).
  • 94 – New England WR Julian Edelman punt return for TD vs. Miami (W).
  • 92 – N.Y. Giants WR Mario Manningham TD catch vs. Washington (W).
  • 69 – Tampa Bay RB Michael Spurlock kickoff return vs. New Orleans (W).
  • 68 – Washington WR Anthony Armstrong TD pass vs. N.Y. Giants (L).
  • 63 – Dallas P Mat McBriar punt vs. Philadelphia (W).
  • 62 – San Diego CB Antoine Cason punt return vs. Denver (W).
  • 62 – San Francisco CB Tarell Brown interception return for TD vs. Arizona (W).
  • 61 – Atlanta P Michael Koenen punt vs. Carolina (W).
  • 61 – Miami P Brandon Field punt vs. New England (L).


  • 180 – Houston RB Arian Foster (right) on 31 carries, 2 TDs vs. Jacksonville (W).
  • 158 – N.Y. Jets RB Joe McKnight on 32 carries vs. Buffalo (W).
  • 137 – Oakland RB Michael Bush on 25 carries, 1 TD vs. Chiefs (W).
  • 120 – San Diego RB Ryan Mathews on 26 carries, 3 TDs vs. Denver (W).
  • 108 – Jacksonville RB Rashad Jennings on 22 carries, 1 TD vs. Houston (L). …Read More!

Jamaal Just Misses Record

From Arrowhead Stadium

It’s one of the oldest standards in the NFL Record Book. In the 1963 season the great Jim Brown ran the ball 291 times for the Cleveland Browns, finishing with 1,863 yards.

That works out to 6.40206 yards per carry, otherwise 6.4 yards.

On Sunday, Jamaal Charles broke that record.

And then, he didn’t break the record.

It was that kind of day for the Chiefs.

Charles finished the regular season with 1,467 yards on 230 carries. That’s an average of 6.3782608 yards per carry, otherwise 6.38 yards.

But here’s the deal: before his final carry of the day, Charles had the record. He was at 229 carries for 1468 yards. That’s an average of 6.4104803 yards, or 6.41 yards, just slightly better than Brown’s 6.40.

That last carry however, was stopped for a one-yard loss.

“I love making history,” Charles said after the game. “I love going out there and doing the right thing for my team. That’s what I was trying to do. I wish I would’ve gained more yards. But hey, I didn’t.”

Charles also failed to catch Houston’s Arian Foster for the rushing title. Foster had 180 yards on 31 carries versus Jacksonville. Here are their numbers for the season:

  • Arian Foster        327 carries    1,616 yards    4.9 yards.
  • Jamaal Charles   230                   1,467 yards    6.38 yards.

For Charles, he produced 1,467 rushing yards and 468 receiving yards. That’s a full season of 1,935 yards on 275 touches. That’s an average of seven yards every time he had the ball in his hands.

Charles talked about going after the rushing title on Sunday, but did not really get a chance to make it happen.

“I wasn’t even paying attention,” said Charles. “I wasn’t even worrying about it. I was just out there running the ball. It’s not all about me. It’s about my linemen. It’s something that, once they retire, they had a dude who led the division and the NFL. We didn’t do it.”

But oh for that one yard he lost on that final carry.

Notes: Raiders Losers No More

From Arrowhead Stadium

The rumors had started before the Raiders season finale against the Chiefs had even kicked off. Reportedly, Oakland head coach Tom Cable will not hold that job next year. He may be fired within a week.

That would be a ridiculous end to what was a tremendous coaching job by Cable and his staff in this 2010 season. By crunching the Chiefs 31-10, they finished 8-8 on the season and 6-0 in the AFC West. They are the first team to go unbeaten in their own division and not make the playoffs.

Ignoring the rumors, Cable was in for celebrating on Sunday.

“We’re not losers anymore,” Cable said. “We’re 8-8. That’s not what we wanted. We wanted to be a playoff team, but we came here to get the eighth win which means we were 6-0 in the division and most importantly we’re done with that losing. We’re not losers anymore.”

It’s the first time since their Super Bowl seasons of 2002 that the Raiders finished the season without a losing record. In seven seasons (2003-09), they did not win more than five games.

They got eight this year by playing tough in their own division. At 6-0, they were 2-8 outside the AFC West.

“When we have taken care of the ball, we’ve been pretty good and it looks to be that way in all these AFC West games,” said Cable. “Outside (the division) we had too many turnovers and that’s what it really comes down to.”

In six division games, the Raiders had five giveaways and finished plus-10 in the turnover ratio. In the other 10 games outside the division, they had 21 giveaways and finished minus-12 in the turnover ratio.

So what do the Raiders need to do in 2011 to get back to the playoffs? They now have the longest post-season drought in the division with eight seasons out of the playoffs.

“I think we’ve got to come to grips with being able to take care of the ball better,” said Cable. “That’s the bottom line here. “I think we’re on the right path. We just need to get better and learn how to take care of the ball better.”

Apparently we’ll know soon about Cable and his future – his contract calls for an option for the 2011 season to be picked up by January 18. He’s now 17-27 as Raiders head coach.


It was another one of those games where the number of butts in the seats was not what the Chiefs released as paid attendance: 67,045. There were empty seats in every section, although those at mid-field in the lower and upper level were pretty much filled. As usual, the club level was sparse in the end zones. It was the same with the upper deck in the end zones.

Overall, the crowd was into the game in the first half and certainly made enough noise that the Raiders got flagged for several false start penalties. Sometimes with the Raiders it’s hard to know whether it comes down to crowd noise or just the lack of discipline by the silver and black.


Although the Chiefs never talk about injuries after the game, the Raiders do. Isn’t that interesting! QB Jason Campbell suffered a right knee contusion when he was tackled running out of bounds by OLB Tamba Hali. He missed one series and then went back in the game. TE Zach Miller (knee sprain) and S Michael Huff (turf toe) left the game, but returned. The most serious injury for the Raiders was DE Matt Shaughnessy, who suffered an MCL strain in the first half and did not return to the field.

For the Chiefs, well it turns out that QB Brodie Croyle was injured; that’s why he was listed as the No. 3 quarterback for the game. But Croyle’s name did not appear on the team’s injury report during the past week.


KICKOFFS – Ryan Succop had three kickoffs and did a great job of making life difficult for Jacoby Ford. Succop’s kicks went to the five, three and 11-yard lines. They were returned out no farther than the 25-yard line.

PUNTS – Dustin Colquitt had six punts on the day that went for 34, 45, 46, 32, 50 and 25 yards. Only three were returned, for a total of three yards

OAKLAND RETURNS – The longest of the day were a pair of 18-yard returns on kickoffs by Ford. Good job by Chiefs coverage.

CHIEFS RETURNS – Javier Arenas returned three punts for an average of 6.7 yards, with a long of 14. Dexter McCluster had three kickoff returns for 78 yards, with a long of 36.

COVERAGE – WR Terrance Copper had two tackles, while WR Verran Tucker, LB Demorrio Williams, LB Corey Mays and S Ricky Price had one tackle each.


Bill Leavy and his crew were in charge and they ended up walking off a total of 15 penalties for 116 penalty yards. They got the Raiders for 10 penalties and the Chiefs for five calls. Here’s where they got K.C.:

  1. Offense – Intentional grounding – Matt Cassel for minus-13 yards.
  2. Defense – Illegal contact – Brandon Flowers for minus-5.
  3. Defense – Face mask – Jovan Belcher for minus-15 yards.
  4. Offense – 12 men in huddle – Jamaal Charles did not come off for minus 1.
  5. Offense – False start – Branden Albert, for minus-5.

There were no replay reviews, so this allowed things to click along for a game that went 3 hours, 4 minutes.


Inactive players for the Chiefs were WR Quinten Lawrence, DB Donald Washington, FB Mike Cox, S Reshard Langford, LB Charlie Anderson, C Rudy Niswanger and DT Anthony Toribio. The inactive third quarterback was Brodie Croyle, supposedly because of some sort of injury, details of which remain sketchy..

Inactive players for the Raiders were WR Johnnie Lee Higgins, RB Darren McFadden, CB Walter McFadden, CB Jeremy Ware, G Daniel Loper, G Bruce Campbell and DT Richard Seymour. The inactive third quarterback was J.T. O’Sullivan.

With Seymour (hamstring) out, DT John Henderson started in his place. McFadden’s (toe) place in the starting lineup was taken by Michael Bush. The Raiders didn’t miss either one.

The Chiefs opened in a 1-1-3, with Chris Chambers, Dwayne Bowe and Dexter McCluster all on the field, with RB Thomas Jones and TE Tony Moeaki. They then shifted into the Wildcat formation, with Jones taking the direct shotgun snap and Cassel running out to his right to lineup as a WR.

The Raiders used about a dozen plays where they brought OT Khalif Barnes as an extra blocker. He usually lined up on the right side, giving the Raiders the look of an unbalanced line.

The Chiefs 2011 Opponents

With the end of the regular season, we can tell you who the Chiefs will face next year and where. We just can’t tell you when.

Under the NFL scheduling format, here are the 13 opponents they will face:

HOME                                    ROAD

  • Denver                       Denver
  • Oakland                     Oakland
  • San Diego                  San Diego
  • Buffalo                       New England
  • Miami                        New York Jets
  • Green Bay                  Chicago
  • Minnesota                  Detroit
  • Pittsburgh                  Indianapolis

Report Card: Chiefs vs. Raiders

From Arrowhead Stadium

RUSHING OFFENSE: D – There was no consistency at any point for the running game that averaged four yards a carry. But take out the 47-yard run by Jamaal Charles and that’s 28 carries for just 68 yards or 2.4 yards per carry. Thomas Jones never got untracked against the much quicker Raiders defense, getting 17 yards on 10 carries. His longest run was four yards. Charles finished with 87 yards.

PASSING OFFENSE: F – The lack of pass protection compromised the entire Chiefs offense as QB Matt Cassel had one of the worst games of his NFL career. Cassel finished with an ugly 19.1 passer rating. But he had no help, as he was sacked five times and the Raiders defense got seven sacks in all. Cassel threw a pair of INTs, including a pick-six. No completion went for more than 19 yards.

RUSH DEFENSE: F – The worst performance of the season against the run, giving up 209 yards and 5.6 yards per carry. Even though the Raiders did not have Darren McFadden, it did not slow them down one bit, as Michael Bush hit for 137 yards on 25 carries. He had runs of 15, 16, 22 and 26 yards. Even QB Jason Campbell got out of the pocket and picked up 21 yards.

PASS DEFENSE: D – One of the few good things the Chiefs did on Sunday was apply pass rush pressure on Oakland QBs, picking up four sacks along the way. But they gave up a couple of big pass plays that did not allow them to get off the field. Rookie WR Jacoby Ford continued to torment them, with a 35-yard catch and run that highlighted his speed and how devastating it is in the open field.

SPECIAL TEAMS: C – The best grade of the day goes to the kicking game and they did not fantastic. There was still nothing coming out of the return game with Javier Arenas or Dexter McCluster. The Raiders were intent on not allowing McCluster to beat them, squib kicking several times on the afternoon. Punter Dustin Colquitt did not have a particularly good day, averaging just 37.7 yards a punt. But the coverage teams did a good job keeping Ford under control, allowing him just a pair of 18-yard kickoff returns.

COACHING: F – It’s hard to hand out any type of kudos or good grades to Todd Haley and his staff after such a poor performance. We heard all week that the Chiefs were preparing to win, but that didn’t show on the field against the Raiders. They were not able to answer or solve the problems they faced. Not all of that was the fault of coaching, since Oakland was simply beating the snot out of the Chiefs on the line of scrimmage. How much the rumors and now truth of Charlie Weis’ impending departure factored into what happened is tough to judge. But it didn’t help.

Raiders Crush Chiefs 31-10; Ravens Up Next

From Arrowhead Stadium

All week leading up to Sunday’s regular season finale, the Chiefs said they were preparing to win just like they did 15 times before.

They may have prepared to win, but they certainly didn’t play to win. If they were trying to build momentum going into the AFC playoffs they failed miserably as the Raiders grabbed a 31-10 victory.

The loss coupled with an Indianapolis victory to give the Colts the AFC South, dropped the Chiefs to the No. 4 seed in the AFC bracket of the NFL playoffs. They’ll host wildcard team the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium. Kickoff is set for 12 noon.

It was just a seven-point game at half-time and the Chiefs tied it at 10-10 in the third quarter on a TD run by RB Jamaal Charles. The rest of the second half belonged to the Raiders, who finish the season 8-8, but more impressively they went 6-0 within the division.

As always a lot of angles to this game and we’ve got them covered here:

  • GAME STORY: Chiefs overwhelmed by Raiders.
  • COLUMN: Gotta forget this one quick
  • SIDEBAR 1: Charlie is a goner.
  • SIDEBAR 2: Cassel gets beat up.
  • SIDEBAR 3: Chiefs defense falters.
  • SIDEBAR 4: Jamaal just misses record.
  • NOTES: Raiders not losers anymore.
  • REPORT CARD: Failing grades all around for Chiefs.
  • PICTURE OF PLAYOFFS: Chiefs go Sunday.
  • Next year’s Chiefs opponents.

Chiefs Defense Falls Flat

From Arrowhead Stadium

Wallace Gilberry was speaking only for himself, but it may have been words that stood for every player on the Chiefs defense.

“I didn’t show up today,” Gilberry said after the Raiders handed the Chiefs a 31-10 loss on Sunday. “I have to do better than that. We all do.”

That’s for sure. The Chiefs had troubles all day against the Raiders offense. Even without Darren McFadden, Oakland was able to run the ball with Michael Bush. He went for 137 yards on 25 carries and became the first running back not named Knowshon Moreno to run for over 100 yards against the Kansas City defense.

“I cannot give any excuses,” said ILB Derrick Johnson. “We got beat up today. They made more plays than us and it just got out of hand.

“We didn’t do a good job of playing team defense today. We were out of position at times and the times we were out of position, they got a big play out of it.”

There were plenty of big plays for the Raiders offense, especially from Bush. He had runs for 15, 16, 22 and 26 yards. That’s 79 yards of his 137 rushing yards on four plays. The biggest run was a 26-yarder for a touchdown in the third quarter where Bush zipped through the Chiefs defense with only a few arm tackles in his way.

“I felt like we fought with them; it was a tough fought game,” said Gilberry. “We made some mistakes and they capitalized on them and got away with the victory.”

They had four sacks, but only one of those came in the second half when they needed pressure on Oakland QB Jason Campbell. OLB Tamba Hali with 2.5 sacks was the only defender consistently in the neighborhood of the quarterback. DE Glenn Dorsey shared a sack with Hali and ILB Jovan Belcher earned his first sack of the season.

“That wasn’t the type of performance we prepared for,” said Johnson. “I thought we prepared well during the week. We didn’t slack off at all during the week.”

Added Flowers: “We had a very good week of practice. We were flying around out there on Friday afternoon and making things happen. We came into the game ready and well prepared.”

That wasn’t visible in what happened on the field. The Raiders put together several long scoring drives and ended up with 6:56 time of possession advantage, thanks to converting six of 13 on third down.

“We couldn’t get ourselves off the field,” said FS Kendrick Lewis. “We had them in some tough situations, but they were able to convert.”

The Raiders converted on average a 3rd-and-4.5 that included a 3rd-and-10 play where they got 16 yards and a 3rd-and-2 where they gave up a 20-yard completion.

“We’ve got to get off the field and we didn’t do that consistently,” said Johnson.

Largely because they didn’t get the kind of performance from the defense that they’ve put on the field over the last two weeks in victories over St. Louis and Tennessee.

“We’ve got to be a pro in this and not let today affect next week,” Johnson said.

Cassel Survives Raiders Pounding

From Arrowhead Stadium

In one afternoon, Chiefs QB Matt Cassel took more hits from the pass rush than he did during the first 15 games of the year.

Five times he went down, and there was two more of backup QB Tyler Palko. Press box statisticians totaled the Raiders with 15 other quarterback hits.

The Oakland Raiders pass rush was without Richard Seymour, but that didn’t much matter as they came after Cassel like he was a chicken drumstick and they had not eaten in weeks. That Cassel was able to get up after several of those shots was most remarkable.

“They did a great job of creating pressure today,” Cassel said of the Raiders. “They didn’t do much that we weren’t prepared for. They mixed it up a little bit on third down, but first and second down they did exactly what we thought all day.”

This pass rush had nothing to do with schemes and game plan tricks. The Raiders demolition of the Chiefs pass protection was simply a case of blockers being beaten physically on a regular basis. Across the board, from LT Branden Albert through RT Barry Richardson, there were moments where the Chiefs offensive line was simply overwhelmed by the pressure coming from the likes of OLB Kamerion Wimbley, DEs Lamarr Houston and Jarvis Moss and DTs Tommy Kelly, John Henderson and Desmond Bryant. They also got a sack on a blitz by SS Tyvon Branch.

Here’s how the five sacks of Cassel and two more sacks at the end of the game of QB Tyler Palko came down:

  1. 3rd-and-12 @ KC 43, Wimbley sacks Cassel for minus-6 yards.
  2. 3rd-and-23 @ KC 32, Wimbley and Moss split sack of Cassel for minus-11.
  3. 3rd-and-11 @ OAK 43, Branch sacks Cassel for minus-12.
  4. 2nd-and-15 @ KC 35, Bryant downs Cassel for minus-15.
  5. 3rd-and-10 @ OAK 18, Bryant drops Cassel for minus-2.
  6. 1st-and-10 @ OAK 25, Palko sacked by Wimbley for minus-9.
  7. 2nd-and-19 @ OAK 34, Wimbley and Moss take down Palko for minus-1.

That’s a total of minus-56 yards in the Chiefs offensive column.

“We didn’t execute,” said RG Ryan Lilja. “It was nothing specific. We just didn’t play very well. It is disappointing because we clearly dropped the ball at home.”

That Cassel didn’t drop the ball and fumble on any of those hits is remarkable. But he threw a pair of interceptions. The first one was simply a bad decision, when he was flushed out of the pocket in the end zone and his pass for WR Dexter McCluster was grabbed by S Michael Huff.

“That was my fault,” Cassel said. “I was scrambling outside the pocket and I thought I could get it in there. I was trying to force something down field and unfortunately it didn’t work out. I’ve got to do a better job of protecting the ball in that situation.”

Actually what has to happen is the Chiefs have to do a better job of protecting Cassel. Over the first 12 games of the season, they allowed 17 sacks. In the last four games of the season, they allowed 15, pushing the season total to 32.

It made for an ugly day for Cassel. He completed just 11 of 33 passes (completion percentage of 33 percent) for 115 yards, or an average per attempt of 3.5 yards. His passer rating finished up at 19.1, the second worst passing performance of his Kansas City career.

Chiefs Can’t Finish With Momentum

From Arrowhead Stadium

As football afternoons in January go, it doesn’t get much better than Sunday afternoon. The sun was shining, it was cold but not bitterly so. There were a lot of people in the seats enjoying football in person, rather than one of those bowl games on television.

Too bad the Chiefs didn’t show up for the game and enjoy the day as well. On the final Sunday of the regular season the Chiefs turned in one of their worst performances of the season, getting smashed by the Oakland Raiders 31-10.

The loss left them 10-6 on the season and sitting as the No. 4 seed in the AFC bracket for the playoffs. That brings them a home game next Sunday against the No. 5 seed, the 12-4 Baltimore Ravens.

Should they win that game and the Jets beat Indianapolis, the Chiefs would go to Pittsburgh. If they win and the Colts beat New York, they would face New England in the divisional round.

The hook the Chiefs were hanging their helmet on after Sunday’s debacle was the playoffs. The Raiders are going home at 8-8 and with a 6-0 record in the division. The Chiefs have more work to do.

“That’s the important thing here,” said CB Brandon Flowers. “We’ve got another game to get ready for. We’d like to start right now.”

That was said in the locker room moments after the game was over and before the Chiefs knew who their opponent was for the wildcard round. Everyone associated with the Chiefs wanted to rid themselves of the memory of the spanking they received from the silver and black.

“Today was very simple – the Raiders came in here and handled us in most areas,” said head coach Todd Haley. “Running the football for 200 plus rushing, you give up that kind of yardage you are going to lose the game. Give up seven sacks you are going to lose the game. Turn the ball over and you are going to lose the game. We just did too many things overall that will get you beat.”

Did they ever – it was an ugly stat sheet for the Chiefs, a very good one for the Raiders:

  • Oakland ran for 209 yards while limiting the leading rushing game in the league to 115 yards. That’s Raiders plus-94 yards.
  • Even without star RB Darren McFadden, the Raiders got a big game from RB Michael Bush with 137 yards o n 25 carries. RB Jamaal Charles had 87 yards on 14 carries. Give Oakland a plus-50 from the No. 1 backs.
  • The Raiders sacked Chiefs quarterbacks seven times, compared to four for the Chiefs. That’s Raiders plus-three.
  • QB Matt Cassel was picked off twice, while the Raiders turned the ball over only once. Give Oakland a plus-one in the turnover ratio.
  • Oakland threw for 135 yards, compared to 86 for the Chiefs. That’s Raiders plus- 49.

“Their coaches, their players did a good job and dominated us all day long,” said Cassel. “That’s what happened today. There’s no other way to put that.”

This game couldn’t have started out any better for the Chiefs. On the Raiders first offensive play of the game, WR Darrius Heyward-Bey was running an end-around when ILB Jovan Belcher knocked the ball loose and it was recovered by ILB Derrick Johnson at the Oakland 17-yard line.

But portending the way things would go all afternoon, the Chiefs only moved the ball five yards on three plays and had to settle for a Ryan Succop 30-yard field goal and an early 3-0 lead.

That held up until early in the second quarter, when QB Jason Campbell led the Raiders offense on a 14-play, 91-yard drive. That included a 35-yard completion to rookie WR Jacoby Ford who again tormented the Chiefs. The drive ended with a Campbell five-yard TD pass to WR Chaz Schilens who got behind the Chiefs goal line defense. The PAT kick by Sebastian Janikowski gave Oakland a 7-3 lead.

Later in the first half, Janikowski added a 38-yard field goal at the end of a 13-play, 54-yard drive. That made the score 10-3 as the Raiders dominated the second quarter.

But the Chiefs were still in the picture and on their first possession of the second half they got the running game going for the only time all afternoon. Juiced by a 47-yard run by Charles, they went 64 yards on six plays. The TD came from Charles, scoring on a five-yard run. The PAT kick tied the score at 10-10.

That was the last time the Chiefs had any say in the game’s outcome. Coaches always talk to their teams about when they are on the road they have to answer a score with a score. That’s just what the Raiders did. This was another long drive, as they kept the ball for nine plays and 75 yards, picked up 20 yards in penalties against the Chiefs and ended up scoring when Bush went for a 26-yard TD jaunt.

“At different times I felt like we battled back to get in the game and just could never get playing together and make good things happen,” said Haley.

What happened next was one of the worst fourth quarters the Chiefs have played in sometime. On their next 11 offensive plays, they gained 12 yards. In that span, Cassel threw a pair of interceptions. The first set up a 10-yard touchdown pass from Campbell to Ford. The second INT went for a pick-six, as CB Stanford Routt ran 22 yards for a touchdown.

That was 13 minutes, 51 seconds off the game clock and the Chiefs went from being tied to being down by 21 points.

Game, set and match – it all went to the Raiders.

“The Oakland Raiders clearly played better than us, and we did not play well enough to win,” said Haley. “The team that plays the best generally wins on Sunday. We had chances to get out to a good start and we weren’t able to do it. There were opportunities to get this thing going, and we just did not execute and then we did things from that point on that will get you beat.”

So they are now 10-6, a full six games better than their finish last season. They are in the playoffs for the first time since 2006, hold the division title for the first time since 2003 and will play their first home game in the post-season since that ’03 season.

“You have to take this loss on the chin,” said Flowers. “You can’t hang your head at all. We are going into a whole new season right now. We are going in with no wins and no losses. We have to come out here with energy next week and do what we have been doing at home: make plays and keep the crowd into it.”

Schedule For First Round of Playoffs

Here’s how the playoffs will come down this coming weekend:


3:30 p.m. CDT – New Orleans Saints (11-5) @ Seattle (7-9), on NBC.

7 p.m. – New York Jets (11-5) @ Indianapolis Colts (10-6), on NBC.


Noon CDT – Baltimore Ravens (12-4) @ Chiefs (10-6), CBS.

3:30 p.m. – Green Bay Packers (10-6) @ Philadelphia Eagles (10-6), FOX.

Charlie’s Bye-Bye Is Official

From Arrowhead Stadium

Rumor became fact on Sunday when the announcement came that Chiefs offensive coordinator Charlie Weis was leaving to accept the same position with the University of Florida.

The man who made the announcement was Chiefs head coach Todd Haley.

“Charlie Weis is moving on,” Haley said after the game. “This is a bittersweet deal for me, because Charlie is a guy that I was really excited about having in here. Charlie has been a big part of what we’ve done this year. He’s going to continue to be a big part of what we do this year. Charlie is a professional. He’s been through a similar situation a few years ago where there were some potential distractions that could have been distractions. He did his job to the fullest and helped his team win a Super Bowl. I have the utmost confidence that’s what we’ll go on doing.”

That would have been the 2004 season, when Weis was named head coach at Notre Dame, while still serving as offensive coordinator of the New England Patriots. Weis kept on coaching the Pats and they went all the way to a Super Bowl victory.

In this case, he’s not leaving to be head coach, but offensive coordinator. He will be formally introduced on Monday by Florida, but he will continue to coach with the Chiefs until their run in the playoffs comes to an end. …Read More!

Column: Forgetting Must Come Quickly

From Arrowhead Stadium

It’s ironic that Marty Schottenheimer was in the house on Sunday, being honored as the 2010 inductee to the Chiefs Hall of Fame.

Marty had the midnight rule for his team. They could enjoy a victory, or wallow in a defeat only until the clock struck midnight. Then, they had to move on.

Todd Haley has worked with a similar rule this season, although his was for 24 hours. By the time Monday night rolled around, his players need to expunge the outcome from their short-term memory.

I get the feeling there was a rules change on Sunday. After getting crushed by the Raiders 31-10, they instituted a 10-minute rule. That’s essentially how long the Chiefs took to walk off the field, get in the locker room and confront their sorry performance against Oakland.

But then, it’s not hard to put behind you something that obviously wasn’t important. A team like the Chiefs, even one that is still developing, growing, rebuilding, in the process – whatever term you want to use – does not allow an opponent to walk onto the Arrowhead playing field and kick their butts. No way, no how, especially if the game and its outcome are important.

All week the players and coaches told us beating Oakland was important. They were preparing to win, just like they did in the previous 15 weeks. They wanted to go 8-0 at home. They wanted to preserve their No.3 seed in the AFC bracket for the playoffs.

They just didn’t play to win. …Read More!

Pre-Game Coverage – Chiefs vs. Raiders

McFadden and Seymour out for Raiders; Croyle listed as 3rd QB today. All the inactives are below.

From Arrowhead Stadium

10:00 a.m. CST – The sun is shining and it’s a beautiful morning at the Truman Sports Complex as the Chiefs and Raiders are two hours way from kickoff. There is a light breeze blowing the flags about at the top of the west end zone scoreboard. But right now it certainly is not as windy as it usually is, or could be. It’s a wind out of the west. Today’s forecast from the National Weather Service: Sunny, with a high near 37, southwest wind between 10 and 15 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph.

10:01 a.m. – The Chiefs quarterbacks and receivers are out for their normal pre-pre-game throwing session. Everyone seems to be present and accounted for in the receiving lines.

10:04 a.m. – Tamba Hali and Andy Studebaker are both out early for their weekly session with Grand Master Kim on hand-to-hand fighting.

10:15 a.m. – The Raiders are having their own little pre-pre-game throwing session although it does not appear to include all the pitchers and catchers. Right now there are a lot of bodies on the field enjoying the morning sunshine.

10:20 a.m. – Charlie Weis is on the field having a conversation with Raiders DL Richard Seymour who is dressed like he’s not going to play today. He’s been fighting a hamstring injury. The Sporting News is reporting that the Weis to Florida deal is done and will be announced on Monday. The Chiefs have nothing to say on the subject at this point. …Read More!

Enrique’s Video Vault: Honoring Marty

Marty Schottenheimer getting inducted into the Chiefs Hall of fame undoubtedly makes me very happy. And the sight of him being honored in a game vs. the Raiders only motivates me to contribute to the celebration. That’s why, as a tribute to the man of the hour, I’m unveiling arguably the sweetest of all the memories that I have at my disposal (as well as one that I’m pretty positive the man from Pennsylvania cherishes fondly): The ’95 Chiefs-Raiders game that marked the first KC-Oakland game in 13 years, and that James Hasty ended with a pick-six of Jeff Hostetler in OT.

As you’re about to remember, Marty wanted this September 17th game badly for a trio of ex-Raiders (Art Shell, Marcus Allen and Gunther Cunningham), and a little help from the zebras helped him fulfill that wish – much to the chagrin of Tim Brown, and in spite of Lin Elliot. So good is the reminiscence that I couldn’t resist going all out in presenting the various angles that I captured on that day, and for that reason is that I bring you an special triple feature in which you will not only savor – not once but twice – one of the greatest moments in Chiefs’ history (while being guided by Chris Berman and Dan Patrick), but you’ll also understand why I developed such a huge crush on Lesley Visser (just listen to her saying “Take that back to Oakland, you’re still the Raiders” in quoting Neil Smith) that very afternoon.

Please enjoy it. Especially, because I know Marty would.

Three Hours From Playoffs … Game-Day Cup O’Chiefs

The “p” word has been everywhere around the Chiefs in the last week. It’s there when they go out in the community. It’s there when the media invades the locker room. It’s there when they turn on TV to watch ESPN.

The words – Chiefs and playoffs – are in the same sentence continually and that’s a good thing, unless you are head coach Todd Haley. He says his thoughts have not gone beyond what happens on Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium. That’s when the Chiefs and Oakland Raiders finish off the regular season. Kickoff is 12 noon and the TV broadcast is on CBS, with Spero Dedes and Randy Cross handling the broadcast.

That’s why Haley says that his team will play out this relatively meaningless game just like they did the 15 that came before. Rest players for the playoffs? What playoffs?

“The stage we’re in we’re still in the developing foundation-laying period for this team,” Haley said. “There are some teams that can think like that, I don’t think we’re one of those teams, I know we’re not. We just have so much work still to be done.” …Read More!

Marty vs. Raiders, One More Time

It is oh so appropriate that the Chiefs saved the moment for honoring their most recent addition to the team’s Hall of Fame for this Sunday.

Who is should be playing at Arrowhead Stadium when Marty Schottenheimer is inducted as the 40th member of the Chiefs Hall? It’s none other than his favorite opponent – the Raiders.

There is not another team that juiced Marty the way the silver and black did. Whether he was coaching the Browns, Chiefs, Redskins or Chargers, he lived to beat the hated Raiders. If Darth Raider himself is in the stadium on Sunday, the mere whiff of Schottenheimer scent will be enough to make Al Davis lose his lunch.

Here’s how it breaks down over Marty’s 21 seasons as a head coach against the Raiders: …Read More!

Fiesta Bowl – Connecticut vs. Oklahoma

  • Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
  • University of Phoenix Stadium/Glendale, Arizona
  • Saturday/7:30 p.m. on ESPN


Best prospect: #8 OLB Lawrence Wilson, 6-0¾, 226 pounds, 4.63 seconds, Redshirt-Senior – A first-team All-Big East defensive selection for the second consecutive season, Wilson led the Huskies in the ’10 season with 115 tackles. He the BCS clinching victory over South Florida, he returned an interception 55 yards for his team’s only touchdown in a 19-16 victory. Over his 51-game career, he had 441 total tackles, 35.5 tackles for loss, 9.5 sacks, five interceptions, including two that he ran back for touchdowns and nine passes broken up. …Read More!

Rose Bowl – Wisconsin vs. TCU

  • Rose Bowl by Vizio/Rose Bowl/Pasadena, CA
  • Saturday/4 p.m. on ESPN


Best prospect: #68 OT Gabe Carimi, 6-6 ½, 327 pounds, 5.12 seconds, Redshirt-Senior – The most honored offensive linemen in the 2010 season, as he was named the Outland Trophy winner and the Big-Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year. Carimi replaced Joe Thomas at left tackle and has now started 48 games for the Badgers, including 32 in a row. This year, Wisconsin is 12th in the country in rushing and have given up just 12 sacks. He missed three games in ’08 with an MCL sprain, but otherwise has been on the field. Carimi is considered one of the best pass blocking tackles to come out of college football in some time. …Read More!

Early New Year’s Day Bowl Prospects-Part 2

In the four early New Year’s Day bowl games there are a lot of NFL prospects that should be of interest to the Chiefs come April’s 2011 NFL Draft.

We covered the best seniors in the draft class, and those underclassmen who appear to be headed to the pros.

Here are a few other players that are not first-second round picks, but are players that on paper appear to fill potential holes in the Chiefs roster.


Florida – #76 OT Marcus Gilbert, 6-5, 320 pounds, 5.23 seconds, Redshirt-Senior – Gilbert has played at both left and right tackle during his time with the Gators, but most of that time has been on the right side. On either side, this is a talented young man, who could also move inside to play guard. He has quick feet and uses them both in pass protection and in the running game. He can pull and trap and he’s got the quickness to get to the second level. Versatile, durable and Gilbert has all the other intangibles. He is the son of a retired Secret Service agent. …Read More!


2011 Senior Bowl
Chiefs Players
College football
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Cup O'Chiefs
Draft 2010
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