The Kansas City Chiefs have only had back-to-back winning seasons once since former head coach Marty Schottenheimer was let go after the 1998 season. Schottenheimer put together nine straight winning seasons during his 10-year tenure in Kansas City.
In an effort to return to the level of consistent winning that the Chiefs enjoyed during the Schottenehimer era and accomplish something Schottenheimer wasn’t able to do which is win a Super Bowl, the Chiefs brought in general manager Scott Pioli from the New England Patriots.
The Patriots have been very successful over the past 11 years but their most successful period was during the time Pioli was there. They won three championships in four years and even went to the Super Bowl a fourth time before Pioli left to join the Chiefs’ organization.
So Pioli should have a firm understanding of what it takes to build and sustain a winner. Or does he?
I only ask that because Pioli has yet to address the biggest area of need for this team and that is the quarterback position.
What have been the two constants in the Patriot’s success over the past 11 years? The answer is Bill Belichick and Tom Brady.
Assistant coaches have come and gone as well as players both on offense and defense but through it all New England has always had Belichick and Brady to keep them afloat.
While Brady did miss one year with a knee injury and Matt Cassel was able to lead the Patriots to an 11-5 season, Cassel is not the answer in Kansas City.
Head coach Romeo Crennel may be the kind of coach to build a winning organization with though. The Patriots went to the Super Bowl five times over the past 11 years and Crennel was the defensive coordinator there during their three wins.
While Brady and the Patriot’s offense have shown it can win consistently during the regular season, New England has had difficulties scoring at times during the post season. If Crennel had remained in New England they may have went to and won more championships.
As the old saying goes, “Offense sells tickets but defense wins championships.” Crennel has a great mind for devising defensive schemes that will stop or at least slow down opponents.
Just look at what he did against the Green Bay Packers last season. They were undefeated until they stepped into Arrowhead Stadium and had to face Crennel’s stifling defense.
Now imagine how good the Chiefs could be if they had a top-notch signal-caller on the offensive side of the ball. If Crennel and Pioli are to have any longevity in Kansas City and succeed in bringing Patriots-like success to the Chiefs’ organization then they will need to somehow acquire a big time quarterback.
Yeah I know that’s easier said than done but they have to get it done somehow. Look at the quarterbacks that have successfully led their teams to Super Bowl wins over the last 20 years.
Eli Manning (twice), Payton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger (twice), Drew Brees, Tom Brady (three times), Kurt Warner, Brett Favre, John Elway (twice), Steve Young, Troy Aikman (three times) and Aaron Rodgers all led their teams to at least one championship.
Some of those players like Elway, Payton Manning, Roethlisberger, Brady, Favre and Warner took their teams to the Super Bowl on other occasions that they didn’t win.
But the constant in it all is that an elite quarterback consistently puts you in position to win championships. That is with a little help from the defense of course.
And the Chiefs won’t be able to fully develop that culture of winning without a top-shelf quarterback leading the way. The sooner Pioli addresses that, the better.
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Roosevelt Hall is an NFL Blogger for The Sport Mentalist and an NBA Blogger for The Sport Mentalist 2. He is also a Sports Reporter for Pro Sports Lives. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to follow him on Twitter @sportmentalist.
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