Mark it down. I’m not mincing words. I AM the greatest football predictor in the history of predicting football, and here is my bold, completely thought-out and aggressively accurate assertion about this year’s Kansas City Chiefs: THEY WILL WIN THE SUPER BOWL.
Jamall Charles will rush for 3,000+ yards, Matt Castle will win the MVP and throw 82 touchdowns passes, and Dewayne Bowes will receive 218 passes and be elected as our nation’s first black president in this November’s upcoming election.
And so it shall be, as the Fake Scribe has spoken.
LOLZ! INTERNET JOKES, Y’ALL!!!
All right, but for real, it’s the preseason, and the preseason is awful. There is no possible way you can truly gauge the gameday competency—or incompetency—of a team. It just doesn’t make sense.
Players are getting their footing, they’re still working out the kinks, dudes are playing against dudes who will be working as landscapers in six weeks, people are going at half speed.
So, yeah… garbage, really.
But there are some takeaways. Like the food reviews of the late, great Reid Jolly (just kidding—he’s not dead… I don’t think…probably), there are ALWAYS takeaways. Here were some observations I made while watching this never-ending, long-form practice.
- The first team KC offense looked good against the first team Cardinals’ defense. Now that’s not saying a TON—the Cardinals’ defense was below average last year in most measurable categories—but considering what an anemic, disappointing offense the Chiefs routinely displayed in 2011, it was refreshing, nonetheless.
Matt Cassel looked energized and enthused and, well, didn’t fuck up. And really, that’s the key to Cassel’s success: not getting in his own way. He kept it simple and in doing so, found an efficiency that mirrored his better performances from 2010.
- We also witnessed the triumphant return of the Tres ACL Amigos, and it looked encouraging. Jamaal Charles, who stood to suffer the most long-term negative repercussions from last season’s injury, had 3 carries for 12 yards, plus an 11 yard reception. And he made cuts… not blistering, shake-you-outta-your-shoes-cuts, but come on, it’s the preseason. Nobody does that. But he looked healthy. And his workload will be made infinitely easier because of:
Peyton Hillis. If Hillis can stay healthy—and refrain from succumbing to the mysterious “maladies” that plagued the end of his stay in Cleveland—the Chiefs could have a very serious one-two punch. All Hillis did was carry the ball 4 times for 41 yards, and catch an eleven yard touchdown pass. That’s not to say ol’ Meat Neck did it all by himself. He had help from:
- A new and improved offensive line, led gloriously into battle by new right-tackle Eric Winston. The O-Line, which went from the best in the league to simply the oldest, before morphing into a young, talentless, disappointing one—all within the span of a few seasons—finally seems to be making strides. I loved the Winston pickup when it happened, and I have a good feeling I’ll be loving it all throughout the season.
But the real story, the one that everyone came to see play out under the bright lights at One Arrowhead Drive, was the battle for the backup quarterback spot. Former first-round draft pick Brady Quinn looked Quinn-essentially Brady Quinn-like (see what I did there? That’s called “taking a Urich.”). He was pedestrian, and he did nothing to win the backup spot. His completion percentage was just a shade over 50, which is correspondent with his career figure. He also threw an interception (which, one could argue, wasn’t entirely his fault).
Meanwhile, I finally realized what Ricky Stanzi is good at: he’s a really, really pretty lady. In fact, I’ve no doubt that no matter what happens throughout the rest of this preseason, he WILL be elected Homecoming Queen, goddamnit, and Brady Quinn will make a handsome King. (Seriously, Stanzi. Cut your fucking hair. Your parents are SO sad right now, bro.)
Luke Hochevar is still horrible, and as long as he’s continually being anointed the ace of this staff, the Royals don’t stand a chance at a post-season berth. He’s maddeningly inconsistent, which is the worst part. He lulls you into a false sense of hope and security with three average to slightly-above-average starts in a row, and then he takes a gigantic dump all over the mound by giving up 7 runs to the Baltimore Orioles.
- Screw the Royals, and especially Luke Hochevar. Let’s celebrate the winners, instead. Winners like Steve Maneri, who went from being a doughy offensive lineman in 2011, to a svelte, sure-handed tight-end prospect in 2012. He dropped 45 pounds this off season by NOT eating Applebee’s “Two for $20” by himself (seriously—this was on the broadcast), and is returning to his high school and college position. Last night, he had 3 catches for 69 (HA!!!) yards including a crucial 19-yard grab in the 4th that set up a touchdown run by:
Cyrus Gray. Gray looked good: 65 yards rushing on 15 attempts, and the aforementioned TD. Plus, HIS NAME IS CYRUS GRAY. That’s some serious, old-school, black-dude shit right there, you guys. Do you think I could get away with naming my son Cyrus? Would that work? I need to figure this out. I will procreate SOLELY for the purpose of naming my child Cyrus. He has to be born black, though, which could be tricky because both my wife and I are whiter than the back of a leprechaun’s knee. But over on the other sideline:
- Jesus, it must suck to be a Cardinals fan. You run out and sign the hot, young (mostly unproven) gunslinger to take the place of your departing Hall of Fame QB, only to find out that the hot, young QB is actually pretty shitty. That wreck of an investment then finds himself in a battle for the starter’s job against John Skelton, a real NFL player (!) who has a career QB rating of 66.9. Meanwhile, one of this era’s most gifted receivers is sitting there like, “oh, shit… is this for real?” while his braids grow ever greyer.
Somewhere, a Seattle Seahawks fan is sitting quietly, staring at a poster of Matt Flynn that has been carefully tacked to the wall. It won’t happen to us, he vows, his clammy, Pacific Northwestern hand gripping tighter on his coffee mug.
And in brief:
- The replacement refs looked awful and unsure on almost every call. They seemed to have about the same average of accuracy as the normal officials, but they looked like my mom every time they tried to explain a penalty. It was awkward, and I felt a little uncomfortable watching it.
- Analyst Trent Green stated that Dontari Poe was, “a biscuit away from 360 (lbs),” which I thought was pretty outstanding.
- I was mortified to learn that I am now older that EVERY SINGLE PLAYER on the Chiefs’ roster. I am 31.