An 0-2 start has the knives out for Scott Pioli in K.C.
The Chiefs got some notice in preseason playoff predictions, including the ones handed in by this writer for this website, in large part because it looked like they had a good defense.
Sunday’s 35-17 loss to the Bills left some egg on this face (even if leaving the Saints out of the playoffs feels better at this hour) and it left the Chiefs with 68 points allowed through the first two weeks of the season. Even the most optimistic Chiefs supporters have to admit that they don’t have the offense to win games if their defense is getting gashed like that on a regular basis.
Kent Babb of the Kansas City Star is convinced they aren’t going to win much at all as long as Scott Pioli is the General Manager. Babb penned a wicked takedown of Pioli in the aftermath of the lopsided loss to the Bills and writes that “the Chiefs will never win big while Pioli is this team’s boss.” Babb crushes Pioli’s managerial style, his drafting, his support of quarterback Matt Cassel and, overwhelmingly, his desire to protect his own job over doing the right things for the team.
“Now in his fourth season as GM, Pioli has spent too much time trying to justify his decisions, rather than trying to improve them,” Babb writes. “He whines to outsiders that the Chiefs’ salary-cap shortcomings are misunderstood? Well, spend more money, as team chairman Clark Hunt has said Pioli is authorized to do. Pioli excuses himself for his biggest mistakes, such as saying he just didn’t do his homework before hiring former coach Todd Haley? Well, why not? And he says privately that drafting a quarterback in the early rounds isn’t the point; it’s about drafting the right one. Well, Scott, then draft the right one. These things are big parts of Pioli’s job, but instead of acknowledging that, he chooses to tell himself — and, through back channels, you — that things are just fine.”
There’s a lot more where that came from and the whole thing is worth a read unless you’re a Chiefs fan trying not to spend all of Monday feeling frustrated by the direction of the team. The Chiefs are definitely a better team than they were when Pioli got to town. The first two games have made a compelling argument that they still aren’t good enough to compete at the highest levels, however, and they suggest that things might be trending in the wrong direction overall.
If things don’t turn around in a hurry, like next week in the Superdome against an 0-2 Saints team, Babb, who is leaving for a job at the Washington Post in the near future, isn’t going to be the only one calling for heads to roll in Kansas City.