It's time to lose for the future
By JASON WHITLOCK
DENVER | You hope this wasnít rock bottom.Seriously, you hope King Carl, Herm Edwards and the Chiefs have the decency and smarts to save their worst for last, for season-ending road trips to Detroit and New York.
This season can only end on a positive note if the Chiefs get a top-five draft pick out of it and a chance to nab tackle Jake Long or quarterbacks Matt Ryan and Brian Brohm.
Sundayís 41-7 loss to the Denver Broncos could be problematic. It was the kind of embarrassing, gutless performance that motivates players and coaches to finish the season with pride.
Edwards was angry Sunday. Irritated by the performance of his defense, Herm sounded feisty and prideful in his postgame comments. At one point, he nearly broke into his ďyou play to win the gameĒ mantra.
No. You play to win the Super Bowl. And when thatís not a legitimate goal, you play to make the playoffs. Once the playoffs are eliminated ó as they were on Sunday for the Chiefs ó you play to develop your players for next season.
Thatís where the Chiefs are now ó except they have a special circumstance. They canít develop Brodie Croyle, Kolby Smith or Dwayne Bowe because KCís offensive line is so bad that itís impossible to do anything worthwhile on offense.
When thatís the case, you play for draft position, and you hope the Chiefs can sink deeper than they did on Sunday inside Invesco Field at Mile High.
In losing their sixth straight, the Chiefs rushed for 16 yards in 17 carries, surrendered five sacks, punted eight times, allowed Denver 215 rushing yards and never touched Bronco quarterback Jay Cutler, who finished 20 of 27 passing for 244 yards and four touchdowns.
The Preacher will be preaching this week. Heís embarrassed. If heís going to lose a game, heíd prefer to lose in the fourth quarter after making everyone suffer through two hours of field-position football.
Denver ran away with this thing, jumping to a two-TD lead in the first quarter and cruising to a 24-7 halftime advantage.
ďOur strength is our defense, and we canít give up 14 points to start out the game and expect to win,Ē Edwards complained.
Right now there are five teams with worse records than the Chiefs ó Miami, 0-13, St. Louis, 3-10, San Francisco, 3-10, the Jets, 3-10 and Atlanta, 3-9. Oakland and Baltimore have the same 4-9 record as the Chiefs.
If the Chiefs take care of business, lose to Tennessee and Detroit, they could head to New York and take on the Jets for the right to draft as high as No. 4.
The key to losing out is packing it in mentally. Sundayís effort is just the kind of thing that could cause players to refocus.
ďItís not good. We didnít play well today. It seems like guys didnít show up today,Ē Tony Gonzalez grumbled. ďMaybe people were already in offseason mode. Maybe theyíre already back to their families, going back to Miami or wherever you go during the offseason. Itís sad. Itís frustrating. Weíve got three games left... Letís go play hard. Letís try to win. I donít care about the playoffs.Ē
I disagree. I loved every pass Dwayne Bowe and Kris Wilson dropped. It was great seeing Ty Law and Patrick Surtain get lit up like Christmas trees. Jared Allen has done more than enough this season to earn a major contract upgrade. He deserved the break he took on Sunday. Thereís no reason to waste a sack on the Broncos. And why not let a no-name back jam it right down your throat repeatedly?
You just hope they can do it three more times. We know bad offensive-line play is a given. On one of Croyleís five sacks, every lineman except Brian Waters got beat.
Honestly, Iím thinking about deducting points from my season-ending Chiefs grades from any player who tries to play hero down the stretch, especially if itís a veteran player. If Bobby Sippio makes a big play, Iím cool with it. But thereís no reason for an established veteran to do anything beyond go through the motions at this point.
Chiefs fans should do their part by skipping the Tennessee game. We all have a role to play in getting this team to 4-12.
In away he`s right. if the players can give on this year and since i did several games ago,go for the draft pick.