Right now, about the only thing not wrong with the Kansas City Chiefs is you, the fans who wear red on Fridays, fill up Arrowhead Stadium on Sundays and call radio talk shows on Monday to gripe.
Absolutely everything else about your favorite football team is an utter mess ó from the quarterback situation to the unsightly renovation to the unexciting style of play to Carl Petersonís continued employment hovering over the franchise like a very dark cloud.
It always comes back to Carl with me. You and Carl are the two constants throughout all of this. And youíve done your job far better than Peterson.
No one can question your loyalty or passion for the Chiefs. Youíve given Peterson and the Hunt family 20 years of faith, the last half of it being the blind variety.
And now, with our economy in the toilet, high gas prices and your childrenís college savings in jeopardy, your tax dollars are financing a major overhaul of Arrowhead and Kauffman stadiums.
Yeah, youíve carried your load. Youíve been the most valuable player for the Chiefs and the Royals since Marty Schottenheimer was bounced and the Royals ran Hal McRae out of town.
And what has been your return?
On the football field, itís been half-baked teams that embarrassed you at playoff time with their inability to score points under Marty and play defense under Dick Vermeil. Herm Edwardsí team can do neither.
After Sundayís 34-0 thrashing by the Carolina Panthers, there is no reason to deny the obvious: The payoff for two decades of rule by Peterson is the worst team in franchise history ó a team without a promising quarterback, a youthful, dynamic assistant-coaching staff or much of a foundation for success.
Wine is the only thing I can think of that doesnít go stale after 20 years. You cannot credibly argue that Carl Peterson has a plan to lift the Chiefs from their current hellhole.
His lone sure-fire plan is to reach deeper into your pockets. Youíve already been told/warned about what you will be required to pay to sit in those shiny new seats and suites at the renovated Arrowhead Stadium.
Even for very good seats, the increases are astonishing and foreshadow parking-price and concession escalations that could make a family-of-four, club-level-seats trip to see Petersonís Chiefs max out around $1,300.
Youíve done enough, and youíll soon be required to do more.
The Lions fired Matt Millen after seven years. The Rams dumped their coach and are shaking up their front office. OK, thereís no guarantee the Lions or Rams will be better than the Chiefs in the near future.
What it does signal is that there is a demand for improvement from their ownership and fan base.
By failing to voice your displeasure, youíre inviting Clark Hunt to take seriously the succession plan Peterson and his flunkies have been cooking up.
My read from discussions over the past year with Chiefs employees is that Peterson would like to hang on to his CEO/president title and elevate Bill Kuharich to general manager and Denny Thum to some sort of associate president role. Kuharich would be in charge of all personnel decisions, Thum would be in charge of the salary cap and Peterson would continue to milk the Hunts for a fat paycheck.
In other words, absolutely nothing would change.
The theory they want you to believe is that Kuharich and Herm work beautifully together in identifying young talent. The Chiefs allegedly have had marvelous back-to-back drafts. Dick Vermeilís drafts were embarrassingly bad.
Vermeil and his personnel sidekick, Lynn Stiles, were George Bush and Dick Cheney, and Herm and Kuharich are Barack Obama and Joe Biden, change we can believe in.
The reality is One Arrowhead Drive has never been a democracy under Peterson.
I know many of you desperately want me to trash Herm Edwards and his coaching staff. You think Iím too easy on Herm. Iím not. Herm and his washed-up coaching staff are irrelevant.
The Chiefs will not move forward until Peterson is removed.
I donít believe the Chiefs can be a player in the Bill Cowher sweepstakes with Peterson still in power.
Maybe Iím wrong and a record contract will lure Cowher to work for the man Marty bickered with the second half of his KC tenure. But it would make no sense for Hunt to saddle Cowher with Petersonís baggage. You would think that Herm and Marty would counsel Cowher to avoid that.
And with Peterson in office, the Chiefs certainly have no shot at landing New Englandís front-office guru Scott Pioli, Bill Belichickís right-hand man. Pioli is ready to get out from underneath Belichickís shadow and run his own franchise. He would be a terrific hire for the Chiefs.
Peterson is holding your franchise hostage. Youíve heard me make this rant before. Iím going to keep making it until something gets done.
Just in case you don't feel like linking to it. I really like this one.