Watching the Monday Night Football matchup of the New England Patriots at the Kansas City Chiefs, Chiefs fans experienced excitement and optimism as the Chiefs took an early 3-0 lead over the Patriots with Tyler Palko leading the Chiefs at quarterback.
That excitement and optimism soon turned to the usual feeling of pessimistic despair as the Patriots took the lead and never looked back, scoring 34 straight points to win 34-3, while forcing Chiefs fans to remember why Tyler Palko has been cut from every professional football league he has ever played in, including the Canadian Football League and the United Football League. Palko was intercepted three times.
The desperate despair once again turned to optimism for many Chiefs fans on Wednesday, as the Chiefs signed recently released Denver Broncos quarterback, Kyle Orton off the waiver wire.
While there are many critics of Orton, his signing by the Chiefs shows fans a few positive signs about the organization as a whole:
- The team cares about competing, even though the season is lost. To me, this is a huge step forward for the stingy-with-the-cash owner Clark Hunt. In the past, Hunt wouldn’t have spent an extra nickel. Orton was not given a contract for 2012, and will be paid $6+ million in 2012, if the Chiefs, or any team is to sign him.
- The Chiefs plan to be more aggressive in the offense. Kyle Orton has a big arm and loves to throw deep… Just ask Brandon Marshall and Brandon Lloyd if you do not believe me. It was Kyle Orton who turned both of these WRs into some of the NFL’s elites (partially Jay Cutler with Marshall). Dwayne Bowe is already among the best WRs in the NFL, a legit fear of the deep-ball will only make Bowe better. Overall, I do not see Orton as a huge upgrade over Matt Cassel at QB, they’re essentially the same guy, except Orton has a much better arm, yet turns the ball over more often.
- Orton is a former member of two remaining Chiefs opponents: Chicago Bears and Denver Broncos. Orton’s presence on the roster alone, give the Chiefs a better chance to compete. Out of Denver, head coach Jon Fox has said he doesn’t plan to re-work the play calling, this means Orton is a HUGE asset against the Denver Broncos on New Year’s Day.
On to the reasons the Steelers could beat the Chiefs…
Tyler Palko… Or whoever the QB will be…
Ok, Palko backers… You finally got your wish. Palko threw up three picks. I know, they were not all his fault, but when looking back, nobody will remember that fact!
Now we all know why Palko has been released from every team he has played for professionally.
Many fans are calling for Ricky Stanzi to get a shot while newly acquired QB, Kyle Orton, gets acclimated to the Chiefs offense… I hope you get your wish… This way the Stanzi talk can end as quickly as the Palko talk did.
Adam Meckler, Nice Pick Cowher (@NicePickCowher on Twitter): The Chiefs are in transition mode with Palko behind center, and haven’t really been the team people thought they would be this season. My guess is that the Steelers will go to the air early this week, as we’ve seen them do more consistently lately, and look to put this game out of reach early. Of course, the Steelers have made a habit of keeping it close with teams they “should” beat, so you never know.
The Bye Week: Rape Hand Recovery
Awww… That’s a low-blow! Ya, I know, but that’s how it is. The Steelers are coming off a bye week and Ben Roethlisberger is not expected to miss any time due to the injury to his throwing hand thumb. Ben is one of the toughest QBs in the NFL to take to the ground and the Chiefs have a hard time pressuring the QB. Roethlisberger makes plays, despite a very weak O-line. Sunday could be a very long day for the Chiefs D.
Adam Meckler: The Steelers are coming off a bye week, and should be feeling the added pressure to win consistently now that the Ravens beat the Bengals last week. This puts the Ravens slightly ahead of the Steelers in the hunt and if they don’t win out, they likely have no chance at winning the division. Though, the Ravens have proved me wrong before.
Steelers Run D, AKA Lack of Chiefs Rushing Attack
Now, these two things aren’t really the same thing, but the Chiefs don’t seem to care about establishing a running game anymore. Instead, they line up McCluster at RB while Chiefs fan are left in fear he will fumble the ball… And we’re told by the “experts” that McCluster MUST be in the backfield frequently, so the defense doesn’t know EXACTLY what is coming when he enters the game in receiving situations. Refusing to establish a rushing attack is the BIGGEST problem with this Chiefs offense, and it is not one that will be remedied against the Steelers’ #6 rush defense.
Kraig Riley, Producer: Seibel, Starkey & Miller Show, 93.7 The FAN in Pittsburgh (@KraigRiley on Twitter): The Chiefs don’t establish a running game. The Steelers trademark run stuffing defense appears to be a thing of the past, and with an inexperienced Quarterback in Tyler Palko, getting the run game going early will be all the more important for the Chiefs chances. Running against this aging Steelers defense will also help open things up late in the game, and the Steelers tend to let teams hang around longer than they should, giving the Chiefs a chance to be in it late.
Antonio Brown is becoming a star
With the rapid decline in production of former Super Bowl MVP, Hines Ward, and the drop in production in the past few years of TE Heath Miller, the Steelers have needed a second option in the passing game to compliment Mike Wallace… It seems they have found that compliment in Antonio Brown.
Kraig Riley: Brown is quickly becoming Ben Roethlisberger’s favorite target, and teams have yet to take this into account when game planning. Brown has only caught one touchdown this year which doesn’t strike fear into teams, but it’s what he does in the middle of the field and on critical third downs that the Chiefs will need to concern themselves with. With Hines Ward’s career winding down, Brown has become the guy that finds the soft spots in zones or runs that quick slant on third downs and keeps drives alive.
It’s not even close!
Does anyone really think the Chiefs have a chance to win this game? Similar to week 11 on Monday Night Football against the Patriots, the Steelers have the Chiefs outmatched in nearly every single area of the game!
Thanks to Rich Walsh, Sports Anchor/Reporter WPXI TV NBC Pittsburgh (@RichieWalsh on Twitter), for a true fan-type resonse… It is rare for the opponent’s sports personalities to give it to us real!
1. If the Steelers bus shows up to Arrowhead
2. If Ben Roethlisberger breaks his OTHER thumb
3. If Tyler Palko mistakes Ike Taylor as a WR
More serious… If Ben doesn’t turn the ball over, the Steelers win OR If Steelers Defense holds Palko to under 200 yards passing.
My Chiefs v. Steelers Prediction
With the spread currently at Steelers -10 1/2, I don’t think the Chiefs cover the spread…
Kansas City Chiefs 10 – Pittsburgh Steelers 39
10 points from the Chiefs may be too high…
What are your thoughts on the game? Let us know in the comments section below!