What a weekend! I got to watch Andrew Luck take on my Huskies, the World Series and, now, I will see a showdown between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Oakland Raiders at the Black Hole. It sounds like we will not know if Carson Palmer is going to play today until game time but, either way, the Chiefs are going to see a lot of Darren McFadden.
I am pleased to be back rooting for the Chiefs. This feels like a real Raiders week but there are a couple of elements that have elevated this game to a greater intensity than is usual despite the team’s efforts to treat this like it is any other game. I am alright with the business-like approach this Chiefs organization clearly has but the Raider-hating Marty Schottenheimer days were fun as well.
What I do not like right now is the fact that Jonathan Baldwin may not be in the game and I really don’t think there is any excuse for it. This is why I am going to hold the Chiefs’ special teams accountable for making sure that Jacoby Ford does not take it to the house. The trade-off taking place seems to be keeping Jeremy Horne or Keary Colbert active in place the first round pick for their special teams abilities. It better be enough because the time for the Chiefs to integrate Baldwin in the offense was two weeks ago. If Todd Haley really is Mr. Wideout Developer, why is Baldwin, who has so much talent, not on the field yet?
Suck For Luck Corner
You thought Suck For Luck was over, didn’t you? For the Chiefs, it is. The Chiefs are going to finish out the season valiantly and then they are going to trade two firsts and two thirds. That’s what I believe though it is as far fetched as the Chiefs making the playoffs at this point in time.
There are some teams that are in Suck For Luck mode and I do not blame them for a minute. Here is a list of the teams in S4L formation and the Indianapolis Colts and the St. Louis Rams did not make said list:
Denver Broncos: Tim Tebow is starting at quarterback now and all will be solved for the Broncos, right? Except for the fact that the team wants him to fail because the prize idiot who convinced the Broncos front office to draft the godlike Gator is gone and a real legend, John Elway, would like nothing more than Tebow to fail to demonstrate to the fans that Tebow is not Jesus after all and then he will draft Andrew Luck to usher in a fellow Stanford Cardinal alma mater into the Broncos blue and orange and rid the franchise of this Tebow nonsense. You better believe they are sucking for Luck and they are doing as I would do if I were at the controls in Denver because Tim Tebow makes a great gimmick QB and would make a decent NFL tight end. Keep running, Tim. See how long that lasts.
Minnesota Vikings: Donovan McNabb is all but done as an NFL quarterback and he had quite a career but now it is Christian Ponder’s turn. You probably already know the problem. Ponder was quite a reach in this year’s draft and the Vikings like their prospects of getting a chance for a rookie QB upgrade. We’ve seen what they are and it’s not good. Might be a good move to make Luck the next Purple Jesus.
Miami Dolphins: Yeah, they’re in full S4L mode. We know this.
Jacksonville Jaguars: They are in Suck Mode but, if I were Luck, I would pull a John Elway or a Wee-li Manning move and decide not to play there. That is, unless he wants to wait until they move to Los Angeles.
Death Of A Shade Of A Hue
I am really excited for this game. I still do not have high aspirations for the Chiefs chances for the rest of the season but we will be watching something so rare for a league that offers new sights and experiences on weekly basis. A quarterback that was not in practice at the beginning of the week will be starting for the Oakland Raiders and squaring off against a fellow USC quarterback playing for a team on the other side of the field. This game is a complete black box if you will pardon the expression but I really believe this game should turn the Chiefs’ way.
I doubt Carson Palmer pans out for the Raiders but, even if he does, how well could any quarterback do with only a couple of practices with his new team. I know he has been working out here and there but not working out with an NFL team only gets you so far. Just ask the Chiefs about their preseason. The whole deal seemed to have happened because Hue Jackson wanted it to happen. I think it was more of a calculated move to get Palmer than it seems but that is not a quarterback I would give that much money to. Palmer has the talent but, if I were Al Davis’ son, I would do all I can to make sure that the franchise was focused on the future. With the amount of draft picks they have left, it appears the Oakland Raiders will be ran by a Ouija board.
The Raiders have some scary good weapons. They have a strong running game, a stout defensive line and a coach that is not mentally ill. One weapon they may not have, though, is Sebastian Janikowski. This game seemed like a loss for the Chiefs before the season began but I really think the Chiefs should win this game as of today. I don’t know if we will really know the full scope of Al Davis’ reign but it is clear he has left his mark despite his death. I know when my beloved Chicago Blackhawks lost their owner, Bill Wirtz, in 2007, I threw a party and the Blackhawks became a winning organization immediately, hoisting the Stanley Cup three years later. With the Raiders, they may have no change in the works and as a Chiefs fan, I am not complaining.
The Chiefs are well-rested, they will have game planned to face a stellar running game and will have also prepared to face a good passing game though they may never see it on this Sunday. This seems to be a must-win game for Todd Haley. It’s not but it seems like it. He doesn’t have to win it for you and I but with all the uncertainty that seems to be playing into the Chiefs’ hands and Haley’s choice to keep Baldwin out, I don’t know if Scott Pioli will tolerate a loss. I don’t think this team has playoff aspirations but if the Chiefs end up with the L at the end of the game after facing a rusty (or a really bad) quarterback after the Chiefs are fresh off of a bye week.
This is a big week for all the players and sectors of the team that received praise for the last two games. This is a real team (for the most part) and the Chiefs have yet to show they can beat a decent team. I worry about a certain left guard the Chiefs have that may not be able to handle the interior defensive line of the Oakland Raiders. I also think that the Chiefs’ defensive line may have their hands full as well. This is a test on many levels for the Chiefs and, though I have been burnt by this before this year, I think the team will be up to it.
I do not think the Chiefs will lose this game. I will be watching the game on my television (not a bar) as it is being televised in Seattle. This is Raider week and I am all in on this thing. The whole Pioli-Haley era has been about building an identity. You want an identity? Just win, baby!