Game one of the preseason meant something. On that all agree. Both the players and fans felt it. That feeling is still alive.
Just a preseason game but it said a lot about the team. It spoke volumes about the coaching, players and attitude of the organization.
They want to win. Chiefs' chairman and CEO Clark Hunt wants to win.
"What I can say passionately is that I want to win a Super Bowl," says Clark Hunt. "It's been a long time since Kansas City has enjoyed the celebration that goes with winning a Super Bowl and I desperately want to win the Lamar Hunt Trophy and then the Vince Lombardi Trophy, which my dad named."
Fans can be tough.
Towards the end of the Carl Peterson era nothing was Chief holy, not even Lamar. Lamar Hunt was accused of filling seats and not caring. The same guy that created the AFL and led the NFL merger.
I didn't believe it then and I don't today, but people make mistakes. Sometimes folks don't get it right. Peterson tried, but left players Kansas City is winning with today.
What I saw Friday was a team led by Romeo Crennel working hard. Scott Pioli wants to make it right.
In a conversation with Pioli at St. Joe an elderly lady approached Pioli for his autograph. She complemented Pioli on a great job. Pioli thanked her took a kiss on the cheek but reminded her that the Chiefs need to win.
Pioli's right, that's the true measurement – winning.
Despite the gamut of players Friday the concept remained the same: consistency. I say that again, the Chiefs were consistent. Regular has eluded Kansas City.
They looked reliable and steady. Kansas City played like a football team.
In one preseason game fans saw everything that was absent. Not trying to beat a guy after he's gone, but Crennel's doing with a young team what Todd Haley couldn't.
The missing link was Romeo Crennel…the professor.
Romeo with his look makes fans think of a professor
It was cool having an owner, new general manager and head coach that were young. All three Clark Hunt, Pioli and Haley are in their 40s. A young manager to manage a young team. Right? Wrong, youth needs wisdom.
I believe Kansas City just needed the right nudge by the right coach. Today the Chiefs have players who know the drill; they're experienced and turning heads. There are no more dog houses for Derrick Johnson or sitting on the bench.
Kansas City has players taking care of themselves. Many have matured since 2008 and are tutoring the young guys. That's how successful teams like the New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers do it, that’s how a dynasty maintains. Players help grow players to eventually replace players, but you need good players to start with.
Once the process feeds itself coaches facilitate and fill in the blanks where needed.
Like a drought Kansas City lost everything. Good players left, leaders went away and KC lost their 1990 identity. The well went dry for Carl Peterson.
Against the Arizona Cardinals the shelves looked stocked, leaders showed up and ones in charge looked serious about winning.
I watched the first preseason game feeling like the Chiefs were in good hands with Crennel.
To other teams it might be just preseason. No big deal if their team doesn't do well or their starters don't show up. They'll figure it out, it'll get ironed out. Things Chief fans would tell each other.
Chief fans needed Friday like no other.
Jamaal Charles talked about the right start and opening strong after the game against Arizona. Charles said they have to keep it going for the regular season. I agree!
I never understood why preseason never means more to others. Haley never treated it as such. Kansas City especially needed the springboard. It's a new beginning, or at least it feels that away.
Crennel's treating everything as important and it showed.
Good day, Chiefs fans!