Warpaint Roundtable: Road Woes Continue

In this edition of the Roundtable, we talk about the road nightmares, the snub and our predictions on the Chiefs final 2010 record.

Why is it that we can't seem to win any games away from Arrowhead, yet last season three of our four wins came on the road?

Nick Athan: That's a great question. Last year the road wins at Washington, Oakland, and Denver came against three teams that were all suffering through losing streaks of some kind. At the time the Chiefs played them, each team was ripe for a loss. And in the teams' first pair of road games, they weren't decided until the final series. In Denver, the Chiefs routed the Broncos, similar to what happened this past Sunday.

To be honest, in my view the loss at Houston was a setback that this team hasn't been able to shake. Losing at Indy was difficult, but the team played well. In Houston they had the game well in hand and then let it slip away. Had they won that game, they'd have likely defeated the Raiders a couple of weeks ago.

This team just doesn't have enough players, at least not yet, that understand you need to make a single play at a given point in the game that can change the outcome. When that happens then this team will start winning again on the road.

C.E. Wendler: The answer is fairly simple - the Chiefs are facing much tougher competition on the road this year. Last season, the Chiefs bested the Raiders and Redskins on the road, and both squads were terrible. Their third win, over Denver, is something of an aberration. Chalk it up the Broncos simply choking horribly - they had everything on the line - and the Chiefs playing with house money, having nothing to lose.

The other factor may be that the Chiefs aren't sneaking up on anyone this year. After their 3-0 start, they had a huge bull's-eye on their backs. They haven't handled that well.

Josh Scotten: Arrowhead has been electric in 2010 and the Chiefs faithful should give themselves a pat on the back for willing this team to some victories that---quit honestly---probably shouldn't have happened (i.e. San Diego and Buffalo). Leaving that comfort of home, and heading into hostile environments like Oakland may just be a bit too much for these young guys at this point in their careers.

Give ‘em time though, they'll get it turned around.

Michael Ash: It's mainly a question of the opponents. They've just played stiffer competition than they did in their road wins last year. And keep in mind that, by all rights, the Chiefs should have won at both Houston and Oakland, which would make their road record a lot more impressive than it is.

When they become a better team, they'll start holding onto those wins instead of letting them slip away. But for now, they're just not a team that's going to go on the road and beat decent teams, and their road schedule isn't as soft as it was a year ago.

What happened to the defense on Sunday? Was it just about the extra preparation Denver had, or the injuries at safety? Or was it something bigger than that?

Nick Athan: They simply aren't flying to the ball the way they did through the first six games of the season. They aren't blessed with a great deal of team speed. However, they do have athletes. At Denver, the deep secondary was simply overmatched. And the fact the team couldn't generate a pass rush led to most of their failures on Sunday.

This team doesn't have a superstar defensive player. They have one pass rusher, an outside linebacker, Tamba Hali. He can't do it all. In the last two weeks, he's been double teamed to the point he's become mostly ineffective. That means someone else needs to step up. The only player who has is safety Eric Berry. When Romeo Crennel unleashes his first round talent, he generally makes things happen.

Soft coverage from KC's corners has contributed more to the defensive failures than any other factor.
Getty Images



C.E. Wendler: Even good defenses get taken out behind the woodshed a few times a season. That's just the NFL, and the law of averages, playing out. And yes, playing a third-string safety had something to do with it. The Chiefs are so thin on defense one injury anywhere is going to have a huge impact.

I wouldn't worry too much about it. The only times the Chiefs have looked really bad on defense this year came against elite passing games. Of course, that just spells out the need for a quarterback who can respond in kind when his defense has an off day. Right now the Chiefs clearly don't have that kind of quarterback.

Josh Scotten: Make no mistake about it Sunday was Denver's Super Bowl party. Bronco's Head coach Josh McDaniels had his guys ready to bring the hammer down on the Chiefs.

Looking deeper the rotation of the Chiefs safeties played a big role in the defensive struggles the last two weeks. Add that with the fact the front seven can't rush the passer, you can see why the Chiefs lost against the Broncos. Lucky for the Chiefs, Crennel has the guru like ability to make this happen but he has to unleash the reigns a bit. To this point, he has yet to show the willingness to consistently do that.

Michael Ash: As long as it doesn't become a trend, I don't think it's a sign of something bigger. Only three times this season have the Chiefs given up more than 20 points – one came in overtime, and only by a field goal, and the other two were against high-octane passing games in Houston and Denver.

With the Chiefs only having one pass rusher of note, you have to expect them to struggle against the good passing teams. If Arizona and their 30th ranked passing game comes out Sunday and lights up the scoreboard, then there's something wrong. But for now, I'd say the Denver game was just a bad day for a defense that had a major hole in the secondary.

What are your thoughts on Haley's handshake snub?

Nick Athan: Loved it! I thought it was a brilliant move to take the heat off his players. The Chiefs were embarrassed so badly that all Haley could do was develop a strategy to make sure the focus after the game was not on his football team. Thus, he took the brunt of the 49-29 loss – not for what happened during the game, but after it.

It's Friday and we're still talking about. I'd say it was a shrewd and calculated move. And if it was planned, it worked to perfection. It also set the tone for the rematch in a few weeks.

Haley's snub was perfectly executed and calculated.
Getty Images



C.E. Wendler: I loved it. It was entertaining as hell. Every foul-mouthed tirade Haley launched last season was hilarious. I enjoyed each and every one of them, and I'm not even trying to be funny when I say I miss Haley's sideline rants.

Unfortunately, it's also highly unprofessional. Haley looked childish. I'm sure Clark Hunt wasn't too happy with it.

Josh Scotten: This rivalry needed an injection of piss n' vinegar, and let's face it, these two teams have not had a meaningful game since Elway retired and by the wag of a finger, Haley breathed life onto a smoldering fire.

Should Haley have shaken McDaniel's hand? Probably. But good rivalries were never built upon good sportsmanship and this is not Peewee football. If the coach wants to light a fire underneath his guys and launch some shots at a division foe I'm all for it.

Michael Ash: I can't deny enjoying it, but I think he should have shaken his hand. There have been unconfirmed stories about specific events that may have prompted the snub, and if any of them are true, then what Haley did is justified. But we don't know if they're true and Haley isn't giving his reasons. So to the majority of the NFL world, he came off looking poorly.

The question is whether there was a method to the madness. We all know Haley has a temper, but his words and demeanor weren't that of someone in a rage. Plus, even if there was a specific incident that set him off, none of them occurred just as the game was concluding. He would have calmed down well before he walked across the field.

And Haley's not stupid – if he wasn't going to shake McDaniels' hand, he didn't have to walk out to midfield at all. But he still did anyway. Why? After the Chiefs barely showed up for the game, was he trying to send them a message -- some kind of defiant "we're not going to take it anymore" type of thing?

Let's hold final judgments until we see how the Chiefs react against Denver in two weeks. If they come out and lay a beating on the Broncos, the same people criticizing Haley now will be praising him for a brilliant motivational tactic that got his team fired up for the rematch. But if that beating never comes, Haley's going to have to walk out to midfield with his tail between his legs.

We talk about his decisions on fourth down a lot, but the snub may be Haley's biggest gamble of the season. Let's hope it pays off.

A month ago, you all predicted the Chiefs' final record, and nobody had them finishing worse than 10-6. How do you see things finishing now?

Nick Athan: I think the Chiefs will finish 5-2 the rest of the way. I see four home wins (Arizona, Denver, Tennessee, & Oakland). Their lone win away from Kansas City will be at St. Louis. I think the Chiefs match up best with the Rams, far better in my opinion than they do with either Seattle or San Diego. However, I would not be shocked if the Chiefs won against the Seahawks and lose at home against the Titans.

All in all, though, I'm sticking with 10-6. But I reserve the right to change my mind!

Road game at San Diego could be for all the AFC West marbles.
Getty Images



C.E. Wendler: Unfortunately, no one foresaw Oakland's resurgence, and the loss to the Broncos only further complicates the Chiefs' remaining schedule. Had they beaten the Broncos 10-6 certainly looked possible. Now, who knows?

I'd have to adjust my prediction to 8-8 now, which would fall in line with what I said after Kansas City took out the Browns. Maybe I should have trusted my gut instinct, eh?

Josh Scotten: As I peruse the Chiefs remaining schedule, the only game that scares me is the trip to San Diego. Other than that the combined win-loss record of the remaining teams on the Chiefs schedule is 29-34. Even further just three of the seven teams have a winning record and that could worsen down the stretch.

But these guys are young and you never really know which team is going to show up on Sunday. They are quickly developing a reputation for being spotty game in and game out. So that means depending on injuries, coaching, and a wide variety of other unpredictable twists and turns, the Chiefs could finish anywhere from 6-10 to 10-6.

Michael Ash: This would be much easier to answer after this weekend's game. If the Chiefs bounce back like I expect them to, I'd say they'll have a minimum of 8 wins.

I fully realize that Seattle is a tough place to play, and the Rams have been doing well at home, but AFC teams that want to be taken seriously can't be losing games to the dreadful NFC West. So those games would get us to 8 wins, and to get to 10-6, the Chiefs just need to win two more games – their home rematches with the Broncos and Raiders, for instance.

On the other hand, if they lose to Arizona on Sunday, 8 wins might be their maximum. They might not even make it to 8 wins.

But 10-6 seems a bit optimistic at this point, and 8-8 or below seems too low. So I'll split the difference and say they finish 9-7, with wins over Arizona, Seattle, St. Louis, and either Denver or Oakland.

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\r\n\r\nWhy is it that we can't seem to win any games away from Arrowhead, yet last season three of our four wins came on the road?\r\n\r\n

Nick Athan: That's a great question. Last year the road wins at Washington, Oakland, and Denver came against three teams that were all suffering through losing streaks of some kind. At the time the Chiefs played them, each team was ripe for a loss. And in the teams' first pair of road games, they weren't decided until the final series. In Denver, the Chiefs routed the Broncos, similar to what happened this past Sunday.\r\n\r\n

To be honest, in my view the loss at Houston was a setback that this team hasn't been able to shake. Losing at Indy was difficult, but the team played well. In Houston they had the game well in hand and then let it slip away. Had they won that game, they'd have likely defeated the Raiders a couple of weeks ago.\r\n\r\n

This team just doesn't have enough players, at least not yet, that understand you need to make a single play at a given point in the game that can change the outcome. When that happens then this team will start winning again on the road.\r\n\r\n

C.E. Wendler: The answer is fairly simple - the Chiefs are facing much tougher competition on the road this year. Last season, the Chiefs bested the Raiders and Redskins on the road, and both squads were terrible. Their third win, over Denver, is something of an aberration. Chalk it up the Broncos simply choking horribly - they had everything on the line - and the Chiefs playing with house money, having nothing to lose.\r\n\r\n

The other factor may be that the Chiefs aren't sneaking up on anyone this year. After their 3-0 start, they had a huge bull's-eye on their backs. They haven't handled that well.\r\n\r\n

Josh Scotten: Arrowhead has been electric in 2010 and the Chiefs faithful should give themselves a pat on the back for willing this team to some victories that---quit honestly---probably shouldn't have happened (i.e. San Diego and Buffalo). Leaving that comfort of home, and heading into hostile environments like Oakland may just be a bit too much for these young guys at this point in their careers.\r\n\r\n

Give ‘em time though, they'll get it turned around.\r\n\r\n

Michael Ash: It's mainly a question of the opponents. They've just played stiffer competition than they did in their road wins last year. And keep in mind that, by all rights, the Chiefs should have won at both Houston and Oakland, which would make their road record a lot more impressive than it is.\r\n\r\n

When they become a better team, they'll start holding onto those wins instead of letting them slip away. But for now, they're just not a team that's going to go on the road and beat decent teams, and their road schedule isn't as soft as it was a year ago.\r\n\r\n

What happened to the defense on Sunday? Was it just about the extra preparation Denver had, or the injuries at safety? Or was it something bigger than that?\r\n\r\n

Nick Athan: They simply aren't flying to the ball the way they did through the first six games of the season. They aren't blessed with a great deal of team speed. However, they do have athletes. At Denver, the deep secondary was simply overmatched. And the fact the team couldn't generate a pass rush led to most of their failures on Sunday.\r\n\r\n

This team doesn't have a superstar defensive player. They have one pass rusher, an outside linebacker, Tamba Hali. He can't do it all. In the last two weeks, he's been double teamed to the point he's become mostly ineffective. That means someone else needs to step up. The only player who has is safety Eric Berry. When Romeo Crennel unleashes his first round talent, he generally makes things happen.\r\n\r\n

Soft coverage from KC's corners has contributed more to the defensive failures than any other factor.
Getty Images\r\n

\r\n\r\n

C.E. Wendler: Even good defenses get taken out behind the woodshed a few times a season. That's just the NFL, and the law of averages, playing out. And yes, playing a third-string safety had something to do with it. The Chiefs are so thin on defense one injury anywhere is going to have a huge impact.\r\n\r\n

I wouldn't worry too much about it. The only times the Chiefs have looked really bad on defense this year came against elite passing games. Of course, that just spells out the need for a quarterback who can respond in kind when his defense has an off day. Right now the Chiefs clearly don't have that kind of quarterback.\r\n\r\n

Josh Scotten: Make no mistake about it Sunday was Denver's Super Bowl party. Bronco's Head coach Josh McDaniels had his guys ready to bring the hammer down on the Chiefs.\r\n\r\n

Looking deeper the rotation of the Chiefs safeties played a big role in the defensive struggles the last two weeks. Add that with the fact the front seven can't rush the passer, you can see why the Chiefs lost against the Broncos. Lucky for the Chiefs, Crennel has the guru like ability to make this happen but he has to unleash the reigns a bit. To this point, he has yet to show the willingness to consistently do that.\r\n\r\n

Michael Ash: As long as it doesn't become a trend, I don't think it's a sign of something bigger. Only three times this season have the Chiefs given up more than 20 points – one came in overtime, and only by a field goal, and the other two were against high-octane passing games in Houston and Denver.\r\n\r\n

With the Chiefs only having one pass rusher of note, you have to expect them to struggle against the good passing teams. If Arizona and their 30th ranked passing game comes out Sunday and lights up the scoreboard, then there's something wrong. But for now, I'd say the Denver game was just a bad day for a defense that had a major hole in the secondary.\r\n\r\n

What are your thoughts on Haley's handshake snub?\r\n\r\n

Nick Athan: Loved it! I thought it was a brilliant move to take the heat off his players. The Chiefs were embarrassed so badly that all Haley could do was develop a strategy to make sure the focus after the game was not on his football team. Thus, he took the brunt of the 49-29 loss – not for what happened during the game, but after it.\r\n\r\n

It's Friday and we're still talking about. I'd say it was a shrewd and calculated move. And if it was planned, it worked to perfection. It also set the tone for the rematch in a few weeks.\r\n\r\n

Haley's snub was perfectly executed and calculated.
Getty Images\r\n

\r\n\r\n

C.E. Wendler: I loved it. It was entertaining as hell. Every foul-mouthed tirade Haley launched last season was hilarious. I enjoyed each and every one of them, and I'm not even trying to be funny when I say I miss Haley's sideline rants.\r\n\r\n

Unfortunately, it's also highly unprofessional. Haley looked childish. I'm sure Clark Hunt wasn't too happy with it.\r\n\r\n

Josh Scotten: This rivalry needed an injection of piss n' vinegar, and let's face it, these two teams have not had a meaningful game since Elway retired and by the wag of a finger, Haley breathed life onto a smoldering fire.\r\n\r\n

Should Haley have shaken McDaniel's hand? Probably. But good rivalries were never built upon good sportsmanship and this is not Peewee football. If the coach wants to light a fire underneath his guys and launch some shots at a division foe I'm all for it.\r\n\r\n

Michael Ash: I can't deny enjoying it, but I think he should have shaken his hand. There have been unconfirmed stories about specific events that may have prompted the snub, and if any of them are true, then what Haley did is justified. But we don't know if they're true and Haley isn't giving his reasons. So to the majority of the NFL world, he came off looking poorly.\r\n\r\n

The question is whether there was a method to the madness. We all know Haley has a temper, but his words and demeanor weren't that of someone in a rage. Plus, even if there was a specific incident that set him off, none of them occurred just as the game was concluding. He would have calmed down well before he walked across the field.\r\n\r\n

And Haley's not stupid – if he wasn't going to shake McDaniels' hand, he didn't have to walk out to midfield at all. But he still did anyway. Why? After the Chiefs barely showed up for the game, was he trying to send them a message -- some kind of defiant \"we're not going to take it anymore\" type of thing?\r\n\r\n

Let's hold final judgments until we see how the Chiefs react against Denver in two weeks. If they come out and lay a beating on the Broncos, the same people criticizing Haley now will be praising him for a brilliant motivational tactic that got his team fired up for the rematch. But if that beating never comes, Haley's going to have to walk out to midfield with his tail between his legs.\r\n\r\n

We talk about his decisions on fourth down a lot, but the snub may be Haley's biggest gamble of the season. Let's hope it pays off.\r\n\r\n

A month ago, you all predicted the Chiefs' final record, and nobody had them finishing worse than 10-6. How do you see things finishing now?\r\n\r\n

Nick Athan: I think the Chiefs will finish 5-2 the rest of the way. I see four home wins (Arizona, Denver, Tennessee, & Oakland). Their lone win away from Kansas City will be at St. Louis. I think the Chiefs match up best with the Rams, far better in my opinion than they do with either Seattle or San Diego. However, I would not be shocked if the Chiefs won against the Seahawks and lose at home against the Titans.\r\n\r\n

All in all, though, I'm sticking with 10-6. But I reserve the right to change my mind! \r\n\r\n

Road game at San Diego could be for all the AFC West marbles.
Getty Images\r\n

\r\n

C.E. Wendler: Unfortunately, no one foresaw Oakland's resurgence, and the loss to the Broncos only further complicates the Chiefs' remaining schedule. Had they beaten the Broncos 10-6 certainly looked possible. Now, who knows?\r\n\r\n

I'd have to adjust my prediction to 8-8 now, which would fall in line with what I said after Kansas City took out the Browns. Maybe I should have trusted my gut instinct, eh?\r\n\r\n

Josh Scotten: As I peruse the Chiefs remaining schedule, the only game that scares me is the trip to San Diego. Other than that the combined win-loss record of the remaining teams on the Chiefs schedule is 29-34. Even further just three of the seven teams have a winning record and that could worsen down the stretch. \r\n\r\n

But these guys are young and you never really know which team is going to show up on Sunday. They are quickly developing a reputation for being spotty game in and game out. So that means depending on injuries, coaching, and a wide variety of other unpredictable twists and turns, the Chiefs could finish anywhere from 6-10 to 10-6. \r\n\r\n

Michael Ash: This would be much easier to answer after this weekend's game. If the Chiefs bounce back like I expect them to, I'd say they'll have a minimum of 8 wins.\r\n\r\n

I fully realize that Seattle is a tough place to play, and the Rams have been doing well at home, but AFC teams that want to be taken seriously can't be losing games to the dreadful NFC West. So those games would get us to 8 wins, and to get to 10-6, the Chiefs just need to win two more games – their home rematches with the Broncos and Raiders, for instance.\r\n\r\n

On the other hand, if they lose to Arizona on Sunday, 8 wins might be their maximum. They might not even make it to 8 wins.\r\n\r\n

But 10-6 seems a bit optimistic at this point, and 8-8 or below seems too low. So I'll split the difference and say they finish 9-7, with wins over Arizona, Seattle, St. Louis, and either Denver or Oakland.\r\n","mobileBody":"

That's a great question. Last year the road wins at Washington, Oakland, and Denver came against three teams that were all suffering through losing streaks of some kind. At the time the Chiefs played them, each team was ripe for a loss. And in the teams' first pair of road games, they weren't decided until the final series. In Denver, the Chiefs routed the Broncos, similar to what happened this past Sunday.

To be honest, in my view the loss at Houston was a setback that this team hasn't been able to shake. Losing at Indy was difficult, but the team played well. In Houston they had the game well in hand and then let it slip away. Had they won that game, they'd have likely defeated the Raiders a couple of weeks ago.

This team just doesn't have enough players, at least not yet, that understand you need to make a single play at a given point in the game that can change the outcome. When that happens then this team will start winning again on the road.

The answer is fairly simple - the Chiefs are facing much tougher competition on the road this year. Last season, the Chiefs bested the Raiders and Redskins on the road, and both squads were terrible. Their third win, over Denver, is something of an aberration. Chalk it up the Broncos simply choking horribly - they had everything on the line - and the Chiefs playing with house money, having nothing to lose.

The other factor may be that the Chiefs aren't sneaking up on anyone this year. After their 3-0 start, they had a huge bull's-eye on their backs. They haven't handled that well.

Arrowhead has been electric in 2010 and the Chiefs faithful should give themselves a pat on the back for willing this team to some victories that---quit honestly---probably shouldn't have happened (i.e. San Diego and Buffalo). Leaving that comfort of home, and heading into hostile environments like Oakland may just be a bit too much for these young guys at this point in their careers.

Give ‘em time though, they'll get it turned around.

It's mainly a question of the opponents. They've just played stiffer competition than they did in their road wins last year. And keep in mind that, by all rights, the Chiefs should have won at both Houston and Oakland, which would make their road record a lot more impressive than it is.

When they become a better team, they'll start holding onto those wins instead of letting them slip away. But for now, they're just not a team that's going to go on the road and beat decent teams, and their road schedule isn't as soft as it was a year ago.



They simply aren't flying to the ball the way they did through the first six games of the season. They aren't blessed with a great deal of team speed. However, they do have athletes. At Denver, the deep secondary was simply overmatched. And the fact the team couldn't generate a pass rush led to most of their failures on Sunday.

This team doesn't have a superstar defensive player. They have one pass rusher, an outside linebacker, Tamba Hali. He can't do it all. In the last two weeks, he's been double teamed to the point he's become mostly ineffective. That means someone else needs to step up. The only player who has is safety Eric Berry. When Romeo Crennel unleashes his first round talent, he generally makes things happen.



Even good defenses get taken out behind the woodshed a few times a season. That's just the NFL, and the law of averages, playing out. And yes, playing a third-string safety had something to do with it. The Chiefs are so thin on defense one injury anywhere is going to have a huge impact.

I wouldn't worry too much about it. The only times the Chiefs have looked really bad on defense this year came against elite passing games. Of course, that just spells out the need for a quarterback who can respond in kind when his defense has an off day. Right now the Chiefs clearly don't have that kind of quarterback.

Make no mistake about it Sunday was Denver's Super Bowl party. Bronco's Head coach Josh McDaniels had his guys ready to bring the hammer down on the Chiefs.

Looking deeper the rotation of the Chiefs safeties played a big role in the defensive struggles the last two weeks. Add that with the fact the front seven can't rush the passer, you can see why the Chiefs lost against the Broncos. Lucky for the Chiefs, Crennel has the guru like ability to make this happen but he has to unleash the reigns a bit. To this point, he has yet to show the willingness to consistently do that.

As long as it doesn't become a trend, I don't think it's a sign of something bigger. Only three times this season have the Chiefs given up more than 20 points – one came in overtime, and only by a field goal, and the other two were against high-octane passing games in Houston and Denver.

With the Chiefs only having one pass rusher of note, you have to expect them to struggle against the good passing teams. If Arizona and their 30th ranked passing game comes out Sunday and lights up the scoreboard, then there's something wrong. But for now, I'd say the Denver game was just a bad day for a defense that had a major hole in the secondary.



Loved it! I thought it was a brilliant move to take the heat off his players. The Chiefs were embarrassed so badly that all Haley could do was develop a strategy to make sure the focus after the game was not on his football team. Thus, he took the brunt of the 49-29 loss – not for what happened during the game, but after it.

It's Friday and we're still talking about. I'd say it was a shrewd and calculated move. And if it was planned, it worked to perfection. It also set the tone for the rematch in a few weeks.



I loved it. It was entertaining as hell. Every foul-mouthed tirade Haley launched last season was hilarious. I enjoyed each and every one of them, and I'm not even trying to be funny when I say I miss Haley's sideline rants.

Unfortunately, it's also highly unprofessional. Haley looked childish. I'm sure Clark Hunt wasn't too happy with it.

This rivalry needed an injection of piss n' vinegar, and let's face it, these two teams have not had a meaningful game since Elway retired and by the wag of a finger, Haley breathed life onto a smoldering fire.

Should Haley have shaken McDaniel's hand? Probably. But good rivalries were never built upon good sportsmanship and this is not Peewee football. If the coach wants to light a fire underneath his guys and launch some shots at a division foe I'm all for it.

I can't deny enjoying it, but I think he should have shaken his hand. There have been unconfirmed stories about specific events that may have prompted the snub, and if any of them are true, then what Haley did is justified. But we don't know if they're true and Haley isn't giving his reasons. So to the majority of the NFL world, he came off looking poorly.

The question is whether there was a method to the madness. We all know Haley has a temper, but his words and demeanor weren't that of someone in a rage. Plus, even if there was a specific incident that set him off, none of them occurred just as the game was concluding. He would have calmed down well before he walked across the field.

And Haley's not stupid – if he wasn't going to shake McDaniels' hand, he didn't have to walk out to midfield at all. But he still did anyway. Why? After the Chiefs barely showed up for the game, was he trying to send them a message -- some kind of defiant \"we're not going to take it anymore\" type of thing?

Let's hold final judgments until we see how the Chiefs react against Denver in two weeks. If they come out and lay a beating on the Broncos, the same people criticizing Haley now will be praising him for a brilliant motivational tactic that got his team fired up for the rematch. But if that beating never comes, Haley's going to have to walk out to midfield with his tail between his legs.

We talk about his decisions on fourth down a lot, but the snub may be Haley's biggest gamble of the season. Let's hope it pays off.



I think the Chiefs will finish 5-2 the rest of the way. I see four home wins (Arizona, Denver, Tennessee, & Oakland). Their lone win away from Kansas City will be at St. Louis. I think the Chiefs match up best with the Rams, far better in my opinion than they do with either Seattle or San Diego. However, I would not be shocked if the Chiefs won against the Seahawks and lose at home against the Titans.

All in all, though, I'm sticking with 10-6. But I reserve the right to change my mind!



Unfortunately, no one foresaw Oakland's resurgence, and the loss to the Broncos only further complicates the Chiefs' remaining schedule. Had they beaten the Broncos 10-6 certainly looked possible. Now, who knows?

I'd have to adjust my prediction to 8-8 now, which would fall in line with what I said after Kansas City took out the Browns. Maybe I should have trusted my gut instinct, eh?

As I peruse the Chiefs remaining schedule, the only game that scares me is the trip to San Diego. Other than that the combined win-loss record of the remaining teams on the Chiefs schedule is 29-34. Even further just three of the seven teams have a winning record and that could worsen down the stretch.

But these guys are young and you never really know which team is going to show up on Sunday. They are quickly developing a reputation for being spotty game in and game out. So that means depending on injuries, coaching, and a wide variety of other unpredictable twists and turns, the Chiefs could finish anywhere from 6-10 to 10-6.

This would be much easier to answer after this weekend's game. If the Chiefs bounce back like I expect them to, I'd say they'll have a minimum of 8 wins.

I fully realize that Seattle is a tough place to play, and the Rams have been doing well at home, but AFC teams that want to be taken seriously can't be losing games to the dreadful NFC West. So those games would get us to 8 wins, and to get to 10-6, the Chiefs just need to win two more games – their home rematches with the Broncos and Raiders, for instance.

On the other hand, if they lose to Arizona on Sunday, 8 wins might be their maximum. They might not even make it to 8 wins.

But 10-6 seems a bit optimistic at this point, and 8-8 or below seems too low. So I'll split the difference and say they finish 9-7, with wins over Arizona, Seattle, St. Louis, and either Denver or Oakland. 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