The party can’t stop hitting icebergs, but it ain’t over yet.
Lose Sunday? Titanic time.
Since 1990, only 14 percent of NFL teams that started 1-3 went on to reach the postseason. Just nine teams since 1970 made the playoffs after a 1-4 record — and none since the ’11 Tebow Broncos.
If you want to slap a big ol’ “Game of the Season” tag on the Kansas City Chiefs’ (1-3) little dance with the Chicago Bears (1-3) on Sunday at Arrowhead, let’s put it this way: We won’t stop ya.
After three straight weeks of giving up 30 points or more, the Andy Gang is playing for all kinds of juice. Postseason hopes. Mojo. Dignity. Fan trust.
That and relevance. The Royals, bless them, have spent the better part of two-plus years turning the clock in town back to the early 1980s, when Kansas City was home to the Little Baseball Franchise That Could (And Did). The Chiefs, meanwhile, have curiously spent the better part of the past month evoking memories of their less-than-glorious ’80-’85 form: A non-strike average win tally of 7.4 victories, zero playoff berths.
The Fighting Yosts deserve center stage, and deserve it for as long as the October Baseball Gods will allow. But you’d think Andy Reid would want to interject the occasional something into the local dialogue before Halloween. Something other than obscenities.
Beating the Bears doesn’t erase the enmity of the Denver-Green Bay-Cincy triple whammy — in fact, the oddsmakers favor the Chiefs by 9.5 points, which probably says more about what the books think of the Bears — so much as stop the bleeding.
Lose Sunday, the gusher returns, along with the natives’ restlessness. Or worse, the natives just turn their backs, anger giving way to spite and indifference.
And we know the rest of the stages that can follow: Indifference gives way to dark comedy, which then gives way to paper bags, which then gives way to pink slips. It’s the circle of NFL life. Or rather, death.
“Game of the Season?” Fine. We’ll buy that. Of Reid’s previous 16 teams, only two — the 2011 Eagles and 2008 Eagles — opened their respective campaign with a 1-4 mark. Both clubs wound up 8-8 and missed the postseason party.
The ’76 Steelers rebounded from a 1-4 start to reach the AFC conference championship game. But steel, this Chiefs curtain right now sure as heck ain’t. Lose Sunday, and the term “Blue October” suddenly applies to both sides of the Truman Complex parking lot.