Drum Beats: It's Over

I can't remember the last time I wanted a season to be over this badly. By the time the Kansas City Chiefs and the New York Jets reached the fourth quarter Sunday, I was dying inside. Naturally, the game went to overtime.

Ultimately, the Chiefs lost 2007's Least Watchable Game, 13-10. I'm not sure yet if that's a good thing or a bad thing. Yes, this loss secured KC's place in the top five of next year's draft, giving the Chiefs an opportunity to garner an absolute stud, or to acquire even more picks than the 10 or 11 they have today.

But it also marked the most horrific seasonal breakdown Kansas City football has ever seen. Remember, the Chiefs started the season 4-3, and were in first place going into their bye week. I'm not sure what happened during the bye, but something changed everything.

Today's game went pretty much the way the season went for the Chiefs. Offensively, the Chiefs couldn't find any consistency. The Chiefs went to their sixth running back this season when Jackie Battle had to fill in for an injured Kolby Smith. There were dropped passes, questionable play calls, and up and down play from the offensive line. Defensively, the Chiefs played well most of the time, but gave up big plays when it counted. That's basically how the entire year went for Kansas City.

There were some bright spots. Defensive end Jared Allen made his first Pro Bowl and leads the NFL in sacks. Rookie Dwayne Bowe showed big play ability that hasn't been seen from a Chiefs receiver in years. Linebacker Derrick Johnson continues to develop. But there's a lot of questions surrounding this season. Part of the issue for Chiefs fans this year was a lack of knowledge about "the plan." Was this a rebuilding year for the Chiefs, or a massive failure of a playoff run?

I suspect it was both - not an unreasonable set of expectations, as it's been done before. I'm just not sure how much head coach Herm Edwards was able to execute his plan from the beginning, and that could have been the dagger that killed this year.

There's an air of finality after this game, beyond it being the last game of the season. I'm not sure what will happe this offseason, but there's going to be a lot of changes, and I have a feeling they starts today.

Some of the players who started or played significant minutes against the Jets won't be seen in a Chiefs uniform again. Some the coaches on the sidelines may not be back. The Chiefs need to pull off a major offseason renovation to be considered a contender next year. Even if they do pull off that sort of overhaul, it may be a while before Chiefs fans start trusting again. We're all going to be recovering from this year for a long time.

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