|Chiefs' 2-6 home record their worst in 30 years|
|Written by Admin|
|Monday, 17 December 2007 15:20|
First Paul Wiggin was fired about halfway through the 2-12 disaster in 1977. Then at the end of the year, interim head coach Tom Bettis was shown the door, told he had not performed well enough to get the job permanently.
That probably won't happen this time. Even though the Chiefs will drag a seven-game losing skid and a 4-10 record into Detroit this week for their next-to-last game in a miserable season, Herm Edwards seems assured of at least one more year in Kansas City.
But everyone is bracing for a major player purge. The 26-17 loss to Tennessee on Sunday ended their 2006 home record at 2-6, the worst since the ill-fated '77 team was 1-6 at Arrowhead Stadium in a 14-game season.
Clark Hunt, co-owner and chairman of the Chiefs' board, told The Associated Press he would be available for comment after the season.
Until then, whatever coaching or administrative changes that might be in the wind will be only speculation.
Nevertheless, Sunday's loss to the Titans figures to be the last appearance in a Chiefs uniform for anywhere from 15 to 20 players.
``There will be a lot of changes around here,'' said linebacker Derrick Johnson, who is probably one of the few not in danger. ``You lose like this, you've got to ship somebody out and ship somebody in. That means just about anybody. It doesn't matter.''
At one point late in Sunday's game, a few players on the Chiefs' sideline got into a shouting match with a group of fans who had been heckling them all day.
Damion McIntosh, one of the players doing some yelling, said he understood the fans' frustration.
``How many games have we lost at home?'' the left tackle said. ``Their frustration is our frustration. We've disappointed our fans. If we can, we'd apologize for our performance. This can't go on in the future. We have to put out a better product.''
The Chiefs have long prided themselves on a home-field advantage that was practically second to none. Even that has disappeared.
``The coaching staff is going to do what they have to do in order to improve this team,'' said McIntosh. ``There are no ifs, ands or buts abut it.''
Edwards was the target of many of the angry signs fans were holding. So was president and general manager Carl Peterson.
Unable to score in the fourth period in their last six games, this is easily the worst season and the worst team the Chiefs have had since Peterson took over in 1989 and turned the franchise around.
``We're all disappointed. The fans haven't gone through anything like this,'' said Edwards. ``It's tough on everybody. Our fans are very, very loyal. They have a passion for this football team. They'll be back cheering again. Happier days will come. This has just been an unfortunate season for us. The sun's going to come up and it will get better.''
One of the few veterans who has maintained a level of excellence has been tight end Tony Gonzalez, who at 31 seems to be playing about as well as ever. Gonzalez stood in the locker room Monday and knew he was seeing a great many teammates for one of the last times.
``I think there's going to be some major changes,'' Gonzalez said. ``I would anticipate that. How could you not? How ignorant it would be of us, and arrogant, too, to say we don't have to go out there and fix this thing? You have to make drastic changes because right now it's not getting done.''
After Detroit, the Chiefs will close out Edwards' second season at the New York Jets. Edwards said Monday that one thing fans have been clamoring for could be in the offing - the return of Pro Bowl running back Larry Johnson.
Johnson has missed six straight games with a foot injury and is slowly on the mend.
``We'll see how he feels Wednesday and see if he can practice more than he has,'' Edwards said.
Just a year ago, Edwards had the Chiefs in the playoffs.
``It's tough in the fact that we were coming off a playoff deal last year and we come back this year with a veteran team on one side of the ball,'' he said. ``It didn't work out the way we anticipated ... Now we have to go about fixing it.''