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2009 Chiefs Opener

It’s rare for me to host a party. Most of the time, I’d rather go to a party rather than host one. However, today, it’ll be a different story. During the games I am not covering Chiefs games, I’ll watch a couple of those away games with only a couple close buddies of mine. Sometimes it may be...

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Chiefs/Eagles pregame

Posted by FarzinVousoughian | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 27-09-2009



Early in the week, it was reported that Chiefs LB Derrick Johnson won’t play Sunday. The ESPN scrolling news ticker on the bottom says that he is questionable. To be honest with all of you, I have no idea what the deal is. I’ll assume he is out because that was the word from the Kansas City Chiefs PR. WR Dwayne Bowe is questionable and we’ll all find out momentarily if he can play or not. The Chiefs do have WR Bobby Wade, but if Bowe is gone, Wade will have to do a lot for the team due to Bowe’s absence. Bowe so far has been the best player on the team, despite he hasn’t gained many yards receiving. He’s caught a game-leading touchdown against Oakland and Baltimore.

This past week on CZ, my keys to the game were simply to play good football on all three phases of the game. But there have to be three key ones to pick and I’ve got those three.

Pass rush: Why did the Patriots lose to the Giants in the Super Bowl? Because Tom Brady got sacked five times. No, he never through an interception, however, sack-by-sack, Brady’s confidence continued to decline throughout the game, eventually giving the Giants the rings. Kevin Kolb is the (projected) starting QB due to Donavon McNabb’s injury. Despite throwing for over 391 yards, Kolb did threw two touchdowns and three interceptions, going 31/51. A young guy like Kolb may not get sacked a lot, instead, if the pass rush is applied, Kolb will complete passes to Brandon Flowers. I don’t expect the Eagles to pass heavy like they were last week.
Stop the run: This 3-4 defense did a fine job last week against two good running backs. Brian Westbrook may not be available. Whether he is or not, I imagine Andy Reid will try to keep the ball on the ground rather than forcing interceptions. The Chiefs need to be ready and play good defense all around.
Run LJ, RUN!: Larry Johnson and the rest of the running backs were used a lot last week. LJ had over 100 total yards from scrimmage while Dantrell Savage caught six passes, tied first on the team last week. Jackie Battle was also used on a couple occasions. Offensive coordinator (and head coach..) Todd Haley needs to fire LJ up and have him run over that Philadelphia defense.

I really do feel like this Chiefs team can pick up the win due to injuries sustained on McNabb, Westbrook and DeSean Jackson. Winning against an injured team isn’t much to brag over, but no matter how good or bad you are, you must take advantage of that. That’s the way it works in the NFL. If your opponents have key players on the sideline for the entire game, your being given a chance to draw first blood, and hopefully not allow the other team to unleash with their backups. I’ll pick Kansas City to win 20-17.

EDIT: These in-actives are official. Dwayne Bowe, Donavon McNabb, Brian Westbrook, Kevin Curtis.

DeSean Jackson will play. But here is the question I still propose: Can Kolb get the ball to him successfully? We’ll find out.

Chiefs/Raiders Post-Game

Posted by FarzinVousoughian | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 20-09-2009



I’m just going to flat out tell you something that every Chief fan will hate. Hate it or not, this is the plain truth. The Chiefs did not deserve to win this game.

The Chiefs were by far the better team dominating in first downs, total net yards, and time of possession, which obviously was the complete opposite last week at Baltimore. However, the bottom line is, Kansas City lost.

The Chiefs did many things correctly except for one thing, and that was putting points on the board. Last week, the Chiefs forced their defense to play for almost 40 minutes of the game. Today, the Chiefs time of possession was very similar to last weeks except for the fact they were on the better end of that stat. Todd Haley can thank his run defense. They limited the Raiders running game and forced JaMarcus Russell to make bad throws. When the Chiefs offense took over, they ran the ball a lot and took a lot of time off the clock, trying to wear out the Raiders defense. That is exactly what the Ravens did to the Chiefs in week one. However, Michael Huff was the poison picking off two Matt Cassel passes. Cassel did bounce back in his debut as a Chief throwing a touchdown pass to Dwayne Bowe. However, the Raiders were not ready to give this game away. By the time the two minute warning arrived, the Raiders two minute offense dominated the Chiefs two minute defense. In the end, Darren McFadden ran inside the endzone for the the only (and the game winning) touchdown for the Raiders, 13-10.

Before halftime, head coach Todd Haley decided to forego a field goal attempt with 14 seconds to go before halftime at the nine yard line. Cassel dumped off a pass to running back Dantrell Savage as a pair of Raiders threw him to the ground, and with no timeouts left, the Chiefs missed out on the opportunity of scoring three points heading into halftime. Many want to blame Cassel for his poor passing decision and I do not disagree with anyone. But here is one thing everyone needs to keep in mind. When you have zero timeouts and if your at the nine yard line and want to get one more play off with 14 seconds remaining, your making the job easy for the defense. Due to the fact the team is at the nine yard line, they only have to worry about a small portion of the field. There is no doubt in my mind the defensive coaches for the Raiders asked all their defensive backs and linebackers to play hard coverage and not allow the ball to get past the endzone. They did exactly just that. This was all on Todd Haley. As a Super Bowl offensive coordinator, he should have known much better. The game was tied at three and the Chiefs could have taken a three point lead heading into halftime. The Chiefs did get the ball back after halftime, which made the decision to go for it more confusing. That play call came back to haunt the Chiefs.

Individually and as a team, the Chiefs dominated the Raiders except for the interceptions by Michael Huff. Huff’s interceptions were enough to help the Raiders limit the Chiefs. Kansas City should have never scored 10 points. They should have had much more on the score board. The Raiders were 3/13 on third down and only gathered 11 first downs, all in just 21:21 possession. Despite how ugly those statistics were, they still managed to overcome adversity on the road in one of the loudest stadiums in the league, despite several empty seats. And only time will tell when the loudness of Arrowhead Stadium will go down.

Chiefs/Raiders Pre-Game.

Posted by FarzinVousoughian | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 20-09-2009



Inactive for today

Tyler Thigpen – 3rd QB
WR Terrance Copper
QB Matt Gutierrez
CB Ricardo Coclough
RB Jamaal Charles
C/G Andy Alleman
TE Brad Cottam
LB Pierre Walters

Charlie Frye – 3rd QB
WR Johnnie Lee Higgins
RB Justin Fargas
T Khalif Barnes
G Paul McQuistan
WR Chaz Schilens
TE Brandon Myers
WR Nick Miller

Brandon Flowers will play. Matt Cassel is now cleared to start.
Keys to the game for the Chiefs:
–Avoid three and outs-The Chiefs forced their defense to play football for 40 minutes. And that defense still gave the Chiefs an opportunity to win the game, which shows you how big of an asset they can be.
–Protect the QB-Give Matt Cassel time. Other than the final drive of the game, the Chiefs only gave up one sack. This defensive line is going to challenge the Chiefs. Tight end Brad Cottam won’t play. Therefore, tight end Sean Ryan and fullback Mike Cox will need to step up and be the extra key blocker incase Greg Ellis or Richard Seymour get through our offensive line.
–Stop the run-The Raiders have Darren McFadden and Michael Bush running the ball. With Justin Fargas, they ran for 300 rushing yards against Kansas City in week two’s home opener for the Chiefs. The Chiefs 3-4 defense will be tested. If they can stop the run, they will have to rely on Jamarcus Russell. Oh, don’t forget, Brandon Flowers is back today. So the Raiders will need Russell to be mistake free. Lets see how that goes.

I’m picking Kansas City to win this game 20-17.

70 hours past

Posted by FarzinVousoughian | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 16-09-2009



It’s been 70 hours since Chiefs head coach, Todd Haley, lost his first game as an NFL head coach. He’s learned a lot, and I must say, he’s done a great job the past 70 hours finding ways to improve his football team. He started off by bringing in former Vikings wide receiver, Bobby Wade, who previously worked with Haley in Chicago. The Chiefs also brought in another receiver from Arizona, Lance Long, to the practice squad. The Chiefs waived linebacker Turk McBride and wide receiver Rodney Wright.

Although these are improvements, the Chiefs will need to bring in some offensive lineman. Left tackle Branden Albert allowed two sacks and right guard Mike Goff allowed one. I’m not pushing for the panic button asking for new players after one game just because of sacks, but the Chiefs offensive coordinator (we all know who that is), needs to be cautious and get ready to bring in linemen soon. The Chiefs did not provide the best protection for the backfield this past Sunday. Newly acquired defensive end for the Raiders, Richard Seymour, got off to a fast start this past Monday. Seymour and seven others are leading the NFL in sacks with two. This past Monday, the Raiders put Seymour on every position at defensive line. Seymour came through with sacks and applied pressure on Philip Rivers throughout the night in front of millions of people on ESPN. Without a doubt, the Raiders will place Seymour against the weakest Chief on the line of scrimmage. On episode 166 of “The Chiefs Zone,” I suggested that the Chiefs stick their 6-7 tight end on whatever side Seymour is on for most of the game. That way, the Chiefs will have protection and the offensive lineman will receive blocking help throughout the game against Seymour. Seymour will definitely be a game changer for the Raiders this year and will take advantage of his pass rushing abilities. How will Todd Haley prepare for the former three time Super Bowl champion?

Chiefs/Ravens post game blog

Posted by FarzinVousoughian | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 13-09-2009



The Kansas City Chiefs made the announcement this morning that Brodie Croyle would start due to the injury sustained to Matt Cassel back in week three of the preseason. Croyle was the most impressive Chiefs quarterback in the offseason and got an opportunity to shine.

The Ravens offense opened up with a bang in the first half. Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco came off of an impressive rookie season helping his team reach the AFC Championship. He hopes to duplicate his success heading into his sophomore season. Flacco came threw 26 passes in the first half with one of those passes turning into a touchdown pass to running back, Willis McGahee. Flacco finished off going 26 for 43 passing over 300 yards and passed for three touchdowns along with one interception. Good thing Flacco played well in this game. There is no doubt that this guy loves trash talking after saying that he’d be surprised if the Chiefs would want to play in the fourth quarter. It turned out that the Chiefs did compete in the fourth quarter. It was a complete opposite of last year.

The Chiefs took the lead once and tied the game twice after a 10-0 deficit early in the game. Safety and special teams captain, Jon McGraw, came through with a double play on special teams, blocking a punt and recovering his own block in the endzone for the first touchdown this season for the Chiefs. The momentum shift continued after touchdown passes to wide receiver Dwayne Bowe and tight end Sean Ryan. 2009 Mr. Irrelevant, Ryan Succop, came through with a 53 yard field goal to help the Chiefs stay in the game. Succop ties for the second longest field goal in Chiefs history (Lawrence Tynes scored a 53-yarder to win a game against the San Diego Chargers in 2006.)

However, the Chiefs offense could not keep up with Baltimore’s explosive offense. The Ravens were successful in scoring 21 points alone in the fourth quarter. The Chiefs were out numbered in many key categories.

Larry Johnson rushing yards: 20
Ray Rice rushing yards: 108
Willis McGahee still had more than Johnson with 44 yards on the ground.

Chiefs first downs: 11
Ravens first downs: 32
The Chiefs did not move the chains until late in the second half.

Chiefs third downs: 2/10
Ravens third downs: 10/17

Chiefs total net yards: 188
Ravens total net yards: 501

Chiefs time of possession: 20:11
Ravens time of possession: 39:49

The numbers clearly explain why the Chiefs did not win the football game. The Chiefs had many three-and-outs and failed to convert on third down.

There are a couple positives that can be brought up. The Chiefs don’t give up any turnovers while linebackers Derrick Johnson came through with an interception and Tamba Hali forced a fumble off of Flacco’s hands. The Chiefs receiving core came through with a couple key receptions. The biggest con in this game was the fourth quarter, especially during the “must score” drive in the fourth quarter. On third and fourth down with a lot of yards to go, Brodie Croyle makes short passes during a critical part of the game, eventually allowing the Ravens to not only get the ball back, but score one more touchdown before the end of the game.

Cassel and cornerback Brandon Flowers were certainly missed in this game and it was relevant as the Ravens offense continued to target back up, Maurice Leggett.

For the second consecutive year, the Chiefs will open their home game in week two against the same team, the Oakland Raiders, who have a short week due to a Monday night game, which also occurred last year. The Raiders prevailed last year, but with a new team, and another short week for Oakland, Kansas City will be ready for the Raiders in the new Arrowhead Stadium.

Chiefs/Ravens pregame

Posted by FarzinVousoughian | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 13-09-2009



Matt Cassel will not play tonight against the Ravens. It is expected that Brodie Croyle will start for the Chiefs at the quarterback position, but nothing has been confirmed.

Here are the keys to the game for the Chiefs

Protect the QB — The Chiefs offensive line needs to give Brodie Croyle Croyle/Tyler Thigpen some time in the backfield. If they can do that, Cassel should find his receivers.
Get takeaways — Joe Flacco threw 12 interceptions last year and fumbled the ball quite a lot during the regular season. The Chiefs new 3-4 defense needs to come up with takeaways to give the offense some opportunities to score some points.
Pass rush — This team switched to the 3-4 for many reasons. Last year, the Chiefs had 10 sacks, fewest for an NFL team. The Chiefs need to apply some pressure on Flacco and force him to gamble and make passes he would not want to take.

2009 Chiefs Opener

Posted by FarzinVousoughian | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 12-09-2009



It’s rare for me to host a party. Most of the time, I’d rather go to a party rather than host one. However, today, it’ll be a different story. During the games I am not covering Chiefs games, I’ll watch a couple of those away games with only a couple close buddies of mine. Sometimes it may be at my house, their house or out in a sports bar. Thankfully, this season, the Chiefs opener is on the road, therefore, I decided to host a Chiefs season opener party today, which I got done setting up for last night. The only thing left to do in the morning is to set up the Chiefs flag outside, all my friends to get here and for the pizza to arrive. You can’t enjoy a football game without soda and pizza, unless your not a fan of pizza.

As you all know, I love watching Chiefs football. I’ll always be watching the games either with my family or my friends. Not many of them are optimistic about the Chiefs. Many people in the local media were optimistic in my mind last year. Many of those analysts expected the Chiefs to pull off at least seven wins. I predicted three wins at most before the season kicked off. Obviously, I wasn’t very optimistic about Herm Edwards’ favorite quarterback, Brodie Croyle. However, when Tyler Thigpen took over the starting spot, my views on this football team became optimistic, considering the Chiefs were only a couple games behind San Diego by the time Thigpen started games for the Chiefs in the middle of the season. After all of his hard work, Thigpen was only victorious once last season. The victory came against the Oakland Raiders. Defeating the Oakland Raiders is no different than the Kansas Jayhawks beating the UMKC Kangaroos in basketball (or in any sport.) Many people ignore the statistics and focus on the win-loss record. But look at Kansas City Royals starting pitcher, Zack Greinke. He is currently in the top five in the American League in strukeouts (ranked second with 216), innings pitched (ranked third with 205.1), complete games (ranked second with 6) and in the ERA category (first with 2.19.) However, the Royals have a 4-6 record in his previous 10 games when Greinke started on the mound. Greinke currently holds a 13-8 record this year and thankfully, the judges are still viewing him as a serious Cy Young award winner, which he clearly deserves.

Thigpen doesn’t put up large numbers like Greinke (but it’s different when Greinke has complete control of what he does while Thigpen has to rely on others for his personal success in the stat books.) However, Thigpen is very similar to Greinke. They both put up good numbers to give their team an opportunity to win games. But in the end, they get no support from their teammates. Greinke does well just about every time he pitches, but the Royals struggle at the plate and score one run while Greinke does his best to keep his ERA low. In Thigpen’s case, he did a good job of not turning the ball over and put the ball where only his receivers could get it. He received the same treatment as Greinke. Thigpen’s receivers dropped first down passes on third downs. They dropped open passes in the endzone.

The Chiefs were not able to compete in games because of the supporting cast and the coaching staff. General Manager, Scott Pioli, made changes in both areas and made sure the right people would replace the ones who he shipped out. So here is why I’m optimistic this year. Out of the 14 losses, nine of those games were decided within 10 points or less. Seven of those nine games were decided by only one possession. In a majority of those games, the Chiefs started off with a strong and walked into halftime with a lead, just to blow it to the opposing teams in the final quarter of the game due to lack of talent and lack of aggressiveness from the coaches.

This time, the Chiefs have a smarter coaching staff and more talented players. The Chiefs do have a lot of easy teams on this upcoming schedule. Because of last years results and the strong offseason the Chiefs had, is why I’m very optimistic. I am fully aware that former Chiefs tight end, Tony Gonzalez, was a big factor in helping the Chiefs compete and is no longer here. Although he is dearly missed by all Chiefs fans, I still feel this team will be able to move on without him. With the way the AFC West is shaped, the Chiefs have an unlocked door. The Raiders and Broncos continue to fall back while San Diego makes no offseason moves while Kansas City was one of the most active teams this offseason. If San Diego cannot play good football, this division can go to Kansas City. I know asking for a team to choke is to much, but we’ve all seen the surprises of teams choking and giving away their division. If the Chiefs do win the division, Arrowhead Stadium will be hosting a playoff game. For now, lets just focus on improving from the six combined wins the past two years. Lets see how well this Chiefs team does under the new regime.