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Chiefs at Chargers
Sunday, January 1st
W - 37 to 27

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Han Solo Said It Best

More by Ed Fulda
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How does one sum up the Chiefs’ performance against the Vikings? “PU” will do nicely, I think. KC put up about as much resistance against the Vikings as the French did against Germany in 1940, with pretty much the same results. One has to wonder if the coaching staff even bothered to prepare a game plan. The offense was sluggish & predictable, the defense was non-existent, and the special teams were anything but.

That the offense played poorly was surprising. You would have thought that the Chiefs were facing the ’85 Bears instead of the 28th ranked defense in the NFL. Eddie Kennison and Johnny Morton have been average all season. Saturday, they were worthless. Trent Green was out of his rhythm all day. No one seemed capable of hanging on to the ball.

The defense has reverted to what it was last year – bad. In the previous five games, opponents had literally feasted on the “d” and the Vikings joined the buffet line Saturday. In the last six games, KC has surrendered an average of 192.5 net rushing yards and 413.7 net total yards. No one seems capable of tackling an opponent. The blitz packages are glaringly obvious. It is also glaringly obvious that Greg Robinson is the worst defensive coordinator in the NFL.

I won’t harp too much on the special teams. Yes, they had a poor game but that was more the result of committing some stupid penalties on coverage rather than covering poorly.

One could be an optimist and point out that KC is 12-3 despite the loss. With the Bears coming into town on Sunday, it looks likely that the Chiefs will finish at 13-3 – a mark that equals what the 1995 and 1997 teams did.

A pessimist will quickly counter by pointing out that the ’95 and ’97 compiled their records despite playing tougher schedules than the ’03 squad has had to play. The ’95 & ’97 squads regularly beat opponents with winning records and they played excellent defense. Even then, those squads failed to win a playoff game. The ’03 team can’t play defense and they have turned in a sorry mark against teams with winning records. On more than one occasion, Han Solo remarked, “I’ve got a bad feeling about this.” So do I.

There’s an old adage that you can’t win in January unless you can run the ball. But you can’t win unless you stop the other team from running the ball. Right now, everything points to an early exit from the playoffs unless this team gets its collective head out of the fog it’s been in for the past six weeks. It’s time for Vonnie Holliday and Shawn Barber to show some locker room leadership. It’s time for all the defensive players to quit going for the “big hit” and tackle properly. It’s time for Dick Vermeil to aim a boot at Greg Robinson’s kiester. It’s time for Johnny Morton and Eddie Kennison to elevate their game.

In short, it’s time for the Chiefs to get serious.

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