Itís a fine story, the Kansas City Chiefs. They represent the little guy, the long shotÖthe underdog. These stories are much the same, itís about the one who doesnít stand a chance then somehow does. Underdogs constantly operate under the slim hope of possibility and I get hooked every time. I canít say no to the underdog, because reason doesnít apply to them, and it makes us feel good. Itís nice to know that itís not always a cookie cutter world and the impossible can be possible. It makes life worth living. When it works out for the small fry we marvel and are inspired to do the same. The one who shouldnít be there teaches us something about willpower.
Even though the Chiefs beat the Jacksonville Jaguars I was ready to write something about Trent Green and his three turnovers. I think I had something on the defense to. Larry Johnson broke and set the record for most carries in an NFL season, but I wasnít jumping up and down with joy. I believe I was jumping up and down asking why Michael Bennett only got two carries.
I was fully prepared to talk about next year and the off-season. I was, but then a funny thing happened. Joe Nedney kicked a 36-yard field goal in overtime and the Denver Broncos lost. Not only did the Broncos lose, but everything that needed to go right for the Chiefs did. Now theyíre in the playoffs. Wow! The stars aligned and just like that the Chiefs are looking at another week of football.
Logic got shown the door Sunday and the Chiefs are now preparing for the Indianapolis Colts.
How do you explain it? Should we even try?
ďTwenty teams are packing up today,Ē said Herman Edwards. ďWeíre not one of those 20. I donít want to hear about luck.Ē
Iíve had words for Edwards, not all kind, but Iíve given props when due. Those other teams should have taken care of business; they didnít, so the Chiefs are in. Be proud of that, because the Chiefs did what they had to do.
Itís been an up and down season with several bumps along the way, but itís not the Broncos who started off 6-2 still looking to play. Itís not Carson Palmer and his Cincinnati Bengals. Itís not the teams we thought would have been there. If you knew itíd be the Chiefs all along then youíre a smarter fan than I, but I wasnít expecting it.
The Chiefs are preparing to move forward and the media wants Edwards to say the Chiefs backed in or got lucky? Forget it, because thatís not how the underdog operates. Whatís important is theyíre in and once in itís a new ballgame.
Thatís when the impossible happens, when the heart of an underdog shines the brightest.
And with Johnson up against a team who gives up 173 yards a game on the ground (Colts are dead last in the league!), hey, then it looks very possible.
This is a great story because of the year the Chiefs have had. Despite the adversity this team has faced with Lamar Hunt passing away and many of its veteran players in doubt the Chiefs are in the playoffs. Left for dead they made it and in Edwards first year. With all the uncertainty surrounding this team itís a good feeling. Maybe some of us, including me, made more to do about some things than needed. There are issues, but theyíre in the playoffs despite them. This town needed that, I know Edwards needed it.
It wasnít a pretty road, but everyone will be looking forward to this Saturday. It doesnít matter that the Chiefs didnít win their division or that they donít have a fat record. Thereís still a mountain to climb, but who cares, at least they can still climb. Theyíre in the playoffs!
Now Ty Law can earn his pay by mentoring the ones who have never been here, now this team can forget about what they should have or didnít do during the regular season and focus on the task at handÖthe playoffs.
Put on those rose colored glasses, its okay, and cheer your big red and gold hearts out on Saturday. You deserve it, and the Chiefs need it.