There’s no silver lining when it comes to the Kansas City Chiefs start to the 2011 season. The Chiefs have been absolutely putrid to start the year. They were waxed by the Buffalo Bills at home, 48-7, in Week 1, and then again by the Detroit Lions on the road this past Sunday, 41-3. No matter who you play or where, being outscored 89-10 in two weeks is hard to fathom and obviously unacceptable. It doesn’t seem like life is getting any better for Matt Cassel either. He has now lost two big time player makers in Tony Moeaki and Jamaal Charles to season ending injuries. There are also rumors surfacing about Scott Pioli and Todd Haley being fed up with each other. The road doesn’t get any easier for the Chiefs, as they head to San Diego in Week 3 to take on a Chargers team that isn’t happy about their poor performance either last week in a loss to the New England Patriots. All signs point towards this being a long year for Cassel and the Chiefs, but if they could somehow get their act together and pull of the upset in San Diego, the Chiefs would successfully stop the bleeding and have a chance at least at making something of their season.
Matt Cassel joined WHB in Kansas City with Soren Petro to discuss what the Chiefs need to do to get things turned around this week against the San Diego Chargers, how tough it is to lose playmakers like Tony Moeaki and Jamaal Charles with season-ending injuries, whether he thinks changing of offensive coordinators has set the Chiefs offense back, if he thinks the Chiefs can turn things around quickly in a week’s time, whether he looks around the division to see how other teams are doing or if he’s focused solely on himself and the Chiefs’ play, and what he knows about the speculation surrounding Scott Pioli and Todd Haley not getting along.
How do you guys get things turned around this week?
“We have to start with this next week against San Diego to be completely honest. We’ve gotta get in there today and make corrections and do whatever we can to try to figure out what we need to do better. I don’t think it’s a case of effort. I think the guys came out and played with great intensity and effort all of yesterday. It comes down to execution and for us offensively it comes down to taking care of the football and eliminating those turnovers. Any time you eliminate turnovers you will at least have an opportunity to stay in the game.”
How tough is it losing playmakers like Tony Moeaki and Jamaal Charles for the season?
“Well you know Jamaal Charles is a great player and I don’t exactly know what his status is right now. It’s unfortunate part of the NFL and this game because injuries occur. Somebody else is going to have to stand up and I’ve got a lot of confidence in the depth of our running back position that somebody else is going to step up and fill in that role.”
How much has the changing of offensive coordinators set this team back?
“We can sit here and say offensive coordinator and this and that. Again, it is not the offensive coordinator. I really don’t want to sit here and make excuses like it’s this coordinator or that coordinator. The fact is it comes back to basic fundamentals and just pure execution in our offensive scheme and taking care of the football. That’s what we talk about as priority number one and that’s taking care of the football. Any time you have six turnovers, I don’t care who you are, you are not going to win any ball games with that let alone two turnovers in a game.”
Do you think you can turn this team around in one week?
“I think history would tell you that any team can turn it around on any given week. I think we have to keep pushing forward. There’s a lot of football left to be played. I know I keep saying that. I know with the results of the last two games there’s not a lot of optimism throughout the city of Kansas City, but at the same time we do have a lot of football and we do need to try to continue to stay the course and focus on the San Diego Chargers and try to figure out what we need to go out there and win.”
Do you look around the division to see what’s going on or do you just focus on yourself?
“Not necessarily right now. We have a lot of focusing to do on our own trying to figure out what we need to do and how we can get better.”
What do you make of the speculation surrounding Scott Pioli and Todd Haley not getting along?
“I haven’t heard that. I haven’t read that. I don’t know anything about that. To be completely honest I haven’t seen that with my own two eyes. From what I see they talk to each other in the building. They are communicating and everything. It looks great, so I don’t know anything. I can’t really speculate on the article or what is being said out there cause I haven’t seen that or know anything about it.”