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Williamson: Taylor should have been a Chief

Maybe Jason Taylor was never a real possibility for the Kansas City Chiefs. But he should have been.

But it won't happen. Taylor is going to be a Miami Dolphin again.

I've written it before and I stand by it -- Kansas City should have gone after Taylor. The Chiefs set an NFL record for the fewest sacks in a season last year with 10. Yet, they've done little to help their pass rush this offseason.

Taylor, who will turn 35 in September, has been one of the most consistent pass-rushers in the league in recent years. Yes, he is getting older, but the new Chiefs regime hasn't been turned off by age. The Chiefs have brought in linebackers Mike Vrabel and Zach Thomas this offseason. The fact that Taylor and Thomas are brothers-in-law would have been a bonus.

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13 May 2009 by Ryan Luis

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Chiefs Miss Out on Taylor

http://www.patriotsgab.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/03/jason-taylor.jpg
Jason Taylor, a six-time Pro Bowler, rejoined the Miami Dolphins today.

Taylor's agent, Gary Wichard, said the defensive end/linebacker signed a $1.5 million, one-year contract.

Taylor played his first 11 seasons with the Dolphins before being traded to the Washington Redskins. He was released by Washington this offseason after one injury-plagued season.

Taylor had expressed a desire to be closer to his South Florida home.

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Flashback: Williamson: Chiefs need to sign Jason Taylor

The Kansas City Chiefs need to take the Zach Thomas addition one step further and sign his brother-in-law, Jason Taylor.

A Thomas-Taylor reunion (they starred together for years in Miami) would be perfect as the Chiefs move forward.

Yes, Taylor is older -- he will be 35 in September -- but it's clear new Kansas City general manager Scott Pioli wants to sprinkle his young roster with veterans at key positions. Pioli came over from New England, where adding older players was the norm. So far this offseason, he has traded for linebacker Mike Vrabel and agreed to terms with Thomas. Taylor would give Kansas City's green defense a third savvy veteran for the short term.

Taylor wouldn't simply offer experience as the Chiefs transition to the 3-4 defensive scheme. He'd give Kansas City a much-needed asset: A pass-rusher.

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13 May 2009 by Ryan Luis

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Teicher: Chiefs seeking special-teams solutions

W hile growing up and attending college in Louisiana, rookie wide receiver Quinten Lawrence didn’t get much of a chance to watch or learn a lot about the Chiefs.

One recent player he does know about is Dante Hall. That’s no coincidence because Lawrence, a sixth-round draft pick, is trying to be the first Chiefs player to adequately replace Hall as the kick-return specialist since Hall was traded two seasons ago.

Lawrence is part of the Chiefs’ plan to upgrade their feeble special teams. They also drafted a kicker, Ryan Succop, in the seventh round and a cornerback, Donald Washington, in part for his special-teams skills, in the fourth.

Including the re-signing of their best special-teams player, Jon McGraw, and the addition of veterans like Monty Beisel, the Chiefs appear serious about becoming competitive in the kicking game.

“We want competition,” coach Todd Haley said, “in as many positions as we can.”

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13 May 2009 by Ryan Luis

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BR: Wanted: A Kansas City Chiefs Pass Rush

Ten.

That is the paltry number of sacks recorded by the Kansas City Chiefs’ defense last year. It also stands as the all-time low for a team during a 16-game season. To further put that number in perspective, 11 players surpassed that mark individually last year.

Kansas City, however, did little to address its most dire need—an anemic pass rush—through free agency or the NFL Draft.

In the pass-first NFL, a good pass rush is essential to fielding a good team. It takes the quarterback out of his rhythm and stops drives. When an offense has unlimited time to operate, any NFL quarterback can pick apart a defense, and even the best cornerbacks cannot stay with wide receivers.

Like many NFL teams, the Chiefs primarily will use a 3-4 defense this year. In that scheme, the outside linebackers supply most of the pass rush. The Super Bowl champion Pittsburgh Steelers ran a prototypical 3-4 in 2008, and OLB's LaMarr Woodley and James Harrison combined for 27.5 sacks.

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12 May 2009 by Ryan Luis

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BR: Can Kansas City Chiefs Thrive Under Todd Haley's Offensive Approach?

The Kansas City Chiefs brought in Todd Haley because of the massive success he had as the offensive coordinator with the Arizona Cardinals. 

His offense was positively unstoppable through the air, ranking fifth in the NFL in passing yards in 2007, and second in the league a season ago.

But Haley also had some of the better aerial weapons in the league, in Kurt Warner, Larry Fitzgerald, and Anquan Boldin. The Cardinals' third wide receiver, Steve Breaston amassed 77 catches a year ago, and all three topped the 1,000-yard mark.

Can the Chiefs make a claim that they have anything close to the weapons the Cards boasted?  Matt Cassel had a very good season for the New England Patriots , throwing for over 3,600 yards and 21 touch downs.

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12 May 2009 by Ryan Luis

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PFT: Source: Pioli Has Final Say

In response to our item regarding quotes from Chiefs president Denny Thum suggesting that G.M. Scott Pioli reports to Thum — and thus that Pioli might not have “final say” over the football operations, a league source with knowledge of the team’s power structure tells us that Pioli does not report to Thum.

“Just to be 100 percent clear,” the source said, “Scott Pioli has final say over the Kansas City Chiefs roster no ifs ands or buts.  Both Pioli and Thum report directly to Clark Hunt.  The boundaries are pretty clear with Thum overseeing the business side and Pioli overseeing the football side.”

Still, Thum’s recent words imply a different arrangement.

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11 May 2009 by Ryan Luis

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PFT: Does Pioli Not Have Final Say In Kansas City?

Last year, we expressed strong suspicion regarding whether Dolphins V.P. of football operations Bill Parcells genuinely surrendered “final say” over the roster to G.M. Jeff Ireland.

Absent Ireland receiving “final say” in his current job, the Cowboys would have been able to block Ireland from jumping from Dallas to Miami.

So now we’re intrigued by the same question as it relates to Parcells’ son-in-law, Chiefs G.M. Scott Pioli.

Unless Pioli truly has “final say” over the roster in Kansas City, the Patriots could have blocked Pioli from leaving. 

And while Cowboys owner Jerry Jones didn’t seem inclined to stand in Ireland’s way regardless of whether Parcells was (or still is) calling the shots, Pats owner Robert Kraft likely would have been a bit more aggressive about keeping Pioli on the payroll if Pioli wasn’t actually getting “final say.”

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11 May 2009 by Ryan Luis

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BR: Is Matt Cassel the Poor Man's Tom Brady or the Rich Man's Billy Volek?

The preseason PR story turned most coveted quarterback in the NFL. 

The second coming of Tom Brady? Not so fast.

There is no denying that Cassel was impressive last year.  As a regular season starter for the first time since high school, he led the Patriots to an 11-5 record on the year and posted back-to-back 400-yard passing games in weeks 11 and 12.

Even Tom Brady hasn't done that.

Want to know who has done that, though?

Billy Volek.

In 2004, Steve McNair struggled with injuries for the Tennessee Titans, giving Volek the opportunity to start eight games and play in 10.

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11 May 2009 by Ryan Luis

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