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Derrick Thomas Elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Class of 2009

The Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee announced on Saturday that the late LB Derrick Thomas has been elected to the Hall of Fame’s Class of 2009. The Class of 2009 will be enshrined in Canton, Ohio on Sunday, August 8th. Thomas becomes the 10th member of the Chiefs to be enshrined in Canton. He joins fellow linebackers Bobby Bell (Class of ‘82) and Willie Lanier (Class of ‘86) in Canton.
31 Jan 2009 by ChiefsFan4Life

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AP: Derrick Thomas turned Chiefs into winners

In this Nov. 12, 1989, file photo, Kansas City Chiefs linebacker ...

When Air Force jets roared over Arrowhead Stadium in patriotic pregame ceremonies, it used to mean big trouble for visiting quarterbacks.

Derrick Thomas, the son of a pilot lost in Vietnam during Operation Linebacker II, always seemed quicker, bolder and even more punishing on those days. That's when Kansas City's great pass-rushing linebacker would summon every ounce of his talent.

Those skills carried Thomas, who died in 2000, into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday.

"I always think of my dad when I see the military planes," the 6-foot-3, 245-pounder once said. "It makes me feel sad that I had to grow up without him. But I guess it also gets my adrenaline going. I dedicate the game to him, and I want to do my best for him."

The first time Chiefs fans witnessed this phenomenon was on Veterans Day 1990. An unstoppable Thomas got his hands on Seattle's Dave Krieg nine times that afternoon and sacked him seven, an NFL record that still stands.

That game signaled to the league that long-woeful Kansas City was no longer a sad collection of flops and also-rans.

An Alabama All-American and the first player drafted by new general manager Carl Peterson in 1989, Thomas energized a franchise turnaround that catapulted Kansas City into perennial contender status. Before dying of injuries sustained in a one-car accident, Thomas would smash team records for sacks, safeties, fumble recoveries and forced fumbles.

"Derrick was one of those rare players there aren't many that an offense has to be aware of every time the ball is snapped," said Gunther Cunningham, who was either defensive coordinator or head coach for most of Thomas' 11 seasons in KC.

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31 Jan 2009 by Ryan Luis

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Chiefs' new coach should try to avoid extremes

The buzz around Kansas City has been about the end of the Peterson and Edwards era.
Everyone obviously has an opinion about the downfall of a once-proud franchise. I believe Herm Edwards was doomed from the start. He tried to be a loyal soldier, but he was working uphill with little hope during his entire stay in Kansas City.
I believe the real problem was with Carl and his arrogant approach. Carl should have gone when Dick Vermeil retired. The rebuilding process should have begun at that time.
Scott Pioli and whoever he chooses to hire will have to dig out of the huge hole left by Peterson. Pioli is the right guy to run the franchise.
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31 Jan 2009 by Ryan Luis

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Chiefs’ Thomas faces tough competition for Hall of Fame

From the day he retired as the NFL’s all-time sack leader, Buffalo Bills defensive end Bruce Smith punctuated his autographs with “HOF 2009.”

Today, Smith’s prediction will come true with his election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. In fact, it could be a big day for pass rushers as several other sack masters are on the final ballot, including the late Derrick Thomas of the Chiefs; former Super Bowl MVP Richard Dent of the Chicago Bears; Minnesota’s John Randle, who holds the all-time sack record for defensive tackles; and Atlanta/Philadelphia defensive end Claude Humphrey, one of the two senior nominees.

A minimum of four and a maximum of seven will be elected today, including no more than five players from the modern era. This is the fifth year of eligibility for Thomas, who had 126 1/2 sacks in his 11-year career, including a league-high 20 in 1990, and a NFL single-game record of seven, also in 1990.

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31 Jan 2009 by Ryan Luis

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NFL Mocks, Chiefs Draft Needs

Positional Needs: DE, MLB, C, T, QB, OLB

The Chiefs had a rough two win season that resulted in the departure of long-time President/CEO/King Carl Peterson and Head Coach Herm Edwards. Highly rated GM Scott Pioli was brought in from New England to take over.

To the casual observer, going from a four win season in 2007 to a two win season in 2008 it would appear that the Chiefs are trending downwards. However, the opposite is the case as the 2008 draft brought in several talented youngsters like Branden Albert, Brandon Flowers, Brandon Carr and Glenn Dorsey. The good news is that much of the foundation has been laid. The bad news is that quite a bit more work needs to be done for the Chiefs to be a contender.

As of this writing, the Chiefs do not have a head coach. So, this evaluation is based on more or less a continuation of the current direction. It will be revised should a new regime decide to make major changes like trading Tony Gonzalez, Larry Johnson or changing to a 3-4 defense.

Looking at the Chiefs this year, the Chiefs have no pass rush, a poor right side of the offensive line and a linebacker corps in shambles. Hence, why almost all of the listed needs focus on those areas. Finding an effective pass rusher is the biggest need.

With so many holes to fill, I am hoping Scott Pioli makes a sizable play in the free agency market. Terrell Suggs would top my wish list, should he actually hit free agency. Filling the DE, a LB need and the RT need would be a major shot in the arm. This would also allow the Chiefs to focus their draft board more.

The status of Tyler Thigpen as the starting quarterback is one of the major decisions a new head coach will make. Outside of Matt Stafford, I do not see a quarterback worth taking with the #3 pick. I expect him to go to Detroit with the #1 pick. I can see a quarterback selected in rounds four or five.

Without any free agency signings, I expect the Chiefs to approach the draft with the following strategy. The dream would be for a stud pass rusher to be on the board at #3. However, this draft appears to lack such a player. I can see the Chiefs looking to move into the second half of the top ten of the draft. However, we can not assume such a trade will be made. Trading into the top five is a very expensive proposition both in terms of money and surrendered picks. For example, the Raiders at #7 are very lacking at the WR position. Putting aside the rivalry between the teams, a trade up to #3 to get in front of Seattle in order to take Michael Crabtree makes some sense. However, a fair trade, based on the existing trade chart, would call for a 2nd and 3rd round picks this year in addition to pick #7. Would the Raiders trade that or pick #7, and second round picks this year and next year to move up four spots? With crazy Al, who knows, but it’s a stretch to count on it.

In the first round, the Chiefs can justify going in a number of directions. An impact defensive player like Aaron Curry or Rey Maualuga could be the choice here. Drafting another offensive tackle is another logical area to pursue. The Chiefs could surprise and go QB or for a purely value pick like Michael Crabtree.

When you get to the second round, the options open up even more. I can see any of the listed needs going in round two. When you are near the top of round two, your best strategy is to see what first round talent falls to your pick. One or more first round talent always does, like it did last year with Brandon Flowers. Players I am looking at in round two include centers Alex Mack and Max Unger, defensive ends Michael Johnson and Robert Ayers as well as linebackers Clint Sintim and Brian Cushing.

30 Jan 2009 by Denglen

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ESPN Hires Herm Edwards

Herm Edwards was unemployed for six days. The Chiefs canned him last Friday and today, ESPN hired him. His ability to coach to win the game has taken some hits in recent seasons (Kansas City mustered six wins the last two years), but he's as charismatic as ever. And lucky for us, ESPN has recently started to consider such qualities when hiring on-air talent.
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29 Jan 2009 by Ryan Luis

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Post: Some Think Cardinals' Haley Is in Mix to Be Chiefs' Coach

There is growing sentiment within the league that Cardinals offensive coordinator Todd Haley will be a candidate for the vacant head coaching job in Kansas City.

Newly hired Chiefs GM Scott Pioli fired Herman Edwards as the team's coach Friday.

There have been conflicting reports about whether the Chiefs might hire Mike Shanahan, who was recently dismissed as Broncos coach. It also has been thought that Pioli might hire a college coach, Kirk Ferentz of Iowa.

Another possibility, some in the league said, could be Vikings defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier, who was thought to be a contender for several head coaching jobs in recent weeks but wasn't hired.

· RAVENS: Baltimore promoted linebackers coach Greg Mattison to defensive coordinator. He succeeds Rex Ryan, who left to become head coach of the Jets.

The Ravens announced the move yesterday afternoon. Coach John Harbaugh also promoted special assistant Vic Fangio to linebackers coach and gave the title of assistant head coach to special teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg.

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28 Jan 2009 by Ryan Luis

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BR: "Larry" Who?

The first order of business for whoever the new head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs will be is to get rid of Larry Johnson.

Johnson has never been a true Chief since he stepped foot off the bus. Yes, he has put up good numbers in the past few years, but he was far from being a leader.

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28 Jan 2009 by Ryan Luis

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