Crennel is a key addition in Kansas City
I like what the Kansas City Chiefs are doing with quick work here as they descend on the offseason.
Last week, it was Charlie Weis, a proven offensive play caller who’s had success with quarterbacks at both the NFL and college level.
I commented on the hiring of Weis after it happened and said it was the first step for head coach Todd Haley in becoming the true head coach of this football team -- giving away the play calling duties and using his role to focus on the entire team.
Well, that became even more of a reality when the news broke today that former Browns head coach and New England defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel had accepted an offer to run the defensive side of the football for the Chiefs.
Adding yet another piece to this coaching tree in Kansas City. Sure, we can joke that — along with GM Scott Pioli — the “gang” is getting back together with the number of former Patriots employees under Bill Belichick now sporting red and white sideline gear, but when you really look at it, they’re putting together a group that’s credible — and that’s a good sign for K.C. fans.
Let’s be honest: The Chiefs’ defense was atrocious at times in the ’09 season. Questioning talent is one thing, and although they were young, talent never seems to be the ultimate difference at the NFL level because it’s everywhere — and everyone has it. But the fundamental football that was displayed on defense — the tackling, getting off blocks, running to the football, knowing the responsibilities of the defensive scheme — was poor.
Can Crennel change that? Of course he can, and we have to remember that Crennel is not some castoff coach. Like Weis, he has head coaching experience. And according to reports, the Chiefs weren’t the only horse in the race for Crennel’s services as a coordinator. Add the Giants, Broncos, Dolphins and Bills to the list.
He was a wanted name because he can coach defense, just as Weis can coach offense. Crennel is schemed in the 3-4 front, and although he will coach differently than Clancy Pendergast in K.C., the foundation is there for him to succeed.
It will be an eye-opening experience for the players who do return to the Chiefs — along with draft picks and free-agent acquisitions — when the team opens its spring practices with both Weis and Crennel. Whatever was taught in the past will be flipped, and whatever they thought was acceptable and conducive to winning will be replaced by new voices and new ways to practice.
Some players like change and welcome new opportunities when it comes to coaching. Others might resist, but with two new top dogs calling the plays on both sides of the ball, they won’t last long.
Romeo Crennel is being brought in to change the defensive culture in Kansas City, and after going 4-12 in ’09, there’s no reason those players shouldn’t want to be coached hard and coached to win.
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For more on Crennel's new job in KC, check out this story from Bleacher Report.