- Satanists to use Hobby Lobby rule to skirt state abortion laws
- White House: No choice but to act now on climate change
- HHS: ‘Donut hole’ reforms saved Medicare enrollees $11.5 billion since 2010
- Boston-area tornado rips 100 homes: ‘Are we in Kansas?’
- Rush Limbaugh: ‘There is no journalism anymore’
- Scott Brown struggles for political traction in New Hampshire Senate race
- California’s Jerry Brown cites God, ‘religious call’ to embrace illegals
- Hamid Karzai’s cousin killed by suicide bomber at Eid al-Fitr party
- Obama thanks Muslims for ‘building the very fabric of our nation’
- Israel flattens home of top Hamas leader, takes out power plant
Pioli prepares for third draft as Chiefs GM
Question of the Day
KANSAS CITY, MO. (AP) - Whenever somebody points to Tom Brady as proof of Scott Pioli’s genius for evaluating football talent, he points to someone else he took in that same New England draft of 2000.
While future Super Bowl MVP Brady had to wait until the sixth round for Pioli to call his name, Dave Stachelski waited only until round five.
A tight end out of Boise State, Stachelski stayed two years with the Patriots and caught exactly one pass for 5 yards. Brady, who could so easily have been picked off by another team, is hailed as one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history.
So, Pioli asks rhetorically, how smart was he really?
Smart enough, as he prepares for his third draft as general manager of the Chiefs, to stick with the formula that worked so well in a nine-year stint in New England while the Patriots grew into the NFL’s most dominant franchise and Pioli became one of the league’s most respected executives.
First, he will work to absorb every tidbit of information about every player the Chiefs might consider. He’ll be sure everyone else on his staff does the same. Then he’ll make sure the pre-draft meetings with scouts and coaches are filled with lively disagreement, that nobody is afraid to speak up.
The 45-year-old Pioli does not simply tolerate dissension in meetings. He insists on it.
“Some guys like to argue about anything up there just because it’s part of the mood,” Pioli said. “Arguing is probably too negative a word. I think what happens is, different people see things different ways, see players different ways. When different people sit down with the individual players, they can be involved in answering the same questions or hearing the same questions answered. They just have a different perception of where the player may be coming from or what they’re saying. The discussions range from the player’s ability, their athleticism, their production.”
Scouts and evaluators learn their opinions will always be valued.
“We want them to have their own opinions, and they understand and know it’s a healthy thing to disagree and it’s the same thing with the coaches,” Pioli said. “There’s never a feeling of intimidation or putting people down. I’ve seen and heard of places where when there are disagreements, they’ll either throw someone’s opinion out the window or they’ll talk a person down, be disrespectful. There’s no components of disrespect within our meetings.”
In 2009, the Chiefs used their No. 3 overall pick on LSU defensive end Tyson Jackson, who didn’t have much impact. In fact, the only ‘09 draftee who did much was Mr. Irrelevant, the last player selected: Kicker Ryan Succop was 25 for 29 for an 86.2 percent accuracy that was fifth best in team history.
Last year was much, much more satisfying to Chiefs fans. Six of the first seven players Pioli wound up selecting in his second draft as GM happened to be college team captains and many turned out to be good NFL players right away, including safety Eric Berry, tight end Tony Moeaki and the speedy Dexter McCluster.
Pioli has structured his scouting staff to include a mix of veteran and young.
“We want people to have opinions,” he said. “Last year was a perfect example. A couple of times there were some people in the leadership group who didn’t necessarily see players or a player a certain way. We asked them to play lawyer, so to speak, and have evidence why you disagree” _ and sometimes “we get convinced to go back and do more work.”
After the Chiefs won just two games under Herm Edwards the season before Pioli arrived, he drafted third overall in 2009. After winning four games in his first season here, Pioli’s Chiefs owned the No. 5 overall pick in 2010.
- GOP Senate candidate: Obama needs to visit Central America
- D.C. seeks to stay judge's order allowing gun owners to carry in public
- Hillary Clinton: Forget Obama, George W. Bush made her 'proud to be an American'
- Border surge puts Obama legacy on immigration at stake
- EPSTEIN: All IRS roads lead to the archivist
- Illegal immigrants demand representation in White House meetings
- Smugglers, rainstorm combine to poke holes in border fence
- Federal appeals court rules against Virginia's gay marriage ban
- PRUDEN: When the hangman botches the job
- Romney would win popular vote in rematch against Obama: CNN poll
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq