2014 DRAFT GUIDE
All-in already: Chiefs gamble on quick turnaround

    2013-07-27 09:34

Updates with quotes, details.
By DAVE SKRETTA
AP Sports Writer

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) - John Dorsey considers himself conservative by nature. He's willing to take a few calculated gambles, sure, but he doesn't like risks. He'd rather put his money on the sure thing.

It's a philosophy that served him well during his time in Green Bay, where he helped piece together draft classes that consistently kept the Packers in playoff contention. It's an approach that he intends to follow now that he's the general manager of the Kansas City Chiefs, too.

After inheriting a downtrodden franchise that finished 2-14 last season, Dorsey set about orchestrating a near-unprecedented turnover in personnel. Veterans such as Eric Winston and Steve Breaston were let go, replaced through a mixture of trades, free agency and the draft.

Now, after getting a glimpse of the payoff during the Chiefs' offseason program, Dorsey is getting to see his rebuilt team for real this weekend during the start of training camp.

``The guys you brought in here, now that you're around them, you get a good sense that they're starting to understand that being a professional means something,'' Dorsey said during an interview with The Associated Press before arriving at Missouri Western State University.

``It means taking ownership,'' Dorsey explained, ``and doing the little things - `My locker-mate is doing it.' So you're creating a goal with guys moving forward with the same mindset and objectives. That's what a team is all about.''

The team that the Chiefs are putting on the practice field this fall will bear such little resemblance to the one of last season that most fans will need a roster sheet.

Not that they'll complain. Who wants to see the same guys who had the NFL's worst record?

Certainly not Dorsey, nor new coach Andy Reid, who worked hand-in-hand with the GM to upgrade the roster. Quarterbacks Matt Cassel and Brady Quinn were jettisoned and the Chiefs' new brain trust swung a trade with the 49ers to land Alex Smith, giving them a fresh face under center and possibly some stability at the position for the first time in years.

Yet the trade was only the first of many calculated risks that Dorsey made this offseason - after all, are the Chiefs getting the Smith that went 13-3 a couple of years ago, or the former No. 1 draft pick who was an utter flop his first five seasons in the league?

When the draft rolled around, Dorsey had his pick of offensive tackles with the first overall selection. He went with Central Michigan's Eric Fisher over Texas A&M's Luke Joeckel, picking the guy with more perceived upside over the more polished product.

One of the Chiefs' third-round picks, tight end Travis Kelce, was suspended in college for a failed drug test Fifth-round pick Sanders Commings was suspended at Georgia after he was charged with simple battery and domestic violence. Quarterback Tyler Bray left Tennessee early, but some questions about his character left him signing with Kansas City as an undrafted free agent.

So, yes, Dorsey is taking some risks. But he's carefully considered each of them.

``Each one of these guys I've sat down and met with them one-on-one. I'm pretty good with finding out what makes people tick,'' he said. ``And I know in their heart of hearts, they want to be good. They understand the team model, they want to work, and that's all you can ask for.''

In the wake of the Aaron Hernandez case, NFL teams will undoubtedly take a closer look at acquiring players with checkered pasts. But in assembling this year's team, Dorsey believes that the guys he's brought into Chiefs training camp have matured since their transgressions.

``I got in trouble once in college and it was really just an unfortunate situation,'' said Commings, who could be out for a while after breaking his left collarbone on the first day of camp. ``I learned that I need to surround myself with people who bring out the best in me.''

Bray said that failing to get drafted, embarrassing as it may have been, left him hungry to be a better player on the field and a better person away from it.

``You come into college and new experiences, you're living on your own, not living with your parents, you can kind of mess up sometimes,'' he said. ``I'm done with all the dumb stuff.''

Dorsey is convinced that's the case, just as he's convinced free agents such as Sean Smith and Dunta Robinson can bolster a defensive backfield that struggled so mightily last season, and that Smith can pull the strings for an offense that rarely found the end zone a year ago.

``Risk taker? No. Am I conservative? Yeah. Am I a little aggressive? Yeah, I'll be a little aggressive,'' Dorsey said, ``but you take your shots at the right time.''

Might as well take a few bold shots right from the start.

The result already has been a level of expectations far higher than most teams that scuffled to a 2-14 finish the previous year. National pundits believe they can make a run at the Broncos in the AFC West, and just maybe pull off another Colts-like turnaround and make the playoffs.

All of that will wash out over the coming weeks and months, though, and the dozens of moves that Dorsey has made will be judged as flawed risks or successful gambles.

``I'm on the honeymoon period. We haven't lost a game yet. I'm smart enough to understand that,'' Dorsey said, leaning forward in his chair as if to emphasize his point.

``I'm never content,'' he added. ``Even if we win the Super Bowl, I won't be content. At the end of the day, what you're measured with is if you leave this place better. You have to establish a tradition, of sustaining on a year-in and year-out basis winning football teams. To me, then you've done your job. I'll never be satisfied with the one-year fix.''

---

AP NFL site: http://pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Captain MunnerlynAug 20 09:58a

After starting the season sharing No. 1 duties with Josh Robinson, Minnesota Vikings CB Captain Munnerlyn appears to have won the starting left corner job outright. Robinson has missed [ More ]

Jerrel JerniganAug 20 09:20a

New York Giants WRs Victor Cruz, Rueben Randle, Jerrel Jernigan and Mario Manningham have not made many big plays this preseason. Cruz initially caught a long play-action pass Saturday, [ More ]

Brian HoyerAug 20 08:53a

Cleveland Browns QB Brian Hoyer has been named the starting quarterback over QB Johnny Manziel. Head coach Mike Pettine wrote the announcement in an e-mail and said Manziel made [ More ]

Lance BriggsAug 20 08:43a

Chicago Bears LB Lance Briggs (knee), OG Brian de la Puente (knee), OG Eben Britton (hamstring) and CB Isaiah Frey (hamstring) missed practice Tuesday, Aug. 19. TE Dante Rosario [ More ]

Jordan MillsAug 20 08:23a

Chicago Bears OT Jordan Mills (foot) is in danger of missing Week 1. He has worn a walking boot sporadically throughout camp after January surgery to repair a broken metatarsal in his left foot.

Santonio HolmesAug 20 05:33a

The Chicago Bears and WR Santonio Holmes reached agreement on a minimum salary benefit contract for Holmes that offers no guaranteed money. Holmes signed with the Bears on Saturday, [ More ]

Colt LyerlaAug 20 01:33a

Updating a previous report, Green Bay Packers TE Colt Lyerla (knee), who was waived/injured Tuesday, Aug. 19, could move to fullback in the future, according to tight ends coach [ More ]

Alterraun VernerAug 20 12:03a

Tampa Bay Buccaneer CB Alterraun Verner (hamstring) returned to practice Tuesday, Aug. 19, but head coach Lovie Smith said he may not play in the team's preseason game Sunday, Aug. 24.

Mike DevitoAug 20 12:03a

Kansas City Chiefs DT Mike DeVito (hand) and DE Mike Catapano (illness) returned to practice Tuesday, Aug. 19. Catapano worked with the first-team during pass-rushing drills.

Colt LyerlaAug 19 11:43p

Green Bay Packers TE Colt Lyerla (knee) will likely be placed on Injured Reserve after he clears waivers, according to Lyerla's agent, Vinnie Porter. 'So to put him on [ More ]

Jerome SimpsonAug 19 11:33p

Minnesota Vikings WR Jerome Simpson said Tuesday, Aug. 19, that he told the truth when he met with NFL hearings officer Harold Henderson to appeal a three-game suspension stemming [ More ]

Brandon LloydAug 19 10:23p

San Francisco 49ers WR Brandon Lloyd has developed a bond with WR Anquan Boldin and is in good position to make the final 53-man roster.

Tyler WilsonAug 19 10:23p

Cincinnati Bengals RB Rex Burkhead (knee), CB Darqueze Dennard (hip), TE Tyler Eifert (shoulder), DE Wallace Gilberry (undisclosed), DE Dontay Moch (undisclosed), OL Mike Pollak (knee), WR Dane Sanzenbacher [ More ]

Nick CollinsAug 19 10:23p

Free-agent S Nick Collins (Packers) officially announced his retirement from the NFL Tuesday, Aug. 19, on his official Twitter account.

Kenjon BarnerAug 19 10:13p

The Philadelphia Eagles acquired RB Kenjon Barner from the Carolina Panthers Tuesday, Aug. 19, for a conditional seventh-round pick in 2015.

Andre SmithAug 19 10:13p

Cincinnati CB Dre Kirkpatrick (hip), LB Sean Porter (knee) and OT Andre Smith (concussion) returned to practice Tuesday, Aug. 19.

D.J. HaydenAug 19 10:03p

Oakland Raiders CB D.J. Hayden (foot) will be placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list next week if the team doesn't believe he will healthy enough to start [ More ]

Sammy WatkinsAug 19 09:33p

Buffalo Bills WR Sammy Watkins (ribs) returned to practice on a limited basis Tuesday, Aug. 19. Watkins said he could play in a game, but head coach Doug Marrone [ More ]

Dimitri PattersonAug 19 09:13p

New York Jets CB Dimitri Patterson (leg) said he hopes to play in the team's preseason game Friday, Aug. 22, and said there is 'no doubt' he will be [ More ]

Darnell DockettAug 19 09:13p

Arizona Cardinals DE Frostee Rucker will have the first shot at replacing DT Darnell Dockett (knee), and he will start in Dockett's position at practice Wednesday, Aug. 20. DE [ More ]

Jake LongAug 19 09:03p

St. Louis Ram OT Jake Long (knee), LB James Laurinaitis (ankle), DE Michael Brockers (ankle) and CB Janoris Jenkins (undisclosed) could all play in the team's preseason game Saturday, Aug. 23.

Champ BaileyAug 19 08:43p

New Orleans Saints DE Akiem Hicks (undisclosed) and CB Champ Bailey (undisclosed) were held out of team drills during practice Tuesday, Aug. 19.

Glenn DorseyAug 19 08:33p

San Francisco 49ers DT Glenn Dorsey (biceps) will have one more MRI to see how his torn bicep is healing before the team decides if he can return at some point this season.

Ben GrubbsAug 19 08:33p

New Orleans Saints OG Ben Grubbs (undisclosed) and WR Brandin Cooks (illness) missed practice Tuesday, Aug. 19. Cooks is dealing with a stomach virus, and Grubbs left practice early [ More ]

Casey HaywardAug 19 08:23p

Green Bay Packers CB Casey Hayward (undisclosed) was limited in practice Tuesday, Aug. 19. Head coach Mike McCarthy said the move was precautionary because of his injury history. Hayward [ More ]

Steven JacksonAug 19 07:43p

Atlanta Falcons RB Steven Jackson (hamstring) and OT Gabe Carimi (ankle) did not practice Tuesday, Aug. 19.

Brett KeiselAug 19 06:13p

The Pittsburgh Steelers and free-agent DE Brett Keisel (Steelers) have agreed to an undisclosed deal, according to a source.

Pat DevlinAug 19 05:43p

The Miami Dolphins placed QB Pat Devlin (hamstring) on no-recall waivers from Reserve/Injured with an injury settlement.

Rodger SaffoldAug 19 05:33p

St. Louis Rams DT Michael Brockers (ankle), OT Rodger Saffold (neck), FB Kadeem Jones (undisclosed) and SS Matt Daniels (ankle) returned to practice Tuesday, Aug. 19.

Dimitri PattersonAug 19 05:03p

New York Jets CB Dimitri Patterson (leg), C Nick Mangold and RB Chris Ivory returned to practice Tuesday, Aug. 19.

Marcus GilbertAug 19 04:53p

Pittsburgh Steelers OT Marcus Gilbert has signed a six-year contract extension. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Josh GordonAug 19 04:43p

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon could have shown more effort on a couple plays during the team's Monday night game against the Washington Redskins, according to head coach Mike Pettine.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group