A local comeback story came to an end on Wednesday morning when Chiefs LB
“It’s a dream come true,” Simoneau said shortly after his signing.
Simoneau was injured in the first half of Sunday’s game while covering a kickoff on special teams. After absorbing a hit, Simoneau was escorted into the Chiefs locker room and did not suit out for the second half. Simoneau’s active status in Denver ended a span of 1,050 days (or 2 years, 10 months and 15 days) without a game appearance.
Cassel Not On Injury List
“In this profession you’re paid to play for 60 minutes and that’s what I was doing,” Cassel said. “It goes back to being a player and being competitive. I want to be out there every snap and until somebody tells me that I’m coming out I’ll be out there every single play.”
Cassel’s attitude was one of the deciding factors that convinced Haley to keep his quarterback in the game.
“Matt was in that group of guys that said, ‘I’m part of this and I want to end part of it. I’m part of why we are in this situation and I want to end part of it,’” Haley said. “I will always have great respect for the players that feel that way and feel strongly about it.”
With the gimp in his step to close out Sunday’s game, eyes were turned towards Cassel return to the practice field on Wednesday afternoon. There wasn’t much evidence of a lingering injury other than a last-place finish during warm-up jogging. Cassel went on to practicing with the team in full and did not appear on Kansas City’s injury report released later in the day.
Moeaki Misses; Lewis Returns; McCluster Unchanged; Waters Ailing
The Chiefs haven’t confirmed whether or not rookie TE Tony Moeki suffered a concussion last weekend in Denver, but they did note that his absence from Wednesday’s practice was due to a head injury. Moeaki suffered a hit to the head from Broncos LB Joe Mays while covering an onside kick and went on to have an unsightly fall as he attempted to get up from the hit. There’s no word as to whether or not Mays will be fined by the NFL for the hit.
Positive news on the injury front came in the form of rookie safety
To complete the rookie tri-fecta on Kansas City’s injury report, WR
Rounding out the Chiefs injury report is
Also of note is right tackle
Remember the 2007 season when the final pieces of the Chiefs once dominant offensive line fell apart? Would you rather forget?
Will Shields’ retirement was the final piece removed before a Jenga-like collapse occurred along the Chiefs offensive front. The Chiefs were aged across their offensive line and had three players starting that season who are no longer in the league today. Behind those starters were no viable prospects and the offensive production that season resembled a plunging stock after a poor earnings announcement.
Kansas City suffered through a 4-12 season that year. It was a bad season all around for the Red and Gold, but a sticking point was the offensive line becoming one of the oldest in the league and Chiefs quarterbacks getting sacked a league-high 55.0 times.
This year, Arizona has the NFL’s oldest offensive line and, like Kansas City in 2007, have yielded a league-high 33.0 sacks. The sack tally is uncharacteristically high for a team that has previously done a nice job in protecting a quarterback not known for his mobility. Arizona allowed just 26.0 sacks during all of 2009.
So what’s the problem in Arizona? Is the high sack number due to the retirement of future Hall of Fame QB Kurt Warner, or is it because the offensive line is just getting too old? Is there another factor involved? Here’s how Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt answer the question in his conference call with the Kansas City media on Wednesday…
“Obviously Kurt was very good at getting the ball out quick and he protected us a little bit,” Whisenhunt said. “When you look at the sack total a lot of times that goes on the offensive line and a lot of times it isn’t necessarily just the offensive line. We’ve had more than our share of mistakes by our backs when they’ve gone out in protection and a guy comes free. We’ve had tight ends getting beat four or five times that have led to sacks.
“It’s a combination of all those things,” Whisenhunt continued. “I don’t necessarily think that our line has gotten older, from that standpoint, I just think that we haven’t done a very good job overall offensively.”
As a whole, Arizona has struggled mightily on both sides of the football in 2010. The Cardinals rank 31st in total offense, 29th in rushing offense, 30th is passing offense, 30th in total defense, 28th is rushing defense, 27th in passing defense, 29th in turnover ratio, 23rd in points per game and 32nd in points allowed per game.
One-on-One: Haley and Whisenhunt
Whisenhunt spent a few minutes of his Wednesday afternoon conference call telling stories from when he and Haley had worked together in Arizona and New York. One of the stories involved Haley stranding Whisenhunt on a basketball court after the two got into a argument while playing in a pick-up basketball game.
“We used to play one-on-one basketball when we were in New York together and we had to drive over in a car because it was a little ways away,” Whisenhunt explained.” It wasn’t’ too far, but it was more comfortable riding over in the car. But there were a few times when we would get into arguments on the court and maybe throw the ball at each other and one of us would end up walking back rather than riding the car back with the other.”
Whisenhunt claims that his basketball skills reigned supreme over Haley during those one-on-one matchups in New York and the Arizona head coach went on to say that he and Haley have stayed close since Haley left Arizona for the head job in Kansas City.
“I was lucky to get the opportunity to get Todd in here,” Whisenhunt said. “When I got the job Todd was one of the guys that I wanted to bring in here as a coordinator because of the time we spent working together so long before. When we got that opportunity I was excited because I knew the type of coach that Todd was and he was a good fit for what we were trying to get done in Arizona.
“One of the great things about this business is the relationships that you build,” Whisenhunt continued. “I think that spending a year in the office with Todd; we became great friends. We did a lot of things together and our families are friends. When you come to Arizona and go through the experience that we did going to the Super Bowl, all that does is build that bond very strongly.”
The two have managed to talk football with one another even since they left the Jets. During Haley’s stay in Dallas, he and Whisenhunt (who was then in Pittsburgh) would catch-up on the phone every Friday afternoon.
“We’ve always been friends and I’m very thankful to have Todd as a friend and to have worked with him,” Whisenhunt said.