Remember the last time the Kansas City Chiefs were here. They were looking for their new head coach just three seasons ago and the rumors were flying about who exactly new general manager Scott Pioli would want to bring on as his first official head coach hire. Of course, the hopes then would that it was also his last. Alas, history (or rather, Scott Pioli) has not been so kind to Todd Haley.
The key to the current news that Haley has been fired as the head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs is to remember the timing of Pioli’s last big decision. Because the Arizona Cardinals went to the Super Bowl that season, Haley had to wait on his head coaching candidate to finish out his duties as offensive coordinator. Haley was hot property but the Chiefs could not officially interview and consequently hire their new head coach until February. That’s a death knell when trying to assemble the rest of the staff.
In the end, Pioli got his man in Haley but the rest of the staff suffered, and they have been ever since. Clancy Pendergast was the defensive coordinator. Haley served as his own offensive coordinator. The moves clearly didn’t work and the team went into overdrive the next year trying to find the right coordinators.
Not this time. Now that Haley has been fired with several games left in the regular season, as well as the playoffs, the Chiefs will now have a chance to fill out their coaching staff completely with plenty of time to make smart decisions and hope that they stick over time. If they are forced to wait, it will be because they wanted to wait on a coaching candidate. Instead of picking from leftovers of other teams, they will now have the best choice.
If there’s any perks to Haley’s firing, it’s this whole issue of timing. While Haley deserved better, the reality is that the team is now best positioned to find its new head coach. That’s something that Pioli could not have said the first time around.