The Kansas City Chiefs' opening at head coach is the "tidiest" of all of the possibilities in the NFL at this point, a group that also includes the Miami Dolphins, Tampa Buccaneers and St. Louis Rams. So says Sports Illustrated's Don Banks, who believes that it should be rather easy to predict what Scott Pioli will do as Chiefs GM because he will likely stay close to the coaching tree with which he is most familiar.
"The Chiefs' coaching scenario seems the most tidy of all, and of course, the NFL is rarely tidy, so it probably can't happen the way we're envisioning," writes Banks. "But here goes: Win or lose Sunday at Denver for Romeo Crennel (although a win and a 2-1 interim head coaching record makes the rationale a much easier sell), there's a pretty good shot he gets elevated to the full-time gig. League sources then expect Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli to go out and hire Rams offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels to the same post in Kansas City, with the expectation that McDaniels will be let go when Spagnuolo is canned.
"Pioli will then have made his own locker room very happy with the retention of the popular Crennel," he continues, "who he likes and greatly respects, but also will have put in a place a succession plan with the arrival of McDaniels, who could use another couple seasons to let the radioactivity from his failed Denver head coaching tenure die down. Crennel is 64, and gives Pioli a trusted short-term coaching option. McDaniels is 35, and gives Pioli a trusted long-term coaching option."
The idea of Josh McDaniels being groomed as the long-term replacement for Crennel would take a major sell job on the franchise's part, since McDaniels has failed at every turn since he left New England in the first place. After all, if a player is continually filled with potential and promise and every other words insinuating that they haven't yet performed to expectations, then you eventually cut ties with that player and a word like "prospect" is no longer used. McDaniels is nearing that level himself.