KANSAS CITY, MO - JULY 10: National League All-Star Stephen Strasburg #37 of the Washington Nationals pitches in the fourth inning during the 83rd MLB All-Star Game at Kauffman Stadium on July 10, 2012 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
If the Royals were going to steal headlines from Chiefs training camp they had to do it big.
Kansas City Chiefs training camp is now a week old and there are not a whole lot of groundbreaking topics to discuss. But it is football which means that is still contains about 73 more story lines than the Royals current have. But the Royals are able to snatch the top spot but not for reasons they will like. Which is where we start on this week's Five-Orite Friday.
1. Can I get my Slushy in Royals blue?
Remember when I teased about the Royals making the news in the wrong kind of way earlier? Well, it turns out the Royals may not have used the most ethical practices when it came to the use of money from the Kauffman Stadium Repair and Upkeep fund. Kevin Kietzman of Sports Radio 810 WHB was the first to break this story and I suggest you read the full story.
When I first heard this story I was not exactly shocked. It;s partly because of the team/owners it involves and partly because it involves city politics. I don't know if all other sports teams across the country use similar tactics as the Royals but it's clear that the Royals are and that is all we have go on at this point. It appears to be legal but that does not make it right. It is not right for the Royals to use money from Jackson County taxpayers to pay off their own payroll tax. Man, the feel-good Royals stories just keep coming don't they?
2. Matt King of the Cassel:
In case you had any doubt who the QB of the Chiefs is Matt Cassel would you to check out exhibit A, himself. Cassel has not been the favorite son of Chiefs' fans but he is the best option they have. Brady Quinn gives the Chiefs what they lacked last season - depth at the quarterback position and a legitimate NFL QB who belongs on the field with other high level players. Tyler Palko was none of those last season for the team. I am still convinced that Palko might be actually right handed and he just doesn't know it yet. He should try it out someday.
Back to the QB position. The competition at this position is not an open one at all. Cassel has never had to battle or worry about his place on this team. The silver lining to the Chiefs inactivity with bringing in real competition for Cassel is that Cassel is looking pretty damn good. It is just training camp and they have not played a preseason game yet. But how worried would you be if Cassl was looking like crap in camp? I can answer that. Really freaking worried. But for the time being Cassel is showing who the #1 QB on this team is. He is putting a moat around the starting job and not allowing anyone to enter. So if you aren't a Cassel fan then I suggest you get those boo birds ready.
3. Rush Week:
Do you know who the last team was to win a Super Bowl the same year they had the #1 ranked rushing offense in the NFL? The answer is the 1985 Chicago Bears. Needless to say it does not happen that often but do not tell the Chiefs that. This rushing offense is going to be a force and it has a good chance of leading the league in rushing again thanks to four key reasons.
The first obviously is the running backs. Jamaal Charles is returning to the back field and he is joined by Peyton Hillis. These guy are two players who, last time they were both healthy, played a full season and rushed for a combined 2,644 yards in 2010. Another key cog to the rushing offense is the much talked about addition of Eric Winston at right tackle. The other day I was trying to remember who was the Chiefs starting right tackle in 2010 when they lead the NFL in rushing and made the playoffs. Then it finally hit me. It was Barry Richardson. Yes. That Barry Richardson. The one who quickly earned the nickname last season "the worst starting right tackle in the NFL." To put this in Breaking Bad terminology the Chiefs just traded in their RV for a Gustavo Fring super lab.
The fourth and final ingredient to cooking this batch of Chiefs rush offense is new offensive coordinator Brian Daboll. Last season while holding the same position for the Miami Dolphins Daboll was able to get Reggie Bush to rush for over a 1,000 yards for the first time in his career. I do not know what it takes to be qualified a miricle worker but Daboll should definitely include that on his application. With Daboll as the OC the Dolphins rush offense went from 21st in 2010 to 11th in 2011. And what was Daboll doing in 2010? Only being the OC of the Cleveland Browns where Peyton Hillis had his best year as a pro ever. Look for some quicker games by the Chiefs because they are going to be eating some clock.
4. Bowe Show opening postponed:
The reason why Dwayne Bowe's absence at training camp ranks this low is because it's not even a hold out. I mean, it is not like Bowe is holding out to get a new contract because he can't get one until after the season. There is a lot of hyperbole that starts flying around when a million dollar athlete does something like this. I will tell you this. I have no freaking clue what is or has ever gone through Dwayne Bowe's head. I can say all this B.S. about how if it were me I would do this and that but no one has ever paid me millions to do anything. I do not know what it feels like you have already made millions of dollars in my career. I have about 42 dollars to my name and that number only helps me if I am in a Douglass Adams book.
I have two fears with Bowe. First one is his health. The list is long of player who miss large portions of training camp and then miss games because of injury. Especially guys who use their legs for running quick short bursts. The second is how long it take Bowe to learn the new offense. Bowe is not known to be the best at lining up in the right spot and running the correct routes. Missing training camp when you already have that going against you and you have an entirely new offense is not the smartest play. Bowe will eventually report to camp and I look forward to seeing how quickly he gets up to speed on the offense.
5. A Brox Tale:
I will credit the Royals for appearing to make a good baseball trade at the deadline. They shipped off soon-to-be free agent Jonathan Broxton to the Cincinnati Reds for two pitching prospects - J.C. Sulbaran and Donnie Joseph. I use the word appear because we will not know the fruits this trade will bear for at least a year. The best thing I can say for the Royals is these two players do not profile out as a Vin Mazzaro or Sean O'Sullivan major league ready starting pitcher. In case you were wondering, major league ready pitcher is code for really crappy 4A pitcher.
But hey, at least Wil Myers is up with the big league club and tearing it up! Wait.....he is still in AAA? But Jeff Francoeur has been on the bench for the last 4 games? Am I not following? Are you messing with me? /face palm
Follow me on twitter @craig_a_brenner and until next week peace out.