Todd Haley has his fans. He also has his detractors. Given the current record of the Chiefs at 1-3, it's natural for blame to be passed around and for fingers to start pointing. Unfortunately for Haley, many of the fingers have pointed at him as the cause for many of Kansas City's issues one quarter of the way through a miserable season.
Mike Lombardi of the NFL Network is the latest to take a shot at Haley as he specifically comments on the coach's emotional approach to the game. It was no secret that Haley would get in the face of his players, even as an assistant coach. But Lombardi thinks that Haley is 'wearing thin' on general manager Scott Pioli and says that Haley's approach is the opposite of what Pioli wants.
He writes, "This is Haley's third season as the Chiefs coach -- you would think he would have learned to handle his emotions and realize that the opponent is not on his sideline, but rather across the field. The more Haley screams, especially on Sunday when it embarrasses the players, the faster he is going to lose their attention and their will to play hard. If that happens, he will lose his team."
He also goes on to say that he feels bad for Pioli and that Haley acted like a "maniac" on Sunday in Haley's confrontation on the sidelines with Matt Cassel, the Chiefs quarterback. Interestingly enough, the Kansas City Star's Kent Babb wrote up a feature today saying that Haley's in-your-face style brings out the best in players, like it or not, and has quotes from Kurt Warner attributing his late career success to Haley pushing him to be better -- emotional or not.
There's no formula here, despite what Lombardi says, and it's easy to spin things one way or another. There's only one thing that will push Todd Haley out of Kansas City and that's if the Chiefs continue to win or lose. The emotions are a distraction to focus on, because if the Chiefs were 3-1, it would be because of their fiery coach.