Less than three weeks ago, the Kansas City Chiefs were considered to be one of the most talented young teams in football. Coming off a division title, the hype was building in KC. And although Matt Cassel and Dwayne Bowe and Brandon Flowers are important cogs in system, the majority of that hype was connected to a trio of young superstars (or at least superstars in the making).
They had 24-year-old Tony Moeaki, who emerged as a playmaker at tight end in his rookie season and was supposed to become Cassel’s favorite target in 2011. He’s a unique talent, and is irreplaceable in KC.
They had 22-year-old Eric Berry, who lived up to expectations as a No. 5 overall pick with a Pro Bowl rookie campaign and was supposed to move into the “elite safety” player category in 2011. He’s a unique talent, and is irreplaceable in KC.
And they had 23-year-old Jamaal Charles, who averaged a ridiculous 6.4 yards per rush in a monster 2010 season and was supposed to compete for a rushing title in 2011. He’s a unique talent, and is irreplaceable in KC.
In 18 days, it looks as though they’ve lost all three players for the entire season. Three torn ACLs in three games. Moeaki’s came first, in the final week of the preseason against Green Bay. Berry suffered his injury in Week 1 against Buffalo, and now Charles will undergo an MRI tomorrow to confirm what is believed to be another torn ACL, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
With key players dropping like flies, Todd Haley’s world is crumbling. The Chiefs have been outscored 89-10 in two games this year. Those two losses have come at the hands of two teams that won a combined 10 games in 2010.
So what did the Chiefs do to deserve such horrible luck? Did Haley smash a mirror while holding a black cat under an umbrella indoors? If the team is cursed, the jinx took place last December after Kansas City defeated the Titans to clinch their first AFC West crown since 2003. After that win, the Chiefs were crushed by Oakland in their finale and hammered by Baltimore in the wild-card playoffs.
In the four games they’ve played since wrapping up that division title last Boxing Day, KC has been outscored 150-27 (they were also 0-4 in the 2011 preseason).
What a league.