View Full Version : "Arrowhead Anxiety"

01-16-2012, 01:23 AM
I found this to be a fascinating read on the culture Scott Pioli has put in place in Kansas City. I didn't have much of an opinion on Pioli before reading the article, but this seems like a terrible way to run a business. There's much more to the article than just what I posted below.

Todd Haley walked into the public relations office at Chiefs headquarters on a Thursday in early December. Four days before he was fired as the team’s coach, he wanted to talk about what life was like inside this organization. But he didn’t know who else might be listening.Looking up toward the ceiling, he darted into a back hallway before hesitating. Then he turned around, going back through a door and stopping again. Haley suspected that many rooms at the team facility were bugged so that team administrators could monitor employees’ conversations. Stopping finally in a conference room, Haley said he believed his personal cellphone, a line he used before being hired by the Chiefs in 2009, had been tampered with.

Paranoid? The Chiefs have adamantly denied that they tap phones or listen in on conversations. But as the team enters another period of transition after elevating defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel last week to head coach, interviews with more than two dozen current and former employees suggest that intimidation and secrecy are among the Chiefs’ principal management styles — and that Haley wasn’t the only one with paranoid thoughts.

“When you’re mentally abused, you eventually lose it, too,” one former longtime Chiefs executive said.

Since Scott Pioli was hired as general manager in January 2009, life for many inside the Chiefs’ front office has been marked by massive staff turnover, fear and insecurity about how closely they are watched. Numerous current and former staffers paint a picture of constant worry — and, in a few cases, of alleged age discrimination. Three former department heads sued the Chiefs in 2011, though the team has denied wrongdoing.
Clark Hunt, the team’s chairman and CEO, rejected the notion that Arrowhead is a difficult place to work, but he said there has been an emphasis placed on responsibility. Change, he said, is often uncomfortable.
“We needed a culture that pursued excellence,” he said. “One that valued honesty and integrity, one where the employees would be held accountable.”

Stability has been another matter. In the last three years, more than half the workforce has turned over, and the vast majority of senior staff members are no longer with the team. As dozens have left the organization, with some of the holdovers and new hires trying to adapt to what many described as a restrictive working environment, dread has permeated the franchise.

“The level of paranoia was probably the highest that I had ever seen it anywhere,” another former high-ranking staffer said. “… If you make the wrong step, you might not be able to pay your mortgage.”

Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/2012/01/14/3371495/arrowhead-anxiety-turnover-off.html#storylink=cpy

01-16-2012, 01:45 AM
Oh brother. This tidbit makes it sound like these people are being held prisoner or something.

01-16-2012, 01:52 AM
Worst of all, he still thinks Cassel is the answer at QB!

01-16-2012, 02:00 AM
Jason Whitlock, eat your heart out.

01-16-2012, 02:31 AM

01-16-2012, 03:13 AM
Cassel/Orton won't get this team to the playoffs next year.

01-16-2012, 05:57 AM
I don't get it.

01-16-2012, 09:14 AM
Cassel/Orton won't get this team to the playoffs next year.

They're in the AFC West, where they are going to face one of the easiest schedules in the NFL. If it worked for Denver, it can work for KC too.

edit: It did work for KC already. See 2010.

Every year in the NFL 1 team that was last goes to 1st and 1 team that was 1st goes to last. This (next) year will probably be the Colts and Broncos (and maybe Chiefs). In 2011, it was the Broncos and Colts.

A Perfect Score
01-16-2012, 09:25 AM

Yeah, I bet that phone was tapped...

01-16-2012, 09:30 AM

Yeah, I bet that phone was tapped...

It's not his fault Pioli tried to brainwash him with inhuman quantities of LSD.

01-16-2012, 10:24 AM
I read the entire article and idk, I'm not really convinced it's as bad as people are making it out to be. If you get fired from a job by someone you don't like why would you say anything but the worst thing you can to a reporter?

01-16-2012, 10:40 AM
I saw the bit you posted, then was surprised when I saw it was Kent Babb's work. He's a fairly neutral journalist. I read most of the article, and it just sounds like a disgruntled employee and if you do read the whole article, Kent Babb is pretty fair and you can learn a little about how Pioli operates and why it's a good thing he does things the way he does...

But, unfortunately, people are going to run with the negative part of the article (ESPECIALLY the radio turds). I don't know if those people really don't understand that the way Pioli does things is about the same as the successful teams over the last decade+ (Steelers, Colts, Pats, Packers, Ravens), or if they do understand and are just trying to sell air time. I'm guessing they don't understand because they really are ******** when it comes to sports, football in particular.

01-16-2012, 09:06 PM
Cassel/Orton won't get this team to the playoffs next year.

None of the other teams in the division are very good. If the Chiefs play defense at or even slightly below the level they did under Crennel the offense doens't have to be that good. Jamaal Charles back will make a big difference and Cassel is better then Orton.

I think it's pretty close between them, San Diego and Oakland. Denver a little behind.

01-16-2012, 09:53 PM
KC needs to be classy and stop with the mind games. At least label which phone is tapped!


01-16-2012, 10:24 PM
IMO, replacing a lot of old staff who owed their jobs to the previous regime, is a normal consequence when you bring in a new GM after many years under the old management team. He wants his own people who he handpicked. Nothing unusual about that.
However, he hired Haley and it is well known that they didn't get along. So there may be more to the story than we think.

KC will probably be competitive next year because IMO, Crennel is a solid hire for the short term, of course that depends on injuries because if they suffer the same amount of injuries to key personnel that they did this year, they'll stink again.

And who is their future HC because I believe Crennel is something like 67 and not a long term answer.