[Topeka Capital-Journal] Somebody made the mistake the other day of suggesting to new Chiefs safety Sammy Knight that many fans would be content if Kansas City could field a mere middle-of-the-pack defense in 2005.
To most people familiar with the sorry Chiefs defense — the NFL’s worst unit in pass defense last year, and second-to-worst in total defense — such a one-year improvement is a dream.
To Sammy Knight, however, the idea of playing on a merely mediocre defense is an insult.
“When I hear that it makes me sick to my stomach, it makes me want to throw up,” Knight countered.
“These guys are out here busting their (butts) expecting to be the top defense in the league,” Knight added. “That’s what we shoot for. Just like our offense is expected to be the top offense in the league, we expect to be the top defense. Anything less is uncivilized.”
Don’t suggest to newcomer Patrick Surtain, either, that the Chiefs should aspire to be a 16-to-20 finisher among NFL defenses.
“We don’t want to settle for being mediocre,” Surtain said. “I’ve played on some great defenses, and if you accept (being average), you’re going to play like that. You’ve got to want to be the best in your profession, and when guys take that attitude, the sky is the limit.”
“They brought us in to do a specific job, which is to lead this defense, and that will be a challenge,” Surtain added of the role he and Knight readily accept. “But with the guys they brought in (through free agency) and the guys they drafted, I think we’re on our way to changing the whole attitude of our defense.”
“If people put limitations on you, you will be limited,” he said. “That’s why we set our expectations at the highest level. We want to be the best.”