[Kansas City.com] Herm Edwards expected some frustrated players after the Chiefs’ three-game losing streak dropped them to 7-7 and on the verge of extinction in the playoff race.
He didn’t expect that one of them, running back Larry Johnson, would go so far as to publicly criticize the Chiefs for a lack of creative play-calling.
Edwards indicated Monday that those were the thoughts of only one player – an outspoken one at that – and not a sign that he’s losing his players as their season appears to be slipping away.
“Obviously, he’s frustrated,” Edwards said. “And there are a lot of frustrated players here. Coaches, too. We haven’t found a way to score points in the last couple of weeks. That’s the plan this week: Get some points on the board. That’s been our Achilles’ heel the last couple of weeks.”
The Chiefs have struggled to score points much of the time since Trent Green returned as their starting quarterback five games ago. They were held without a touchdown for the first time in that stretch in Sunday night’s 20-9 loss in San Diego, a game that led Johnson to stray from the company line.
He didn’t mention names, but his comments were obviously aimed at Edwards and the offensive coaches, including coordinator Mike Solari.
“We need to sit down and change something,” Johnson said. “This is getting ridiculous. Everybody is saying, Oh, it’s fine, it’s OK. I don’t know who in their mind thinks this is OK. This is nothing that’s OK. We need to change a lot of it. We need to sit down and change a lot. I’m getting tired of hearing that We’ll get ‘em next week’ speech. We need to really start sitting down and knowing what we need to do to put points on the board and what we need to do to do win games.”
“They need to fix it. I’m getting tired of this. It’s tough running against a brick wall until you break it open, you know? You see other teams do different things; you see different teams react differently. Like I said, you don’t have to bang your head against a brick wall hard enough to crack a hole in it. There are other ways of doing different things.”
Johnson said opposing defenses have made adjustments to what the Chiefs like to do and the Chiefs haven’t responded.
“When you do the same things over and over again, a good defense – they’re going to do things to stop you,” Johnson said. “If you don’t switch it up, if you don’t do different things, that’s how it goes. It’s a good defense. We played them a lot of weeks ago, and they see what we do on tape, you know, we never changed a bit of it, and that’s what happens.”
Edwards responded by saying the Chiefs’ offensive failings haven’t been because they’re too predictable.
“We’ve been putting ourselves in known situations, especially on passing downs, because we don’t make any significant yardage on first down,” he said. “It puts you in a pickle in second and third down. That’s happened some. Our inability to get in an offensive rhythm has hurt us.”
The Chiefs figure to play another low-scoring game Saturday night against the Raiders in Oakland. The Chiefs beat the Raiders 17-13 last month at Arrowhead Stadium by scoring one of their two touchdowns with a minute and a half remaining.