[Kansas City.com] The Chiefs had all this figured out long before Trent Green returned from his severe concussion. He would reclaim his starting quarterback spot, play like the Green of before and lead his team on its charge to a playoff spot.
Obviously, the Chiefs now realize, they had a few things wrong. They’ve lost three straight and scored one measly touchdown in the last two games. Though mathematically alive at 7-7, they have been elbowed out of any kind of strategic position for a wild-card playoff berth.
The Chiefs aren’t pointing to Green as the only suspect in their demise. But they’ve started to wonder whether instead of being part of the solution, he’s part of the problem.
At the least, Green may be playing his way out of an unquestioned starting spot for next season. Damon Huard is scheduled to become a free agent and will probably move on, but rookie Brodie Croyle is a favorite of coach Herm Edwards and is, sooner or later, destined to become the Chiefs’ starter.
Edwards probably won’t give the job to Croyle outright next season, but he may open the competition. One of Edwards’ goals after joining the Chiefs last January was to energize his team by going with younger players.
Replacing the 36-year-old Green with Croyle is one way to further that process.
In that sense, Green could be playing for his Kansas City future in the season’s final two games beginning Saturday night against the Raiders in Oakland.
Edwards artfully dodged questions about Green’s culpability in the Chiefs’ offensive problems. But his failure to defend Green, as he was willing to do in the games shortly after his return from the concussion, seems to speak loudly.
“He’s trying to make plays,” Edwards said diplomatically. “When you’re playing against good defenses, you feel like you’ve got to make a play. At times, we’ve tried to do that and we haven’t.”
Green has certainly been affected by a number of problem areas around him. The Chiefs can’t block for him as well as they once did. Their running game hasn’t been as consistent as it once was. Their defense hasn’t made the significant progress Edwards hoped it would by this point in the season.
Still, the Chiefs have long maintained the best way to judge a quarterback is by his won-lost record. The Chiefs are 2-4 with Green as their starter and 5-3 under Huard.
They scored 30 or more points in four of Huard’s starts but in none of Green’s. They looked truly comfortable offensively for only part of one game under Green’s command, that being the first three quarters of a recent loss in Cleveland.