NFL Franchise Notes: Clark Hunt Becoming More Involved With Chiefs
In K.C., Sam Mellinger wrote Chiefs GM John Dorsey and coach Andy Reid report to Chair & CEO Clark Hunt now, "instead of the old way where the coach reported to the GM." This could be "the most significant football-related change Hunt ... has made since taking over" in '06. Like the decision to hire a coach before a GM, this is a "symbol of a man learning on the job, of self-evaluating mistakes and attempting to correct them." It is "a departure from how the organization has always run, ever since Clark’s father founded the team" in '60. Clark Hunt "saw the logic in hiring football men to run the football team and then stay out of the way." He "still sees the logic, which is why one of his challenges with this new setup is to be involved without being overbearing" (K.C. STAR, 7/30).
FEELING THE HEAT: In Detroit, Dave Birkett writes the hot seat for Lions GM Martin Mayhew and coach Jim Schwartz is "discernibly hotter than almost anywhere else in the NFL." Team ownership has been "more visible than usual through five days of training camp," with Owner William Clay Ford "watching a camp practice Friday for the first time since at least" '11, and Vice Chair Bill Ford Jr. at the facility on Sunday and Monday. The Lions have more than $175M in "player cash commitments on their books this fall, by far the most in the NFL" (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 7/31).
LET THE PAST BE THE PAST: ESPN's Hannah Storm was at Patriots training camp in Foxborough and said the Aaron Hernandez scandal "appears to be a world away from what's happening here. ... This team appearing extremely focused." Patriots Owner Robert Kraft, coach Bill Belichick and QB Tom Brady are the "pillars of the organization" and that could help the team be "able to withstand some of the events of the offseason." ESPN's Tedy Bruschi, a former Patriots LB, said, "In this organization, they all stay on the same page. They stay on the same message, most importantly, and the message now is moving on to this practice field and what they're doing here today in full pads and all the work that they're putting in" ("NFL Live," ESPN, 7/30).
PARTY LIKE IT'S 1999: In St. Louis, Jim Thomas notes the Rams are "breaking out their 1999 throwback uniforms twice this season." The team will wear the uniforms against the Titans and Buccaneers (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 7/31).