The Angriest Todd in the World

On A Particular American Way of Failure
Share |

I fantasized about firing Todd Haley, even before the Chiefs got 2 close 2 my fantasy last week. I am not alone in this, although I don’t have the excuse of being a Kansas City Chiefs fan. I don’t think I saw more than three games worth of Haley’s coaching during his three seasons in charge at Arrowhead, but that didn’t prevent me from being captivated by what a tool he seemed to be. In fact, those brief glimpses of Haley cultivated a medium-strong contempt for Todd Haley, a rewarding, self-propelled, amusing kind of hate.

Part of my animosity can be written off as cultural bias: Todd Haley has the misfortune of looking like a huge asshole. Fleece vests, intermittent shitty beard, jocko-dickwad sunglasses, things dangling on a lanyard, golf visors (the worst), even right down to being named Todd—a first name that’s been repurposed as a common noun meaning “alpha douche.” I hate dudes like Todd Haley, and that reflects poorly on me. Such bigotry isn’t fair to the specific dude named Todd Haley, who is statistically speaking probably a loving father/husband/non-felon/proud alumnus of the University of North Florida.

But another part of it, a bigger part of it, is more rational: Todd Haley also has the misfortune of actinglike a huge asshole. While dressed in fleece vest, shitty beard, golf visors (the worst), right on down the line, which amplifies everything. His sideline demeanor as a coach was like a composite sketch of the worst possible Little League dad. If he wasn’t screaming at Matt Cassel, he was berating his coaching staff. If he wasn’t screaming at his players or coaches, he was screaming at the refs. Or scolding opposing coaches. Often times he screamed at multiple groups at once. Nearly every time I saw Todd Haley, he was screaming at someone (usually an employee) from like two feet away, in public, while wearing a NFL-licensed-apparel golf visor (cultural biases are really hard to kill entirely) (to be fair he’s not even wearing a golf visor in almost all of those videos).

So, to conclude, Todd Haley looks like a mean yuppie dad on a sherm high. Also, people who constantly scream negative things run the risk of alienating bystanders. But I actually have a point here, apart from Todd Haley’s incipient meme-dom, smothered in its crib so cruelly. A Chiefs fan with less prejudices than myself might have appreciated Haley for what he’d accomplished with Scott Pioli’s help, at least before 2011’s annus horribilis. Was Todd Haley a good coach? I have no idea. Do you know?

What is the point of firing someone less than a season after they led a team to a division title and a playoff appearance? It only speaks to Todd Haley’s bizarre reverse-charisma that we’re not even talking about Tony Sparano, who was basically a Dennis Farina impersonator who wore sunglasses at all times and got pretty brutally sold out by the Dolphins during Jim Harbaugh NFL’s debutante season, and like Haley, got s-canned last Monday (harder to say that Sparano didn’t get a fair hearing, but his wasn’t the fairest hearing ever).

Kelefa Sanneh’s recent (excellent) profile of Jon Gruden, coach in exile, is worth reading, mostly for Sanneh’s subtly touching portrait of the manic Gruden, who wakes up at 3:17 a.m. to memorize the packages and personnel of Haley’s Chiefs, about to be ritually executed by the Patriots on MNF.  But Sanneh also nails an idea about football and executive leadership:

To see football from a coach’s perspective is to see almost nothing but failure: a grim parade of misaligned bodies, incorrect decisions, missed signals, and bad ideas, occasionally interrupted by a heads-up play or a feat of physical genius. Football is entertainment, but the players dissected on Gruden’s screens seem less like performers in the spotlight than workers under surveillance.

On different surveillance screens, it's easy enough for fans to notice that a team sucks; it's much harder to parse out why Sam Bradford's 2011 is so much worse than his 2010, or to see the defensive adjustments that turned the wildcat offense from football liberation theology back into a risky gimmick (I'm still waiting for the A-11 to reach the NFL). It's a cliche to say "Football is complicated!"; though it sure is.

What's confusing is why some NFL franchises have started making like Robespierre with head coaches. Todd Haley went 19–26 in his 2.8 seasons in KC In comparison: David Shula went 19–53 in 4+ years before Mike Brown decided enough was enough. Football is not nuclear war, contra Don DeLillo, but fielding a winning team is complicated. You’d think that NFL franchise owners, who are all incomprehensibly rich, would understand what can happen when you constantly replace managers.

The NFL has yet to evolve quants, although I’m sure we can look forward to a trend piece on that topic in a few years. Football coaching, for all the Mikes Leach and Martz of the world, is mostly just about winning.  Green Bay’s Mike McCarthy has as much swag as a wet-dry vac, but he knows well enough to grab the back of Aaron Rodger’s belt and hold on. Kim Jong-Bill Belichick has subsumed himself Daniel Day-Lewis-style in the role of “hermit dictator,” but his act is just a fanciful elaboration on the gospel of macho bullshit, a faith in which football coaches are high priests.

American audiences—be they fans, stockholders, or moviegoers—have a soft sport for Mametian executive-kabuki bullshit. In the otherwise muddled Margin Call, Jeremy Irons is beyond great playing a sort of mashup of Dick Fuld and Hank Scorpio, a perfect evocation of the vapid, domineering XY leadership pap that football coaches excel at. Irons looks like a Midtown version of Todd Haley—fleece vest upgraded for $4,000 suit, golf visor swapped for Patrick Bates haircut. Haley had the macho bullshit part down; he just had bad luck with the football part.


Share |

Comments

First You got a great blog .I will be interested in more similar topics. i see you got really very useful topics. home insurance rates by zip code

I discovered your site ideal for me. It consists of wonderful and useful posts. I've read many of them and also got so much from them. In my experience, you do the truly amazing.Trulyi'm impressed out of this publish.
best hair dryer

Suspended License Attorney Austin | emergency ac service It is great to have the opportunity to read a good quality article with useful information on topics that plenty are interested on. braces Houston I concur with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your future updates. Bedford Traffic Ticket Attorney | child daycare center Houston

Occupational Drivers License Attorney Austin | Residential Window Cleaning Sugar Land Tx I researed valuable information on this point as I am working on a class project. tailored mens dress shirts Thank you posting useful information and its now becoming easier to accomplish this task. LOCAL INTERNET MARKETING HOUSTON | Houston Daycare center

ac service and repair spring tx | Residential Window Cleaning Sugar Land Tx Hello! This post couldn’t be written any better! Reading this post reminds me of my previous room mate! Houston local custom dress shirts He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this page to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read. Thank you for sharing! Houston SEo Consultant | Traffic Warrants Houston

emergency ac service Tomball | Best Porcelain Veneers in Houston I want you to thank for your time of this wonderful read!!! I definately enjoy every little bit of it and Tailored hand made shirts Houston I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff of your blog a must read blog!!!! Internet Marketing agency Houston | Traffic Lawyer Houston TX

local ac repair company | Need Dental appointment Houston Nice information, valuable and excellent design, as share good stuff with good ideas and concepts, Traffic Ticket Attorneys Tyler TX lots of great information and inspiration, both of which I need, thanks to offer such a helpful information here. HOUSTON ONLINE MARKETING | Emergency Air conditioning Repair Sugarland TX

I really enjoy simply reading all of your weblogs. Simply wanted to inform you that you have people like me who appreciate your work. Definitely a great post. Hats off to you! The information that you have provided is very helpful.
best band saw

A good blog always comes-up with new and exciting information and while reading I have feel that this blog is really have all those quality that qualify a blog to be a one. jailbreak

First You got a great blog .I will be interested in more similar topics. i see you got really very useful topics. ios jailbreak

Hello! This post couldn’t be written any better! Reading this post reminds me of my previous room mate! He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this page to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read. Thank you for sharing!
What does stand for

surf school lanzarote I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!! Concierge Practice I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post. Concierge Doctor Coral Gables Fl

Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon.
G9 LED

This is cool post and i enjoy to read this post. your blog is fantastic and you have good staff in your blog. nice sharing keep it up.
low car insurance quotes

I love the humor your post has offered. I enjoyed this site a lot. Keep posting article like this. It is fun. Nice photography too!
low rates auto insurance

micro extensions | halogen light bulbs I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post. shatterproof light bulbs | virgin hair companies

Great blog, all posts have something to learn. Your work is very good and i appreciate you and hopping for some more informative posts. Keep writing.
Nostalrious Accounts

penis geliştirici pompa I discovered your site ideal for me. It consists of wonderful and useful posts. I've read many of them and also got so much from them. In my experience, you do the truly amazing.Trulyi'm impressed out of this publish. parking lot cleaning services

speaker cable I want you to thank for your time of this wonderful read!!! I definately enjoy every little bit of it and pièces auto pas cher I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff of your blog a must read blog!!!! Cavo di potenza

Câble haut-parleur Nice information, valuable and excellent design, as share good stuff with good ideas and concepts, cable para altavoz lots of great information and inspiration, both of which I need, thanks to offer such a helpful information here. Lautsprecherkabel

reinsurance contract A very awesome blog post. We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please keep it up. Great work. low cost car insurance

general reinsurance corporation I really enjoy simply reading all of your weblogs. Simply wanted to inform you that you have people like me who appreciate your work. Definitely a great post. Hats off to you! The information that you have provided is very helpful. cheapest car insurance

After reading your article I was amazed. I know that you explain it very well. And I hope that other readers will also experience how I feel after reading your article. I feel very grateful that I read this. It is very helpful and very informative and I really learned a lot from it.
cheap shotguns for sale

I researed valuable information on this point as I am working on a class project. Thank you posting useful information and its now becoming easier to accomplish this task.
promo deal bandung

Its my great pleasure to visit your blog and to enjoy your great posts here. I like it a lot. I can feel that you paid much attention for those articles, as all of them make sense and are very useful.
discount jakarta

A good blog always comes-up with new and exciting information and while reading I have feel that this blog is really have all those quality that qualify a blog to be a one. medical trolley

First You got a great blog .I will be interested in more similar topics. i see you got really very useful topics. medical furniture manufacturer

Your blog provided us with valuable to work with. Each & every tips of your post are awesome. Thanks a lot for sharing. Keep blogging..
Explainer Videos

http://lowcostautoquotes.com A very awesome blog post. We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please keep it up. Great work. compare homeowners insurance

http://lowcostautoquotes.com Nice information, valuable and excellent design, as share good stuff with good ideas and concepts, lots of great information and inspiration, both of which I need, thanks to offer such a helpful information here. homeowners insurance quotes

Deal of the week I really enjoy simply reading all of your weblogs. Simply wanted to inform you that you have people like me who appreciate your work. Definitely a great post. Hats off to you! The information that you have provided is very helpful. Laptop Buying Guide

A good blog always comes-up with new and exciting information and while reading I have feel that this blog is really have all those quality that qualify a blog to be a one. homeowners insurance rates by zip code

First You got a great blog .I will be interested in more similar topics. i see you got really very useful topics. compare car insurance rates

microsoft dynamics crm | dhow cruise dubai Great post i must say and thanks for the information. Education is definitely a sticky subject. However, is still among the leading topics of our time. I appreciate your post and look forward to more. erp software | dhow cruise dubai

I just got to this amazing site not long ago. I was actually captured with the piece of resources you have got here. Big thumbs up for making such wonderful blog page!
Iwasiuk

It is great to have the opportunity to read a good quality article with useful information on topics that plenty are interested on.I concur with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your future updates.
功夫

Hello! This post couldn’t be written any better! Reading this post reminds me of my previous room mate! He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this page to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read. Thank you for sharing!
unique tattoo

Excellent read, Positive site, where did u come up with the information on this posting?I have read a few of the articles on your website now, and I really like your style. Thanks a million and please keep up the effective work.
floor repairs manchester

good deals A very awesome blog post. We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please keep it up. Great work. cotton bowl

I really enjoy simply reading all of your weblogs. Simply wanted to inform you that you have people like me who appreciate your work. Definitely a great post. Hats off to you! The information that you have provided is very helpful. orange bowl

USA Immigration | Concierge Doctor Excellent read, Positive site, where did u come up with the information on this posting?I have read a few of the articles on your website now, and I really like your style. Thanks a million and please keep up the effective work. medical furniture manufacturer | Malta Passport

Admire it regarding positioning the comely amuse…I was summary set regarding a manifold regular this…I identified that can peaceful good, employing likelihood, you would perhaps store positioning a immense sum of blogs.
wap m88

Awesome blog. I enjoyed reading your articles. This is truly a great read for me. I have bookmarked it and I am looking forward to reading new articles. Keep up the good work!
wap m88

I want you to thank for your time of this wonderful read!!! I definately enjoy every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff of your blog a must read blog!!!!
boucle d oreille diamant homme

Great tips and very easy to understand. This will definitely be very useful for me when I get a chance to start my blog.
nyc proposals

I really enjoy simply reading all of your weblogs. Simply wanted to inform you that you have people like me who appreciate your work. Definitely a great post. Hats off to you! The information that you have provided is very helpful.
2016 Honda Skydeck Release Date

Actually I am not habituate to reply a comment on blogs but this blog caught my attention and I am compelled to write a comment here to express my gratitude to you. I would like to appreciate for this awesome work.
Call Center VoIP

kemptville movers | textile minceur homme I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post. debardeur amincissant | movers in ottawa

Awesome blog. I enjoyed reading your articles. This is truly a great read for me. I have bookmarked it and I am looking forward to reading new articles. Keep up the good work!
kik messenger app

We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. Great work.
kik login