Archive for the ‘ Kansas City Chiefs ’ Category

NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs Should Sign Both Alex & Geno Smith

By Manzer Munir for Pakistanis for Peace
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The Kansas City Chiefs should trade for Alex Smith, draft Geno as their #1 and still have possible 3rd stringer Matt Cassel for a QB heavy team with great starter between Smith and Smith. The Chiefs should not only take Alex Smith in a trade for a 3rd and possibly a 4th or later round pick from the San Francisco 49ers, but also will allow the Chiefs to still pick up Geno Smith or Matt Barkley as their #1 pick depending on who would be a good pick between the two.
Personally I would pick Geno over Matt Barkley and Alex Smith even though I believe Matt Barkley will also have a great chance to be a good NFL quarterback. Alex needs to reclaim being a good one but hasn’t had the consistency and more importantly since he is now coming back from a big injury an organization coached by Andy Reid should not put all their eggs in one basket. After all that is what happened with Trent Green under Dick Vermeil. Some guys are never the same after some hits, just ask Trent Green, the impressive stats guy during the regular season and either missing the playoffs entirely and not having 1 playoff win.
I believe I have confessed a long time ago that I am a longtime tormented Chiefs fan of this team. Initially as a Buffalo Bills fan in the early ’90’s didn’t work out as a fan and neither have so far my latest project, the Pakistani owned Jacksonville Jaguars, who by the way I will root for since they are owned by that ever successful Pakistani American job creator named Shahid Khan. However it is my beloved Kansas City Chefs whom I care for the most in the NFL, year after year. How fond of them am I, you ask. Well I love them so much that they will have to earn their “i “ with me. Till then, they will remain the Chefs to me. Till they win 1 playoff game, they are my Chefs.
Of course we really will not know at all exactly what the Chefs will end up doing right until and on draft day on 4/25/2013. However as a long suffering fans here in KC Chief land, we can only hope that Andy Reid and John Dorsey can in fact have a great situation with three great quarterbacks, a traded for Alex Smith fighting for a #1 starting job with either a Geno Smith or Matt Barkley as the back up and the 3rd stringer veteran Matt Cassel . This would be the smartest move the Kansas City Chiefs organization can make in my opinion, but will they? No, cause they will prove to somehow be still the Chefs. I actually think this draft is the make or break decision of Andy’s experiment in Kansas City. Only time will tell.

 

Manzer Munir is a long suffering sports fan who is a diehard Kansas Jayhawk, a proud American of Pakistani descent and founder of Pakistanis for Peace and blogs at www.PakistanisforPeace.com and at other websites as a freelance journalist and opinionist.

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Jacksonville Jaguars- Allah’s NFL Team?

By Manzer Munir for Pakistanis for Peace

The last few days have not been easy ones for me. I have had to watch as my adopted homeland, the United States, is accused by Pakistan, the nation of my forefathers, for being responsible for the deaths of 24 Pakistani soldiers by “friendly” fire.

So it wasn’t hard to imagine that once again I would be hurting for being both American and Muslim as I was on 9/11, and now I am once again feeling the pinch of being both Pakistani and American as well. Believe it or not, you can love two countries; just ask Italian or Irish Americans. I am sure you know that this is not the first time and certainly will not be the last time that as a Pakistani American I will be reeling from news concerning Pakistan. Yet the covert attack and neutralization of Osama Bin Laden in May of this year in Pakistan, a country long suspected to be his hiding place, have all but shattered any remaining doubts to the American public regarding which side of the fence Pakistan finds itself. As President Bush so famously said “You’re either with us, or against us” to President Pervez Musharraf immediately following the attacks of September 11, 2011.

At least since Bin Laden’s killing on May 2, 2011, as far as the average American, John Q Public is concerned, it appears that Pakistan was against us all along, and merely only was paying lip service the last 10 years. However staffers at the US State Department, all the way up to Secretary Hillary Clinton and President Obama will rightly admit, that this simply is not the case. Pakistan has been a difficult ally to be sure, but the country has been an ally nonetheless and has proven time and time again to be invaluable not just in this current fight for the strategic direction of Afghanistan, but also was critical in the last great fight involving this land against the former USSR in the ‘80’s.

One can go even further back and talk about the historically strong US and Pakistan relations that go all the way back to at least President Eisenhower and the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO), a security pact similar to NATO, but for Asia and parts of the Pacific, it was an organization of which Pakistan and the US comprised membership, along with six other nations namely Australia, France, Great Britain, New Zealand, the Philippines, and Thailand. This was an eclectic bunch of nations to be sure, but a defense pact tying Pakistan and the US, this once brought the two together in a treaty of mutual defense and cooperation going back as early as 1954.

One would also be remiss if we forget that the famous US Air force pilot Gary Powers flew on a U-2 secret mission from Pakistan’s Peshawar airbase at the request of Eisenhower and at Pakistan’s acquiescence. He had been doing a reconnaissance mission against the Soviets at the height of the Cold War when his plane was shot down causing the then famous 1960 U-2 incident. Amazingly, it was less than just a couple generations ago when President Dwight D. Eisenhower famously called Pakistan America’s “most allied ally in Asia. Wow, as the old Virginia Slim’s cigarette ad tagline used to go “ You’ve come a long way baby!” Haven’t you, Pakistan?

I suppose before we get lost on another few paragraphs on US-Pakistan alliances of old and their longstanding history of cooperation and friendship, whether from the days of the Cold War or the far more recent war on terror, let me get back to the original purpose of this article. So, there I was, in my now seemingly regular funk, on account of all the rapidly downward spiraling US-Pak relations, and then, there it was, a glimmer of hope for a bit of positive news. Maybe a chance for something unrelated to terror, bombs, Taliban, Shiite-Sunni violence, blasphemy laws, honor killings or anyone of the myriad of utterly negative topics that so easily and regularly grace the top of the headline news on any cable news channel on any given day regarding Pakistan.

So here finally was some positive news regarding this nation. Initially I wondered if perhaps this feel good story would be along the lines of the usual sports filled beacons of hope for the otherwise unfortunate Pakistani masses such as in the form of when an Amir Khan gains world boxing glory or when an Imran Khan led cricket team of old wins a Cricket World Cup or maybe it was similar to the legend of the Khan boys, Jahanghir and Jansher Khan who were busy conquering the world of squash (racquetball) for decades. Perhaps this news I so eagerly awaited to get me out of this rut was related to a scientific or professional endeavor that highlighted Pakistani achievements and success stories such as that of Pakistani born neurologist Dr Malik M Hasan, the man who single-handedly helped change the medical industry in the US for the better, when over the course of a few years through a process of mergers and acquisitions, he helped eventually form HSI, a multi-billion dollar healthcare provider that in 1993, which was an organization with about 1.4 million members, 40,000 doctors, and nearly 400 member hospitals! His innovative and entrepreneurial management style led to the very first modern Health Management Organization (HMO) in the United States, and thereby brought more affordable healthcare to the vast majority of Americans in the 1980’s. Dr Hasan eventually grew the business to be worth more than $10 billion dollars and countless thousands jobs for professionals through many midwestern and western states.

Maybe a boldly similar idea or solution in today’s rapidly increasing costs of healthcare and lack of insurance for over 40 million Americans can come, if not from a Pakistani American like Dr Hasan, then perhaps from another of the world’s brightest who still yearn to come to these shores with their dreams and aspirations for success and achieving a piece of the American Dream that millions of their countryman from Europe had done years before them. Along the way, people like Dr Hasan employed hundreds and thousands of Americans and become a mega job creator, kind of like the ones that Republicans say they love.

It could be that the Pakistani American feel good story bringing much needed good news to the Pakistani global diaspora, and indeed by that realization, at the very least, to a Pakistani American like myself was going to be similar to a fellow Lahore born compatriot like Tariq Farid, the founder of the wildly popular Edible Arrangements, a US based international franchise that specializes in fresh fruit arrangements for special occasions and gifts. With nearly a 1000 locations in the US and a few countries abroad, I am sure many a Congressman from both Red and Blue states would love to attract job creators like him to their state and lure his growing and profitable company, during these economically depressed times, to their state from their Headquarters in Connecticut.

I suppose I could go on and on at the long list of distinguished Pakistani Americans from the renowned NASA physicist, Dr Bashir A Syed, to Gibran Latif Hamdan, the first person of Pakistani descent to play in the NFL. Other major contributions not in the field of science, sports or business, yet still as inspirational to Pakistani Americans could have been the story of the American hero of Pakistani descent, Sgt. Wasim Khan, the first Purple Heart winner from that nation who won the award for valor during Operation Iraqi Freedom, costing him numerous injuries while fighting for our freedoms.

Certainly no one to date has better demonstrated a greater sacrifice to this nation than the story of Cpl. Kareem R Khan, another Pakistani American, one who gave the ultimate sacrifice for his beloved country, the United States, when he gave his life for American freedom, liberty and ideals dying on Iraqi soil during combat there. He also earned the Purple Heart and has the honor of being buried at the resting place of fallen American heroes, the venerated Arlington National Cemetery. One can do their own Google search for a list of Pakistani Americans to find out that this list comprises far more accomplished and good citizens of Pakistani descent than the occasional delusional individual like Faisal Shahzad, of the Times Square bomb fame.

So you bet it was good news for me to hear a few days ago that a successful and hard working American businessman and multi-millionaire from the midwest, Shahid Khan, a Pakistani American owner of a large automobile parts manufacturer, Flex-N-Gate, had just bought an NFL team, the Jacksonville Jaguars! My rare good optimism however seems to perhaps been ill placed though because it seems that even a positive and notable news story like this can quickly turn into something far more twisted and sinister as witnessed by the scores of Islamophobic and racial comments being left on the Jacksonville Jaguars Facebook page and other sports blogs and boards, hours since the sale and the origins and national background of the new owner became public. The deal which still has to go to an NFL owner’s vote would only then be complete and final. Whether the NFL owner’s vote affirmatively on the deal or not, the rancid and clearly Un-American comments on the team’s fan page demonstrate that a majority of the local fans of this NFL team seem only to care about his Pakistani background and not of the fact that he is committed to staying and keeping the team in the small Jacksonville market and that he is a genuine fan of football and by all accounts would make a great manager/owner of the franchise.

The sad fact remains that there is a possibility that despite all the countless contributions to this great nation made by Pakistani Americans, many of these die hard football fans have no problem with risking losing their team to a different owner who would take the team out possibly west to the vacant Los Angeles market than to have a “Paki” keep the team in Florida’s small Jacksonville market and try and build a contender there.

Maybe its his IRS troubles that Shahid had a few years ago that prevented him from buying the St Louis Ram’s majority ownership stake last year or maybe it really is his very interesting moustache that scares people away. Regardless, I will gladly take either reason for his bid not being approved than anything that points to his national origin or racial makeup. Afterall, us Americans should never forget the words of the late great Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr when he said that we should ”not judge a man by the color of his skin, but rather by the content of his character.” All I know is that this Pakistani American still keeps alive Dr King’s dream. So no amount of paranoia should let the die-hard Jaguar fans fear that Muslims and Allah are on their way to taking over their beloved NFL franchise. Now gentlemen, let’s play ball!

Manzer Munir, a proud American of Pakistani descent, is a former US State Department Foreign Service Officer Management Selectee, and the founder of Pakistanis for Peace. He is also an often tormented fan of the Kansas City Chiefs of the NFL as well as having the good fortune of being a lifelong fan of Kansas Jayhawk Basketball.

Musings of a Long Suffering Fan

By Manzer Munir for Pakistanis for Peace

I am looking for a professional football team to follow. The Kansas City Chiefs aren’t it. Why, you ask? Why should I not continue to be a fan of the Chiefs? To be honest, I haven’t really been a Chiefs fan since 2006 when they lost to the Indianapolis Colts 23-8 in a game in which they did not gain ONE first down till late in the 3rd quarter! That was the most frustrating game as a fan and since that day when the Chiefs showed their ineptitude, I have stopped giving them my heart and soul on the gridiron. Frankly speaking, I cannot afford to continue to be so embarrassed as I have been by the Chiefs for as long as I can remember. To no surprise and continuing to not disappoint in embarrassing their long suffering fans, they lost today to the Detroit Lions 48-3.

I have had many frustrating games as a fan in many sports. Long before I was a Chiefs fan due to living in the Kansas City area, I used to be a Buffalo Bills fan mainly because I liked the defense of Bruce Smith, Daryll Talley and Cornelius Bennett as well as the offense of QB Jim Kelly, Thurman Thomas, Andre Reed. That was a high flying team of the early ’90’s who famously won 4 straight AFC Championships and subsequently lost 4 straight Super Bowls, first one by only one point to a fellow New York Team, the NY Giants, on a late field goal miss by Scott Norwood that started the string of four consecutive Super Bowl losses. The Bills became the only team ever to play in four straight Super Bowls, and also lose four straight championships.

As if the consecutive Super Bowl losses 4 straight years from 1990 thru 1994 weren’t enough, I managed to double my futility as a sports fan when that final year in 1994, my favorite NBA basketball team, the New York Knicks, also lost in a seven game NBA Finals to the Houston Rockets led by none other than future hall of famer and devout Muslim, Hakeem Olajuwon. The Kicks who were always my favorite NBA team, mainly because they were a NY team and I have always thought of myself as a New Yorker, even though I had never lived there, but primarily as it was and always will be the one city that I associate with America. Afterall, New York and Ellis Island have been the main point of entry for generations of Americans and this was the city where I landed as a 14 year old student at JFK airport in NY, headed to boarding school in Vermont in the fall of 1989.

The Knicks with Patrick Ewing had been haunted by Michael Jordan and the Bulls for three consecutive years, when the greatest of all time single handedly defeated my Knicks on his way to his first three-peat. But that year when Ewing and John Starks finally managed to get past the Chicago Bulls, sans Michael as he had retired, Hakeem managed to swat their and my sports dreams on his way to championships in 1994 and 1995.

I became convinced in the early ’90’s that I was jinxed when it came to my sports teams when in 1991, my favorite team of ANY sport on ANY level, the Kansas Jayhawks lost in the NCAA Finals to the hated Duke Blue Devils. The year after that defeat they got “stepped all over by UTEP” in the second round and continued their futility over one lower ranked foe to another all the way till the 2008 season when they finally won their first championship since 1988, a year before I even arrived in the US. If it was not for the Jayhawks championship of 2008, I would be without any sports championship to my name as a fan since following sports closely at the beginning of the ’90’s, some 20+ years ago.

The Jayhawks are a team I am forever bound to with loyalty. Not only is that due to having gone to school at Mount Oread as a student in the early ’90’s but also because despite many disappointing seasons in the last 20 years, they are not a complete disappointment due to having one of the highest winning percentages of any Division I basketball program and occasionally winning a championship every couple decades, something I cannot say of rivals K-state and Mizzou. Still, for as dominant a program as KU is year in and year out, they should have a few more championships. Regardless, I will be a diehard Jayhawk fan as this school may lose and at times disappoint me, it will never embarrass me. I wish I could say that of Chiefs .

No the Chiefs of the last 20 years have been a huge disappointment. They have been embarrassing in fact. There was a time when teams used to fear coming into Arrowhead stadium to play the Chiefs. The spanking of the Chiefs 41-7 by none other than the Buffalo Bills last weeks proves, that Arrowhead stadium has lost a lot of its mystique.

This week as the Chiefs lost to the formerly hapless Detroit Lions 48-3 in Detroit, the Buffalo Bills came from behind and won an exciting game against the Oakland Raiders to go 2-0. As I look around the NFL landscape, I am trying desperately to latch onto a team to follow and support in this nascent NFL season, I keep coming back to my past #1 NFL team, the Buffalo Bills , as a team I am getting excited about.  At least they offer me hope to still call myself an NFL fan. This is a team that is clearly improving and on an upward trajectory, someting I can not say about the Kansas City Chefs.

I know there are those who are much more unfortunate than me when it comes to sports futility as a fan. I am sure someone in Cleveland or Chicago may lament to me about the drought they have had and the suffering they have endured as a Chicago Cubs fan or a Cleveland Browns fan, going decades since winning any championships. Heck even fellow AFC west rivals, the San Diego chargers have gone 47 years and counting since winning a championship, currently the longest drought in the NFL. Yeah, but they are in San Diego! Have you seen the scenery and the weather? Not to mention the beaches! No, I do not feel very badly for them.

As for me, I may be jumping back on the Buffalo Bills bandwagon so I can salvage some interest in the NFL season as I have a feeling that the Chiefs will not be fulfilling that void anytime soon. At least they are a team that I can get behind and get excited about. That is, at least until March Madness and Rock Chalk Jayhawk time. It is funny how life always has a way of coming full circle.

Manzer Munir is a long suffering sports fan who is a diehard Kansas Jayhawk, a proud American of Pakistani descent and founder of Pakistanis for Peace and blogs at www.PakistanisforPeace.com and at other websites as a freelance journalist and opinionist.

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