A giant sign outside the Chiefs locker room Wednesday told the story of the season: Eliminate bad football.
The Chiefs are trying to salvage the season after two crushing losses in their first two games of the season. Kansas City travels to New Orleans to take on the Saints at noon Sunday on KCTV5.
Because of a number of injuries, coach Romeo Crennel delayed players practicing in pads until Thursday.
Crennel said both the Chiefs and Saints are struggling.
"So we'll see if we can improve some of the things we need to improve to try to win a game," Crennel said. "So that's where we are."
General Manager Scott Pioli spent more time at practice Wednesday than he normally does.
"What I've found over the years is we try to work on the things that are causing you problems and improve those things, then you have a chance to get better," Crennel said. "That's what we're trying to focus on doing."
The leaders on the team also have to step up.
"Particularly I think your leaders help pull the team together and help keep the team together," Crennel said. "So having good leaders on the team is a positive thing."
The Saints have also struggled in the wake of suspensions from the bounty scandal. Crennel said he thinks the suspensions have caused a major impact so that "they haven't been stopping people like they used to."
Quarterback Matt Cassel said players are trying to stay calm despite the disappointing start.
"There's a lot of stuff going on right now, and I know that we're 0-2, but the fact of the matter is we just have to play better collectively," Cassel said. "It comes down to playing better and executing better on the field, it comes down to not turning the ball over, not having penalties, negative runs and so forth and so on."
Both Crennel and Cassel praised the leaders on the team.
"We just have to play better, and as a captain, we push these guys each and every day, and I think we've got great leadership on this team," Cassel said.
When asked what some of things they do as leaders are, Cassel replied, "We go out to dinner, Bible study, all that stuff. Again, I think we've got great camaraderie on this team, we've got great leadership, but at the end of the day, it comes down to playing better football."
Cassel said avoiding third and long situations is vital.
"Third and long in this league is hard to convert because you've got good guys up front that are ready to go, pin their ears back, so we've got to try to do that better and also take care of the ball," Cassel said. "We've got to do a better job offensively of taking care of the ball."
Loud music was played during Wednesday's practice to help prepare the Chiefs for the loud, crazy environment at the Superdome.
Cornerback Brandon Flowers said he is ready to turn a corner.
"We've got to get those losses behind us, you can't keep dreading them and harping on them saying this and that," he said. "We've just go to move forward. We watched film, corrected the things we needed to correct and get that 0-2 out of our heads."
Linebacker Derrick Johnson said facing Saints quarterback Drew Brees will be tough and the Chiefs must adjust during the game.
"Drew Brees is a guy that's proven in the league and he's been doing it for a while and he plays at a high level when he gets on the field, and he's very smart," Johnson said. "The running backs are great. The blocking is good. The receivers are pretty good. So they've got all the personnel going so they can run the ball or pass the ball."
Copyright2012 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
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