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Count Alex's Losses
11-07-2005, 01:42 AM
http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2005/11/07/RAIDERS.TMP

Kansas City, Mo. -- One call. One play. One yard. One second.

If the Chiefs truly have the Raiders' number -- as it would appear, given that Kansas City has won six consecutive contests between the bitter AFC West rivals -- that single numeral will suffice in explaining how their latest 60-minute fistfight was settled.

The stats will show that a 1-yard Larry Johnson touchdown leap as time expired led to an exhausting 27-23 Chiefs victory Sunday before the usual deafening sellout crowd at sun-splashed Arrowhead Stadium.

"There's something about the Chiefs and Raiders' football game that comes down to the final minute or final seconds," said an emotional Kansas City coach Dick Vermeil, who bet the house on a win-it-all decision with five seconds remaining to have Johnson pound the ball in from 1-foot out as his team trailed 23-20, rather than line up for a game-tying field goal attempt that would have reset the odds at 50-50 in overtime.

"It's always a game of highs and lows with them," Raiders guard Ron Stone lamented. "I'm just trying to get over the low right now."

Six times since 2003, the Chiefs (5-3) have prevailed in these nail-biting meetings, winning those games by a combined 28 points. Five of those games came down to the final play. Six of the last seven games at Arrowhead have been decided either by a field goal or in overtime.

But the Raiders, now 3-5 and fighting for their lives in a competitive conference that probably won't offer them any room this postseason, will forever argue that a single call by the officials in the final 30 seconds on Sunday cost them the win.

Still basking in the relief of a go-ahead touchdown -- after seven wayward pass attempts, quarterback Kerry Collins finally connected with wide receiver Randy Moss for a 7-yard touchdown pass with 1 minute, 45 seconds remaining -- the Raiders honestly thought they had finally broken the drought.

"I'm mad at myself for getting excited," center Adam Treu said. "I've been here long enough to know that you can't too excited. But I had a great feeling about it."

On 2nd-and 3-at the Chiefs' 47-yard line with 34 seconds remaining, Raiders defensive tackle Ed Jasper was blocked off his feet by Kansas City guard Will Shields as he rushed Chiefs quarterback Trent Green.

As Jasper fell, he wrapped his arm around the quarterback, who was still in the collapsing pocket.

But Jasper's leg also caught Green from behind, and the grieving quarterback -- who buried his father, Jim, last Wednesday, following his death by what appeared to be a heart attack -- was pulled to the ground.

While the Raiders briefly celebrated what they thought was a drive-killing sack, the officials quickly huddled.

The call: Jasper was flagged for tripping the quarterback, a 10-yard penalty and an automatic first down.

Afterward, the Raiders were livid. "What a bulls -- call!" a Raiders executive bellowed outside the locker room

"I didn't even see the quarterback, man. I was too busy being yanked to the ground," Jasper said angrily. "I bullrushed the guy, (Shields) tackled me, the ref threw the flag late, so I'm figuring it was a holding call. But it was tripping on me.

"People don't realize that little things like that, whether (the official) was right or wrong, the kind of outcome it has on a game. Of all the different ways that call could have gone, it went like that.

"Ya'll tell me why."

A judgment call, someone suggested.

"A judgment call, huh?" Jasper responded sarcastically. "That's exactly why, every other week at the Raiders, we get a letter in mail from the league saying, sorry, it was a bad call."

Kansas City used a timeout with 19 seconds left, then Green threw a short pass to Johnson -- the lone running back with injured Priest Holmes (head trauma) inactive -- that turned into a gamebreaker.

The Raiders sent a five-man rush and played nickel in the secondary. But Johnson broke through the containment and found himself alone, sprinting down the left sideline. Strong safety Stuart Schweigert finally ran him down from across the field, a tackle that jarred the ball loose once Johnson was ruled down just a yard from the goal line.

That difference, six inches or so, empowered Vermeil to make the decision to go for the touchdown rather than the tie.

"We gave the game ball to the Trent Green family in honor of his dad. And believe me, (Jim Green) was there when I made that last call," said Vermeil, who broke into tears as he spoke. "Wow, was I scared."

In hindsight, the Raiders -- who amassed only 263 yards of total offense, their lowest output of the season since their 310-yard losing effort Oct. 16 against the Chargers -- may regret they settled for three field goals in the first half, rather than push for the touchdown. Certainly there were opportunities for more.

A Tommy Kelly forced fumble, recovered by defensive end Derrick Burgess, set up a 32-yard Sebastian Janikowski field goal. A 62-yard Chris Carr punt return set up the third field goal, a 48-yarder with five seconds left before the break.

"It was tough. We obviously weren't in a good rhythm," said quarterback Kerry Collins, who was blitzed all day and completed 21-of-40 passes for 175 yards, a touchdown and an interception. "We didn't make plays in the red zone that would have led to touchdowns."

The Raiders' defense, which had played well enough in the first half to hold Kansas City to a pair of field goals, finally bent in the third quarter when Green connected with tight end Tony Gonzalez on a 33-yard pass, setting up a 6-yard touchdown throw to fullback Tony Richardson with 55 seconds left in the third quarter.

Collins' third interception of the season, an overthrown ball toward Moss, was picked off late in the third quarter by Chiefs free safety Greg Wesley at the Raiders' 35-yard line, setting up a 15-yard Johnson touchdown run and a 20-9 Chiefs' lead.

Wide receiver Jerry Porter helped cut the deficit, snaring a 4-yard scoring pass from Collins with 10:31 remaining that saw him wide open in the end zone as the third read.

The Moss touchdown left Porter, who caught seven passes for 68 yards, believing the Raiders had won this thing even as Kansas City began its final assault.

"Yeah, I did," Porter admitted. "But I guess we relaxed and starting playing that prevent defense. And came up short."

As long as the clock is running, these games are never over.

"It's Raiders-Chiefs, man," Treu said. "Guys who have been here awhile can understand that."
Seeing red

The Chiefs have defeated the Raiders six straight times, by a total margin of 28 points, and often with last-minute scores.

Raiderhader
11-07-2005, 01:51 AM
I have always found it amusing that someone with the last name Gay is writing for a San Fran paper. It has to be a pen or professional name, it's just too good to be true.

Count Alex's Losses
11-07-2005, 01:57 AM
I have always found it amusing that someone with the last name Gay is writing for a San Fran paper. It has to be a pen or professional name, it's just too good to be true.

I just had to throw that in there. :D

Spicy McHaggis
11-07-2005, 02:02 AM
Wow, Jasper is a little whiny bitch. And of course no mention of the phantom roughing call.

farmerchief
11-07-2005, 07:12 AM
"A judgment call, huh?" Jasper responded sarcastically. "That's exactly why, every other week at the Raiders, we get a letter in mail from the league saying, sorry, it was a bad call."

Quick, somebody send the Raiders a letter this week, saying the Chiefs a sorry we made the call going for the touchdown, and not tying the game with a field goal! ROFL

ROYC75
11-07-2005, 10:10 AM
"A judgment call, huh?" Jasper responded sarcastically. "That's exactly why, every other week at the Raiders, we get a letter in mail from the league saying, sorry, it was a bad call."

Quick, somebody send the Raiders a letter this week, saying the Chiefs a sorry we made the call going for the touchdown, and not tying the game with a field goal! ROFL


LOL, Got an addy for them ? ROFL

morphius
11-07-2005, 10:18 AM
Yet not one mention of the BS call on Jared leading to their first TD.

Lzen
11-07-2005, 10:23 AM
As Jasper fell, he wrapped his arm around the quarterback, who was still in the collapsing pocket.]

Hmmmm, I'll have to look at that play again. I watched it over about 3 or 4 times last night and I don't remember him getting his arm around Green. The only thing I remember is the QB getting sacked by a leg. I think pretty much anytime a QB gets sacked by a leg, that's gonna be a penalty. He is right about Shields pulling him to the ground, though. ROFL Hey, the calls evened out. They got a TD off some BS calls by the refs.

DJJasonp
11-07-2005, 10:25 AM
Yeah, the BS call on Jared, plus....we had two insanely BS holding calls called against us on one of our drives in the 3rd quarter.....

It was so bad, even Randy Cross was mentioning that they were ridiculous!