View Full Version : Chiefs give themselves a chance.

10-24-2006, 06:30 PM
RAND: Chiefs give themselves a chance
Oct 24, 2006, 3:50:46 AM by Jonathan Rand - FAQ

One football game can sure bring out the overreaction in people. That’s partly because of the emotional nature of the beast. And partly because one game can change a team’s outlook so dramatically that an overreaction may really not be an overreaction at all.

The Chiefs’ 30-27 victory over the Chargers on Sunday was an outlook changer.

Instead of standing 2-4 and already out of the wild-card chase, the Chiefs stand 3-3 and just one game behind the second-place teams with the best records. And while the Chiefs are two games behind the Broncos in the AFC West, it’s better to have dust kicked in your face than lag so far back you can’t even see the pacesetter.

Given the Chiefs’ ups and downs, it’s anybody’s guess where Sunday’s win might take them. Let’s just say they’ve taken advantage of one big opportunity and created an even bigger one. They now have one heck of a good chance to pull themselves to 4-3, which seemed unthinkable after their 45-7 loss at Pittsburgh.

The Steelers did the unthinkable, too. Instead of sustaining their momentum and getting back on a Super Bowl track, they went to Atlanta and lost three fumbles, their quarterback and the game. There’s a hard lesson there for the Chiefs – one big win doesn’t mean all is well.

Yet it was clear Sunday that the real Chiefs’ defense comes a lot closer to the one that set the tone with three early turnovers than the one that was overwhelmed at Pittsburgh. The Chiefs at home resembled the team that walloped the 49ers more than the one that didn’t seem to realize the season was starting against the Bengals.

If the Chiefs could beat the Chargers, one of the NFL’s stronger teams, at Arrowhead, they’re capable of beating any of their five remaining home opponents there, too.

The Chiefs’ next game, against the Seahawks, is a good example of why, despite a schedule’s apparent ease or difficulty, it’s often not as important who you play as when you play them.

The Seahawks are reeling right now. The defending NFC champions dropped to 4-2 after a shocking 31-13 loss at home to the Vikings. Running back Shaun Alexander, who last season scored a record of 28 touchdowns and was league MVP, sat out because of a cracked foot and won’t play against the Chiefs.

Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck suffered a serious knee injury and likely will be replaced by Seneca Wallace. On Sunday, Wallace threw two interceptions, was sacked twice, and gave the Vikings seven points on a fumble.

The Seahawks, like the Chiefs, will need to overcome their injury problems to make something of their season. The Chiefs seem to have adjusted well to their injuries, especially at quarterback and on the offensive line.

Backup quarterback Damon Huard stands 3-2 as a starter and has made big plays in each of his wins. Wallace, on the other hand, has never started in the NFL and Arrowhead is not the best place for any quarterback to get his first test under pressure.

The Chiefs, thanks to an 0-2 start, get constantly tested under pressure. They left themselves in need of a hot streak just to get their heads above water. Now they’ve won three of their last four games and have created the opportunity to climb over .500 for the first time this season.

The Chiefs may not find a better chance to get rolling in the right direction.

The opinions offered in this column do not necessarily reflect those of the Kansas City Chiefs.

10-24-2006, 06:38 PM
Woody Page says the Chiefs are a bad team
let us not kid ourselves