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Old 12-26-2004, 11:46 AM  
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Whitlock:Nice game can't erase naughty year

Nice game can't erase naughty year

Let's keep the Christmas gift given to us by the Chiefs and the Oakland Raiders in perspective.

It was a fantastic gift, the perfect way to end Christmas Day. The Chiefs and the Raiders split 61 points, and the hometown team grabbed one more point than the Raiders when kicker Lawrence Tynes split the uprights with a 38-yard field goal with 22 seconds to play.

Kansas City 31, Oakland 30.

Saturday's game didn't lack for action, suspense or story lines.

Both teams scored 21 points in the first half. Trent Green threw for 358 yards and two scores. Tony Gonzalez caught 11 passes for 124 yards. Receiver Eddie Kennison went over the 1,000-yard mark for the first time as a Chief, catching six passes for 79 yards.

For the third straight game, Larry Johnson scored two touchdowns. Rookie defensive end Jared Allen picked up his ninth sack of the season. Return man Dante Hall set up the game-winning points, returning a kickoff 49 yards. Kansas City's defense held the Raiders without a touchdown in the second half.

Tynes nailed his first game-winning kick. Rookie receiver Samie Parker recorded his second straight solid performance, snagging three passes for 35 yards. His two sideline, tiptoe grabs were critical.

The Chiefs, 7-8, have now won four games in a row and kept their razor-thin playoff hopes alive. (If every team in the NFL loses the rest of their games, then I believe the Chiefs sneak into the playoffs if they win a coin flip.)

But let's make sure we keep all of this in proper perspective. Kansas City's Priest Holmes-less winning streak doesn't mean that coach Dick Vermeil has fixed the Chiefs and there are now fewer problems heading into this off-season than we anticipated.

Nope. Saturday's victory was fun. It was one of the best gifts left under the tree. If Chiefs fans were going to be forced to sit out in the cold on Christmas Day, thank God the Chiefs had the courtesy to play an exciting game.

But Saturday's gift doesn't get the Chiefs out of the doghouse. They've been too bad this season. It's no different than the spouse who was caught cheating in September and thought diamond earrings for Christmas would take the pain and embarrassment away.

It's not that easy, is it?

Saturday's game reminds me of the old Chris Rock comedy routine about men wanting credit for things they're supposed to do. The Raiders are a horrific team, playing with their backup quarterback and a defensive scheme that doesn't fit their personnel.

The Chiefs are supposed to beat the Oakland Raiders at Arrowhead Stadium on Christmas day. You don't win on the road at Christmas, unless you're Shaquille O'Neal and you're playing the Lakers.

What should we make of Kansas City's four-game winning steak?

Not much. The Chiefs have beaten the Raiders, the Titans, the Broncos and the Raiders. The Chiefs have beaten three teams that have folded the tent and mailed it in the last half of the season. If the Chiefs legitimize their strong finish by beating the playoff-bound San Diego Chargers in the last week of the regular season, Chiefs fans should not tolerate any discussion about how close the Chiefs were to being a good team this season.

The Chiefs have problems. Obviously, most of their problems are on defense, and there have been no answers provided the last month of the season. But there are offensive problems, too. Don't tell Vermeil that I wrote this, but Trent Green does a mighty fine Elvis Grbac impersonation in the 2-minute offense.

As usual, Vermeil slobbered all over Green in the postgame news conference.

“Our quarterback was spectacular,” Vermeil said. “The job that he did on that last touchdown drive; there were two or three of the plays that were just on Trent Green. I keep raving about him because I love the guy and respect him so much, and the whole squad does. Oh boy! Was he special. It's tough to do what he did tonight.”

Hey, I love Green's toughness, leadership and reliability. I don't have a problem with Green. He's a winning football player. But his turnovers — a first-quarter interception and late-game fumble — led to 10 Raider points. Why Green spiked the ball with 38 seconds to play on second down just before Tynes' winning kick is a mystery that will go unsolved. It's the kind of mental gaffe that can cost a team a football game. Vermeil, the coaching staff and Green don't know how to manage the game clock.

Thank the Chiefs for the Christmas gift, but let's keep pressuring them to go shopping this offseason.
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Old 12-26-2004, 11:50 AM   #2
Sure-Oz Sure-Oz is offline
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I fully agree on the shopping part.
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Sure-Oz in this mother****er. Resident Tweet master and maligned Royals fan.
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Old 12-26-2004, 12:16 PM   #3
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I agree with most of this. TG is not a god but a very good QB. Calling TG a Grbac is an insult far too low for Big Sexy. Jason thats hitting below the belt!

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Old 12-26-2004, 12:21 PM   #4
Sure-Oz Sure-Oz is offline
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This is from a guy that wants jeff george to splurge all over him.
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Old 12-26-2004, 12:38 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Sure-Oz
This is from a guy that wants jeff george to splurge all over him.
Damn thats hitting the nail squarely on the head.
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Old 12-26-2004, 12:43 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Sure-Oz
This is from a guy that wants jeff george to splurge all over him.
I'd love to have Jeff George splurge all over me. In fact, I'll take a good splurging from any of you males.

I adore being splurged upon.
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Old 12-26-2004, 12:47 PM   #7
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Bravo Jason! he said everything ive been trying to say the past month, only better! Dont be so easily fooled Chiefs fans. This team still has alot of problems and they better get them fixed before next season!
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Old 12-26-2004, 12:59 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Deberg_1990
Bravo Jason! he said everything ive been trying to say the past month, only better! Dont be so easily fooled Chiefs fans. This team still has alot of problems and they better get them fixed before next season!
I don't know of anybody but TJ who wishes for the Chiefs to stand pat.
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Old 12-26-2004, 02:20 PM   #9
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I'd love to have Jeff George splurge all over me. In fact, I'll take a good splurging from any of you males.

I adore being splurged upon.
You're beginning to worry me.
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Old 12-26-2004, 02:58 PM   #10
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Accurate article by Jason, even the point about Green yesterday.
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Old 12-26-2004, 03:04 PM   #11
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folks, shall we say Fatlock is on fire again!!!
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Old 12-26-2004, 03:14 PM   #12
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I don't see how anybody can criticize Trent Green. He's been practically superhuman this year.
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In the final seven games of the 2013 season, the Chiefs averaged 34.6 points per game, scored 38 points or more 4 times, and went 2-5. The NFL has ruined the sport.
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Old 12-26-2004, 03:18 PM   #13
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I think ole Whitlock demeans BOTH teams when he claims the Raiders mailed in either game the Chiefs won against them. Clearly, BOTH teams came to play yesterday evening and provided an entertaining and fantastic show for fans of the ENTIRE NFL. To say the Chiefs beat a team that has mailed in their efforts the past few weeks really diminishes not only what the Chiefs have accomplished but the fact that that the Raiders, missing MANY starters, almost beat them twice. Hence if the Raiders, a team mailing in their efforts, are playing toe to toe with a team supposedly playing their hearts out...

what EXACTLY does that say about the Chiefs? And is it good.
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Old 12-26-2004, 03:20 PM   #14
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Rats. There for a second I thought you had posted something I could agree with, mmI.
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In the final seven games of the 2013 season, the Chiefs averaged 34.6 points per game, scored 38 points or more 4 times, and went 2-5. The NFL has ruined the sport.
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Old 12-26-2004, 03:23 PM   #15
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As far as the fumble we shouldn't have been passing the ball in that situation anyway. That was awful play calling with a lead and 2 minutes on the clock. That's how you lose games and get the QB killed for no reason. For the most part this was no brainer article. Accurate for the most part though.

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