The Kansas City Chiefs and Oakland Raiders put on an old-fashioned 1960’s AFL slugfest at Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday but the Chiefs defense was better, keying a 24-7 win that keeps Kansas City undefeated and 6-0.
You could almost feel the spirits of Lamar Hunt and Al Davis celebrating for most of the afternoon in a game that was much closer than the final score indicated.
Running back Jamaal Charles couldn’t find much room to run against a very stout Oakland defense, but he was able to score two touchdowns. The other 10 players on offense – including QB Alex Smith - might want to donate their game checks to charity as none of them did enough to deserve them.
The only space I’ll waste on the offensive non-performance today is to congratulate them on not imploding completely like the Chiefs offense has done throughout the six-game home losing streak to the Raiders that was snapped Sunday.
Donnie Avery coughed the ball up at the Oakland 12-yard line for the only KC turnover of the game. At worst, the Chiefs could have gotten a field goal out of it and potentially a touchdown that could have broken the game open much earlier.
Chiefs coach Andy Reid and his staff have to figure out a way to get this offense untracked quickly if the Chiefs are going to go where this defense and special teams could get them. The offense was mostly abysmal … and I’m being nice when I say it was abysmal.
But the Chiefs defense? Ohhhhhh, what a defense!
The Chiefs sacked Oakland’s quarterback, Terrelle Pryor, 10 times, including a 3.5 sack day from Tamba Hali, and intercepted him three times in the second half. Safety Quintin Demps got his third interception in the last three weeks and set up the Chiefs go-ahead touchdown in the third quarter.
Rookie corner Marcus Cooper, starting for the injured Brandon Flowers, picked off his second interception in the last two weeks late in the fourth quarter that set up a Ryan Succop field goal that made the score 17-7 Chiefs.
The final stake in the vampiric heart of the late Al Davis came when Husain Abdullah cut in front of a Raiders receiver and returned the Chiefs third interception of the day 44-yards for a touchdown with 1:34 to play for the game’s final points.
Finally, the sell-out crowd of 73,000+ could relax enough to get their World Record as the Loudest Outdoor Venue, beating Seattle’s mark set last year. The crowd blasted a noise level of 137.5 decibels and though your Chiefs Examiner blew this off as a cheesy publicity stunt, the energy from the Chiefs Faithful was truly a game-changer. I stand corrected because … damn!
Feeding off the crowd, Derrick Johnson finished the game for the Chiefs with 9 tackles and two sacks of Pryor himself. Eric Berry added 6 more tackles and a sack. Justin Houston, who came into the game leading the NFL in sacks, seemed to be inches away from Pryor several times before finally bringing him down in the fourth quarter to give him 9.5 sacks on the year. Even Tyson Jackson and Mike Catapano got into the act with one sack apiece. Finally, Abdullah was credited with a half-sack to go along with his pick-six touchdown.
However the gold star for effort on the day goes to Hali, who was everywhere the ball was on defense. The XXX-year linebacker had three tackles (all for a loss), 1 assisted tackle, the 3.5 sacks, and an amazing five more hits on the Raiders quarterback. There is no doubt that Pryor will have nightmares about Hali for a long, long time.
Now the historically bad defensive unit that couldn’t sack the QB or get turnovers in 2012 in route to a 2-14 record, leads the NFL with 31 sacks and 18 turnovers caused. Both marks are more than they had in either category last year. Throw in their league-leading six returns for touchdowns and there is no question as to how this team remains undefeated.
Despite the terrible play of the offense, it was a good start to the Chiefs three-game home stand that could conceivably see them finish up at … 9-0?? Next up are the 2-4 Houston Texans who have lost four games in a row … possibly lost their QB today … and gave up four turnovers – including a pick-six and a special teams score – in a 38-13 home loss to the St. Louis Rams. And they’re coming in to Arrowhead??
Now that is something to scream about!!
Like this article? If you want your Chiefs news delivered with an Examiner twist, simply hit the SUBSCRIBE button on this page. It’s FREE and you can cancel at any time. A word of advice from your Chiefs Examiner after today’s win – just enjoy it and revel in the fact that the Chiefs are one of only two undefeated teams left in the NFL. Yeah, the offense stunk today, but they have been more than adequate in the other five games. When one of those know-it-alls in your school or office start talking about needing to play better offense in the playoffs, just ask them if you can enjoy the final 11 weeks of the season first and THEN worry about the playoffs.
As a side note, recently there have been some problems with e-mail delivery for some Examiner subscribers (not just mine) and they are not receiving notices about articles until several days later. Personally, I was thrilled to receive my Titans preview article notification this past Thursday – six full days after I published it. The geeks and nerds in Tech are working hard on it and I apologize if it happens again.
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