When: Sunday, Sept 15
Time: Noon, CT
Where: Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, Mo
TV Broadcast: FOX, Chris Myers, Tim Ryan, commentators, Jennifer Hale (Field reporter); DIRECTV: 708.
Radio Broadcast: Over 60 radio stations on the Chiefs Radio Network; Mitch Holthus, Len Dawson, Kendall Gammon, commentators, Chiefs Spanish Radio: La Gran D (1340 AM); Play-by-Play: Enrique Morales - Color Commentator: Oscar Monterroso - Sideline Reporter: Ricardo Soto
SIRIUS: 117 (Dal.), 128 (KC). XM: 227 (KC)
Two 1-0 teams will take the field at Arrowhead on Sunday, but to listen to some of the media and fans that follow the Kansas City Chiefs and Dallas Cowboys, you would think both teams lost their games with all the “Yeah, but ….” statements you hear.
- The Chiefs won 28-2 in their biggest margin of victory on Opening Day since a 59-7 beatdown of the Denver Broncos in 1963. “Yeah, but it was JUST Jacksonville” is what you hear.
- The Cowboys beat arch-rival New York Giants and their hated QB, Eli Manning, at home for the first time in five years on Sunday Night Football, 36-31. They forced the Giants to turn the ball over a mind-numbing six times. “Yeah, but they barely won the game DESPITE getting six turnovers” is what you hear.
Welcome to the world of being a fan of underachieving teams. Even when they win, some people believe it was a fluke and not because anyone on the coaching staff knows what they’re doing, or the opposition is the worst team in the history of the sport.
The Cowboys, of course, are THE team in the state of Texas, which means that 15 reporters cover QB Tony Romo taking a bowel movement after lunch. (“Bill … we’re told Romo had a grilled chicken breast and steamed veggies with a protein water for lunch. Extended coverage on tonight’s two-hour Cowboys wrap-up show at 11:00 p.m.! Back to you in the studio!!”) Everything the Cowboys do is over-reported and over-analyzed to the point of insanity.
But that’s what you get when you dub yourself, “America’s Team” … your owner is Jerry Jones … and you play your home games in AT&T Stadium, a $1.3 billion luxury palace that 98% of real Cowboys fans would trade in a heartbeat for the return of their beloved late, great Texas Stadium. For all their hype and publicity, the truth is that it has been 18 years since their last Super Bowl appearance. That’s 17 years too long for the fans in the big hats and bigger belt buckles.
Here locally, for the past 20 years, Arrowhead Stadium was a place to be feared by opponents, and the Chiefs’ fans (and their other-worldly tailgating experience) became legendary around the NFL for their passion, loyalty and ability to create ear-splitting decibel levels even in an open-air stadium. The Chiefs were on national television almost as much as the Cowboys. However, in the last four years??? Not so much. Even worse than the Cowboys, the Chiefs have not been in the Super Bowl since Richard Nixon was the POTUS, and pre-Watergate.
One of the two teams will silence the “Yeah, but’s” (or, as your Chiefs Examiner calls them, the “Yeah Buttheads”) a little bit more with a win this Sunday. And as far as last week is concerned, it should be pointed out that the Chiefs were WORSE than Jacksonville last year and the two teams with new coaching staffs could not have looked further apart in the development stage.
And the Cowboys’ six turnovers forced in the Giants game was nearly 33% of their total for the 2012 season and they sent a Manning brother home for the first time in his career with a loss at AT&T. What’s not to like?
Here are three things Chiefs fans should be watching on Sunday if the Chiefs are going to start 2013 with a 2-0 record:
- Dwayne Bowe needs seven catches and 100+ receiving yards. Yeah, the Cowboys have two good cornerbacks in second-year man Morris Claiborne and former Chief, Brandon Carr, but they aren’t Deion Sanders and Rod Woodson either so throw the ball Dwayne Bowe’s way early and often. It was great watching QB Alex Smith get the ball to nine different receivers in the Chiefs win, but Bowe only getting 4 catches for 30 yards was a joke. If Bowe can get at least double-digit targets in the Cowboys’ game and can pull down at least 7 of them for 100 yards or more, it will open up the rest of the offense and loosen things up along the line of scrimmage. When Bowe gets involved, the Chiefs lives will be better on Sunday. The Chiefs will use the 2014 off-season and draft to improve the wide receiver position, but for now they must get the ball to Bowe because he is their best.
- Dontari Poe needs to take the rookie center to school. It was nice to see Chiefs LB Justin Houston win the AFC Defensive Player of the Week honor on Wednesday, but many Chiefs fans would say that the biggest impact in the game was made by tackle Dontari Poe, who easily had his best game as a pro. This week, Poe will line up opposite Travis Frederick, a rookie center out of Wisconsin. Frederick has played well for a rookie during preseason and in Dallas’ first game last week, but even the NY Giants don’t have a defensive tackle that has Poe’s athleticism. KC Defensive Coordinator Bob Sutton seemed to take the leash off of Poe last week and Dontari spent a lot of time in Jacksonville’s backfield destroying the pocket. If the Chiefs don’t want a repeat of Romo’s last visit to Kansas City in 2009 (351 yds passing, 2 TDs in 26-20 win in OT), they need to get defenders in his face when he throws.
- Hang onto the ball. Any fan that watched 10 minutes of any game in 2012 knows what I’m talking about here. If the Chiefs have more turnovers than they create, they’ll lose. If they are on the plus-side of the turnover ratio, they win. So hang onto the ball … (we’re all looking at you, Knile Davis!)
Prediction: The Cowboys might be suffering a bit of a letdown after getting the Eli Manning-sized monkey off their backs last week and beating Peyton’s little brother for the first time at AT&T Stadium. The Chiefs have been looking forward to this Sunday since the last minute of the last game of 2012 because you get the feeling that the organization truly wants to win their home fans back. The Chiefs home opener, gorgeous weather, a star-studded NFC opponent, and plenty of tailgating smoke keeps the home team focused and the Chiefs win a close one at home.
Chiefs – 23, Cowboys - 21.
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. My best friend and brother-from-another-mother Mike is perhaps the ultimate Dallas fan, so here’s hoping both teams play well and our beloved Men in Red come out with a win. However, as much as I love my best friend, I’ll take a 40-0 win for KC too. Hey, Chiefs blood is thicker than Cowboy water.
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