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Cheifs Chatter

Take a Memo

Dante does it again; and Randy Cross

Posted 9-29-03

by CK Rairden
Landmark columnist


It was ugly, but the Chiefs need not apologize. Despite being outplayed for most of the second half, the Chiefs can now answer a tough team in a tough game with playmakers.
For the second straight week, CB Dexter McCleon showed that he was a steal as a free agent pick up in the off-season. For the second straight week, he had two takeaways. McCleon is cemented in at the starting corner position because he does what the Chiefs need in the secondary. He makes plays. As does Dante Hall, who set a record with a TD return in his third straight NFL game.

This time—it shut down the Ravens momentum late in the 4th quarter and gave the Chiefs a 17-10 lead. Words can’t describe Big Play Dante right now—I won’t even try.
And for those who think Marc Boerigter isn’t making plays, check him out on special teams coverage. The Chiefs really had no business winning this game, but thanks to their playmakers—they did. This was a tough road test and the Chiefs did just enough to pass that test with a win. No apology necessary.

****

—The “X-Man” Johnny Morton came up huge and showed that he can make plays, with a 109 total yards, and a nifty 36-yard run on the Chiefs only offensive TD drive.

—How spoiled are the Chiefs? Their ultimate bring it every week playmaker had an “off day“….well at least for Priest. Priest Holmes had 90 yards rushing and 103 total yards.

—The Chiefs opening drive looked promising, but TE Tony Gonzalez let a third down catch that would have resulted in a first down slip through his hands at the Ravens 47-yard line.

—QB Trent Green finally protected the ball and that resulted in the Chiefs ending up with a plus 4 in turnover ratio.

—Did I mention Dexter McCleon? He was in perfect position to shut down Jamal Lewis on the Chiefs 8-yard line on a 4th and 1 play in the first quarter. McCleon 1 on 1 against Lewis wasn’t attractive, but Lewis stumbled and was stopped for no gain.

—That was another ridiculous call by Ravens head coach Brian Billick. Instead of taking three sure points he got greedy. Billick and Mike Martz—separated at birth?

—Gary Stills turned in another great defensive play late in the second quarter that stopped a Ravens drive. On a 3rd and 3 from the KC 30 Stills sacked Ravens QB Kyle Boller for an 11-yard loss taking the Ravens out of FG range.

—TE Jason Dunn had another big catch, this time a 15-yard catch on 3rd and 3 that took the Chiefs down to the Baltimore 3-yard line. Two plays later the Chiefs scored their only offensive TD.

—That came on a Trent Green to Tony Gonzalez 1-yard TD pass.

****RANT ALERT****

CROSS-EYED COMMENTARY

—Randy Cross was unbearable as a color commentator as the game wore on. Apparently he spent the week in Baltimore with his nose up Brian Billick’s backside as his descriptions of the Ravens were over the top. The Ravens in his Cross-eyed look are the greatest young team ever, and he said it after every play, whether good or bad for Baltimore. The Ravens played a tough, hard game and deserve accolades, but if you had no picture and only Cross to describe the game for you, the Chiefs lost 55-0. His bias in the fourth quarter had to wear on the nerves of any Chiefs fan. After each play Cross would say—-“You’ve got to be impressed with the Ravens…[fill in the blank].” for KC fans—he was unbearable.

****END RANT ALERT****

Playmakers made plays; it’s been a long time since the Chiefs could say that on the road. They struggled and at times were beaten physically, but they hung tough and made the plays it took to win.

That gives them only their second 4-0 start in team history and sets up an AFC West showdown for 1st place against the 4-0 Denver Broncos. The Broncos have owned the Chiefs lately, but their new QB Jake (the snake) Plummer has always turned into Jake “the mistake” Plummer when he has stepped between the lines at Arrowhead.

Last season, he tossed three interceptions in a 49-0 loss. But Plummer isn’t with the lowly Arizona Cardinals any more. This is for the early lead of the AFC West, and the Chiefs get the chance to take the early AFC West lead at Arrowhead—where the mystique has returned.

(CK Rairden can be reached by email at ckden@yahoo.com)