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Cheifs Chatter


Monday Morning Quarterback:
Chargers provide present for KCl

12/24/2001

by CK Rairden
Landmark columnist

Merry Christmas Chiefs.

That was ugly. But it was a needed step, and a win. The Chiefs, fifteen weeks into the schedule have their first winning streak, achieved when they outlasted the Chargers 20-17 on Sunday at Arrowhead. It was a game they should not have won, a game where both the coaches and players made terrible decisions and mistakes, but the team pulled it off.

The San Diego Chargers did just what was expected and concentrated on NFL rushing leader RB Priest Holmes. They reasonably contained him; Holmes had 80 yards on 23 carries. That put the pressure late in the game on Chiefs QB Trent Green.

Green responded, with a little help from Chargers S Rodney Harrison, and led the Chiefs on an 8-play 65-yard drive that ended in a 1-yard TD plunge by RB Tony Richardson.

The Chiefs opened the game with a stellar offensive drive where Green looked sharp and converted on 4 straight 3rd downs with pass completions.

The last 3rd down completion was a 3-yard TD pass to seldom used TE Jason Dunn. It gave the Chiefs a nice beginning, but the defense would surrender a quick TD drive by the Chargers and the score was tied 7-7 before the Chiefs offense would see the ball again.
The Chiefs then struggled for the remainder of the game and it was brutal to watch.

QB Trent Green looked brilliant on the first drive and the last drive. In between those two pieces of work he had some poor decision making moments. He threw an awful pick that led to the Chargers go-ahead touchdown where he once again threw directly into double-coverage. He tossed an earlier interception where he under threw RB Tony Richardson, and Richardson didn’t make a play on the ball.

However Green may have found an intangible. There was a distinct positive that he provided during the game. His running ability. What? That’s right; Trent Green found some wheels and put together some nice runs for yardage finishing the game with 5 rushes for 36 yards.

If he can provide that on a weekly basis his value as a QB just increased.

His pass on the 4th quarter drive for 21 yards to WR Snoop Minnis on 3rd and 4 was a thing of beauty. It was a perfect spiral, a perfect placement and a perfect pass.
He threaded the dart through 3 San Diego defenders and Minnis ran an accurate route and made a fine catch.

But let’s face it—the Chiefs needed some help from the Chargers on the game winning drive. On that drive KC received some early Christmas gifts from the Chargers defense. Three first downs were the result of defensive penalties from the Bolts.

The main gift was from Chargers S Rodney Harrison. Trent Green had made another poor decision and tried to force the ball into FB Tony Richardson. The ball was deflected and picked off by the Chargers. Had that stood it would have been a three INT game for Green.

But it didn’t. Santa Harrison had delivered a cheap shot with a hard left forearm to the face of Trent Green. The flag came out immediately. The INT was for naught, and the drive continued.

Harrison would be flagged again later in the drive on a hold against TE Tony Gonzalez.

Two plays later, the Chiefs would score the go ahead TD and the Bolts would be on their way to losing their eighth straight game.

It’s still not clear if this Chiefs team posses an “A” game. If the team does have one, they didn’t bring it on Sunday versus the Bolts.

But it didn’t matter in this instance. The Chiefs played ugly. And that didn’t matter in this instance either. The Chiefs received some gifts from the Chargers and won.

Merry Christmas Chiefs.