After an auspicious beginning, that found the Chiefs in a 7-0 hole, the Chiefs defense set the tone and carried the offense until they found their groove in the second quarter. Chiefs quarterback Trent Green's very first pass was intercepted by Steelers safety Chad Scott for a 26-yard score.
In the next possession, the Chiefs offense stalled and the Steelers offensive juggernaut was alive and well. Pittsburgh quarterback Tommy Maddux found Hinds Ward for a 50-yard catch that put the ball inside the Chiefs 10-yard line. But the defense, already down 7-0, held the Steelers out of the end zone and trailed 10-0.
But on the ensuing kick-off Dante Hall ran back the kick 100-yards to the opposite end zone to make the score 10-7. That play seemed to spark the Chiefs. It however did not spark Trent Green who threw his second interception of the day. That led to another score and the Steelers had the Chiefs reeling again and in a hole 17-7 in the second quarter.
But then the heavens opened and Priest Holmes took over the game. With the passing game in a funk, Holmes ran up and down the field. He scored his first of three touchdowns by leaping into the end zone. After the game, it was learned that Holmes had injured his ribs on the play, but he knew of his importance to the team and the band played on.
The performance of Holmes was even more impressive considering the rest of the offense was not clicking. The Steelers talked all week about stopping Holmes. They did a great job of it early in the first quarter and again in the third quarter. Green struggled even though he had respectable numbers on day in which he threw for 125 yards on 15-20. Actually it was 17-20 if you factor in the two passes caught by the Steelers.
He did manage to hit back-up tight end Jason Dunn for a 3-yard pass that put the Chiefs up for good at 21-17. Green was not at ease in the pocket until Holmes started getting into a flow. But Green never wavered; he kept at it and threw short routes that allowed his receivers and backs get the yards down field. Both Eddie Kennison and Johnnie Morton made big catches to keep drives alive.
The star of the day has to go to the Chiefs defense. They intercepted Maddux three times including one for a touchdown by safety Jerome Woods. Though Maddux threw for 336 yards, the Chiefs bend don't break defense stiffened when the Steelers appeared to be making a run.
With the score 34-20, linebacker Shawn Barber intercepted a Maddux pass in the end zone that broke their back in the third quarter. The pass rush that was so strong in the Chargers game did not show up until the second half when Ryan Sims recorded two sacks and Gary Stills added one that altered the success of Maddux.
The Chiefs added one last thumping as Holmes scored his third and last touchdown of the game from 31 yards out.
The Chiefs stand 2-0 and are tied with the AFC West lead with Denver who rocked the Chargers 37-13. Next week the Chiefs are on the road in Houston to face the Texans who lost on Sunday 31-10.