Green Steps Up In Win Over the Packers

Quarterback Trent Green was feeling the heat from Kansas City fans recently after the Chiefs' offense twice failed to muster more than 265 yards in back-to-back wins over Baltimore and Denver.

Fans didn't care, apparently, that the Chiefs won both games. They also didn't seem to acknowledge that Kansas City's offense had been going up against two Top 10 defenses.

No, all that seemed to matter to never-satisfied fans was that a Chiefs offense that was thrilling when it led the league in scoring during last year's 8-8 campaign was suddenly just mediocre by definition -- 15th in total offense after five straight victories.

Well, Green fired back Sunday. His 400-yard, three-touchdown, no-interception game at Green Bay lifted the Chiefs to the greatest fourth-quarter comeback in club history, a 40-34 overtime win that saw KC rally from a 31-14 fourth-quarter deficit to remain unbeaten at 6-0.

It was a "breakthrough" game for Green, coach Dick Vermeil said Monday.

"He was on the field with a future Hall of Famer (in Packers quarterback Brett Favre) and performed equally as well before coming out the winner," Vermeil said of Green, who hit 10 of 18 passes in the fourth quarter and overtime for 210 yards and one TD, the 51-yard walk-off bomb to Eddie Kennison. "He made all the throws you have to make to be considered a fine quarterback.

"He needed a breakthrough game this year like he had against Miami last year," Vermeil said of Green's 328-yard, five-TD effort in Week Four last year. "Because not only does the quarterback break through when he starts performing like that, but so do the offensive coaches. It becomes easier to call plays -- to put more pressure on the guy -- when he has the kind of game that makes you say, 'Hey, it's here. It's going.' You build on that."

It was Green's best yardage day as a Chief, and the second-greatest of his injury-shortened career. More important, though, was the way Green accepted the challenge of taking to the air when the Chiefs fell behind 14-0 in the first quarter and 31-14 in the third.

The challenge in Green Bay was vastly different than he faced in close-to-the-wire wins over Baltimore and Denver, Green explained.

"We wanted to make sure we didn't turn the ball over and give their offense the short field," Green said of the often-conservative play calling in the previous two wins. "We couldn't take as many chances as we did (against Green Bay).

"When you're down 17, you start throwing the ball -- a lot. (The more wide-open offense) was necessary for us to win the game."

And Green did what was necessary in throwing a season-high 45 times. He opened things up by hitting Johnnie Morton in full stride for a 38-yard gain, then came back two plays later and found Morton on the dead run again for 21. Two plays later he threw a 26-yard strike to Tony Gonzalez and the Chiefs cut an early two-touchdown deficit to 14-7.

It was the offensive series that got the Chiefs back in the game. Not that there weren't a ton of other huge plays that allowed Kansas City to remain undefeated in three appearances at Lambeau Field.

Two Dante Hall punt returns of 30 and 32 yards set up short-field TD drives. Jerome Woods' interception and 71-yard return of Favre's only mistake of the day produced a fourth-quarter score. Woods later forced an Ahman Green fumble at midfield in overtime.

But Green also provided a highlight reel. He hit a big 67-yard strike to Gonzalez in the drive for the field goal that tied the game at 31-31. Green later hit five of eight passes for 51 yards in the 63-yard drive that produced another game-tying field goal at 34-34 with just five seconds left in regulation.

His game-winning bomb to a streaking Gonzalez was a nice piece of work, coming off a strong play-action fake set up by nine straight Priest Holmes runs in the first OT drive that resulted in a blocked field goal. Top Stories