At Least the Punter Brought the ‘A' Game

Last night's loss to the Denver Broncos stunned the Chiefs organization and fans throughout the Red and Gold Nation. One of the most prolific offenses in the league was all but shut down and the ‘new and improved' defense looked worse than it did last year. The Broncos, on the other hand, came out to play for a huge home-team crowd for Monday Night prime time.

The game started off bad, and slid steadily downhill from there. Dante Hall almost showed a spark, but never had the chance to produce. In fact, most of Denver's many kickoffs sailed out of the end zone. Then our offense was held to a punt on the first drive. And the second. And the third.

Actually, they did not even produce a point until seconds before the half, when Tynes connected on a short field goal.

Speaking of the punting game, that may have been the only bright spot for KC. Colquitt punted 6 times, and forced the returner to muff once. Of course, that loose ball was recovered by a Denver player, because that is just how the game was going. Other than one holding penalty, though, the punting squad was the only aspect of the team that looked good.

"When you come out and lose like that, the coaches got beat, and the players got beat." Vermeil said after the game, and it was obvious that there was plenty of blame to go around.

The game stats show a few of the reasons we lost. 13 penalties for 118 yards is the first stat that comes to mind. Very few teams can win on the road when you give up that kind of yardage in penalties alone. The offensive line couldn't seem to get Green enough time to throw the ball (not that a lot of receivers were open) and that led to holding calls. The sheer frustration that the team must have felt while down 20-0 may have fueled the numerous personal fouls. The crowd definitely contributed to some off-sides calls. The refs did have some questionable calls, but even without bad calls, it was too late.

There were a few flashes other than the punter, but not many. Eddie Kennison made a couple very good looking plays, but the offense couldn't get the ball to him very often. Greg Wesley made some awesome tackles, but he couldn't be everywhere at once. DJ and Knight laid a hit on Rod Smith that had him thinking he was Batman, but that was after the nails were already in the coffin lid. And Parker's TD catch was far too little and too late, and couldn't erase the several passes he dropped earlier.

Wendell Phillips once said "What is defeat? Nothing but education; nothing but the first step to something better."

The Chiefs are 2-1 and still lead the AFC West, albeit they are tied with the Donkeys now. One loss is not the end of the season, and we escaped with no injuries except to our pride. Hopefully the team has tasted the bitterness of defeat and decided that they don't like it.

Next week, we play the Eagles. They have shown some weakness, and are coming in a bit dinged up. After that is the bye week, and then Warfield and Welbourn will be back and Roaf will be healthy. It was obvious that the first four games were the toughest, and we have proven that we can win. Now we have gotten that first loss out of the way, too, and can now continue with our march to the playoffs.

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