FROM THE STABLES: This Loss Still Hurts!!!

The Kansas City Chiefs accomplished something on Sunday that no Chiefs team has ever done before in their 45 year history. How they blew an 18 point lead is something a lot of Chiefs fans are probably asking themselves right now and for the next several weeks.

Normally in this column we review the spin that the opponent's press has on the game, but today we are just going to give the Philadelphia perspective on what was one of the most disturbing Chiefs losses in many years. How does a team blow an 18 point lead? How does an offense that was hitting on all cylinders in the first 20 minutes of the game, blow a gasket?

Even further how does a defense leave Terrell Owens uncovered for most of the game? Are Chiefs fans quitters? What did the Philly writers think about the Chiefs fans leaving Arrowhead Stadium early? From the Stables reviews the Philly spin on stories from the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Philadelphia Daily News.

DATELINE Philadelphia Inquirer by Bob Brookover - Donovan McNabb, playing through injury, threw three touchdown passes and rookie kicker Todd France kicked three field goals to lead the Eagles to a 37-31 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs. The strengths of the Eagles were their weaknesses in the first half. The run defense allowed Chiefs running back Priest Holmes to run at will for 70 yards and a touchdown. The special teams had a fumble that led to a Kansas City touchdown, a blocked field goal, a missed extra point and allowed a kickoff return for a touchdown.

After allowing only 79 rushing yards in their previous two games, the Eagles couldn't stop Holmes and the Kansas City Chiefs' running attack in the first quarter and found themselves down 17-0 just three plays into the second quarter. A 26-yard return on the opening kickoff by Dante Hall set the Chiefs up at the 37-yard line and they needed just nine plays to get in the end zone on their opening drive. Holmes covered 31 yards on just six carries, going airborne for the final three yards and his third touchdown of the season with just over five minutes gone in the opening quarter.

After the Eagles failed to convert on a third-and-three play in Chiefs' territory, Dirk Johnson hit a punt that pinned Kansas City at its own 4-yard line. Holmes immediately got the Chiefs out of trouble with a 12-yard run, which triggered an eight-play 76-yard drive that ended with a 38-yard field goal by Lawrence Tynes. Roderick Hood fumbled the ensuing kickoff and Kansas City's Chris Griffin covered at the Eagles' 27-yard line. Six plays later, quarterback Trent Green hit Eddie Kennison at the 3-yard line and Hood tackled him into the end zone, giving the Chiefs a touchdown and a 17-0 lead.

When the Eagles finally got a chance to put some points on the board in the second quarter, France had a 40-yard field-goal attempt blocked by the Chiefs' Eric Hicks. After Brown put the Eagles on the board with the interception return, the Chiefs wasted no time in getting back the points. Hall, who had five career kickoff returns for touchdowns, added another, going 96 yards for the score.

From the Stables - Really no spin needed by the Philly writer. I guess why spin it when it was all out there for the whole world to see. The Chiefs were absolutely dominating the game until the Larry Johnson fumble. After the fumble the Eagles went on a 31-0 run in which no team in the NFL could recover and that includes the home town Chiefs.

Kansas City still made a game of it, but by then most of Arrowhead Stadium crowd had already headed for the parking lots to either drown their sorrows in some adult beverage. Or further they just wanted to get the heck out of Dodge (I mean Arrowhead) as fast as they could. I know most of the Chiefs fans I was around were asking how TO was so wide open most of the day or where Tony Gonzalez was most of the day.

DATELINE Philadelphia Daily News by Les Bowen - Jeff Lurie was amazed. Amazed at the Eagles' huge comeback for a 37-31 victory, certainly; the Kansas City Chiefs apparently never had blown an 18-point lead to lose at home before. But the Eagles chairman was even more amazed at what he saw after Sheldon Brown's second interception of the game, which gave the Birds the ball back with a 34-24 lead and 7 minutes, 10 seconds left to play. Suddenly, the red sea of fans parted. They had howled and chanted and rocked Arrowhead Stadium while their team ran up leads of 17-0 and 24-6.

Now they were quietly heading for the parking lots. Big splotches of orange - the color most of the seats are painted - bloomed on the steep red canyon walls surrounding the field.

The Chiefs bill Arrowhead as the NFL's loudest stadium. They were 17-3 in their previous 20 games against NFC teams here before yesterday. But it got awful darned quiet down the stretch, as the Eagles scored 31 points in a row before allowing a late Dante Hall TD catch. Had the Chiefs recovered their onside kick with 1:24 left and scored to win, almost none of their fans would have seen it.

That was the part that astounded Lurie, after he got over being astonished by the comeback. "Philadelphia, Boston, New York - that would never happen in an East Coast city,'' Lurie said.

You hear a lot about how supportive fans are in the Midwest; they don't boo, they put up with things that would have the locals marching on the stadium with pitchforks and torches back East. But in Philadelphia, anyway, while fans might get furious, they don't often leave. They don't give up on the Eagles, just as the Eagles didn't give up on themselves yesterday. The calendar just turned to October, so it's really hard to say that any one game proved or established very much, long term. Donovan McNabb's magnificent effort (33-for-48, 369 yards, three touchdowns, one interception), playing with a sports hernia, took a lot out of the quarterback; his chances of doing this sort of thing all the way into the Super Bowl still don't seem great.

But the Eagles who played in this game will long remember what they did, and how they had those supportive Midwesterners turning for the exits early.

"There's nothing better than that,'' said reserve linebacker Mike Labinjo, who forced a Hall fumble on a kickoff return that Reno Mahe recovered. That play set up L.J. Smith's TD catch, which gave the Birds their 34-24 edge. "That's a good, quality win. That's a win that builds championship teams... Once we got that crowd out of the game, that helped a lot. I've never seen anything like that [when the fans started to leave]. It was only a 10-point game, and they're leaving already?''

"You don't see it that often in the NFL, against a good football team in their stadium; everyone knows it's a tough place to play,'' Lurie said. "It said a lot about the team. "Nothing is easy in this game, especially when your body is in a position where you feel like you can't do what you're used to doing," said McNabb, who had another huge second half, throwing for 240 yards. "I'm willing to do whatever it takes to help this team win games.''

The disaster seemed to be snowballing early - not only did Kansas City roll down the field for its first touchdown, and then for a field goal the next time it had the ball, but Rod Hood fumbled away the kickoff after the field goal, and the Chiefs quickly made it 17-0 on one of Eddie Kennison's seven catches for 109 yards, this one at the expense of Hood.

Then, even after Brown brought the Eagles to life, making Trent Green think he was in one coverage and switching into another at the snap, the pratfalls continued. A low snap helped lead to a block on Todd France's first career field-goal attempt. The next snap from reliable Mike Bartrum, on the extra point after Brown's TD, was so bad Koy Detmer just picked the ball up and heaved it away.

Then, Labinjo and the rest of the backside of the Eagles' coverage unit got burned when Hall cut back on the return of the kickoff following Brown's touchdown, Hall running it 96 yards for a touchdown. That blow, at the time, sure looked fatal. It was Hall's sixth career kickoff return for a touchdown, tying an NFL record. "I'm not sure it can get any worse than the first half,'' Reid said afterward. "They came back and battled... Everybody had a piece of the pie here.''

After the final gun sounded, as the Chiefs filed into their locker room, no one spoke. The only noise was coming from down the hall, where the Eagles were dressing. They sounded really loud.

From the Stables- I can't believe this Philly sportswriter is calling out the Chiefs fans! Philadelphia fans are known for being some of the rudest crudest fans in the NFL. They have even booed Santa Clause in Philadelphia. He does have a point though, why did the Chiefs fans leave when the Eagles only had a 10pt lead? I know from my point of view that the game was over, because the Chiefs offense, defense and special teams had basically disappeared. Do I blame the fans for leaving early? >BR?>BR?Well, I'm one of those fans who get to the stadium an hour before kickoff and generally stay until everyone else is gone before getting out of my seat. I know I felt the same hopelessness that many who left early felt, but to call the Chiefs fans out for leaving early is hilarious! The Chiefs fans are generally considered among the best in the NFL and they don't call Arrowhead Stadium the loudest the NFL for nothing you know.

I certainly hope the Chiefs meet the Eagles down the road in Detroit because I think the Chiefs have something to show the Eagles and the Chiefs fans have something to show Jeffrey Lurie and the rest of Philadelphia.

Check back after the Chiefs bye week as From the Stables will be reviewing what the Washington DC press has to say about the Chiefs/Redskins game in a couple of weeks. We'll review the columns and commentary to see the spin they put on the game and Warpaint Illustrated's From the Stables will be there to shine the light on them.

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