Chiefs Show Grit Defeat Redskins 28-21

It wasn't pretty but in the NFL every win counts and that was the case Sunday afternoon as the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Washington Redskins 28-21 in front of a packed house in Arrowhead.

You can never have enough good fortune in the NFL. Consider the outcome of this game when you factor in the fact, wide receiver Eddie Kennison didn't catch a single pass. Then you factor in tight end Tony Gonzalez who only caught two passes and the vaulted running game struggled to get into any type of flow. Something else had to go right for the Chiefs. Thanks to three turnovers that led to ten points and the amazing play of defensive end Jared Allen and safety Sammy Knight, Kansas City held on for a much needed victory.

On the games opening drive, Washington Redskins made it look easy as the Kansas City defense was powerless to stop the efficient offense of the visitors from the nations capital. The Redskins didn't face a 3rd and long until they were inside the Chiefs red zone. But their fortunes changed as defensive end Jared Allen sacked Washington quarterback Mark Brunell. On the play the ball fell to the ground and Allen jumped on the loose ball.

That play turned the hometown crowd in the Chiefs favor and the offense went on attack for the first time in the game. Using a no-huddle offense Kansas City moved the ball. On the drive the Chiefs made an effort to get the ball to tight end Tony Gonzalez. On two occasions, linebacker Marcus Washington was called for two penalties that included a pass interference penalty that put the Chiefs deep in Redskins territory.

However the 14-play drive stalled and Kansas City had to settle for a 20-yard field goal by kicker Lawrence Tynes as the Chiefs led 3-0 with just 2:45 left in the fast paced first quarter.

After the ensuing kick-off Brunell went back to work. Picking on Chiefs cornerback Dexter McCleon, the Redskins quarterback hit Santana Moss for a 35-yard gain. On the next play Clinton Portis who had 37 yards rushing in the first quarter, pushed the ball to the Chiefs 5-yard line setting up a first and goal.

Two players later Brunell hit Moss for a 4-yard touchdown strike that gave the Redskins a 7-3 lead in the opening minutes of the second quarter. Again, Washington moved the ball at will against the Chiefs defense.

After both teams failed to pick-up a first down, the Chiefs offense went back to work at their own 26-yard line. That's when Mr. Excitement Larry Johnson entered the game. On his first carry he ripped off a 19-yard gain. After a five yard run by Johnson, Trent Green hit wide receiver Samie Parker for a 16-yard gain and Dante Hall for a 19-yard catch. But the drive stalled and Kansas City had to settle for a 38-yard field goal by kicker Lawrence Tynes. That made the score 7-6 in favor of the Redskins.

On the next possession the Redskins faced a third and long. This time the Chiefs defense forced its second turnover of the half. Back-up safety Jerome Woods hit Brunell scrambling out of the pocket and Jared Allen recovered his second loose ball of the game.

With the ball at the Redskins 39-yard line, the Chiefs offense went back to work. But the offensive line let the team down as the Chiefs had three plays that produced eight negative yards and Kansas City was forced to punt at the two-minute warning.

In the second half the Chiefs offense went back to work. Thanks to an 11-yard scramble that put the ball at midfield, Green completed a 21-yard screen pass to Priest Holmes. After a personal foul penalty on linebacker Marcus Washington put the ball at the Redskins 15-yard line.

After an 8-yard run by Larry Johnson, Holmes ran around tackle Willie Roaf for a five-yard scoring drive that made the score 12-7. Instead of kicking the extra point, the Chiefs went for a two-point conversion. They were rewarded for their efforts as Green hit Marc Boerigter in the corner of the end zone and that gave Kansas City a 14-7 lead with 11:38 left in the third quarter.

It was time for the Chiefs defense to make a stand after the offense came out of their funk. On the Redskins next possession it took them two plays to get into the end zone. After a ten-yard sack by defensive tackle John Browning on Brunell, the Redskins quarterback threw a screen pass to wide receiver Santana Moss that resulted in a 78-yard touchdown that knotted the score 14-14 with 10:48 remaining in the third quarter. On the play Chiefs safety Greg Wesley took the wrong angle on Moss and the Redskins sprinter ran untouched into the end zone. It was his second touchdown of the game.

The Chiefs offense looked predictable and was unable to get a first down. They turned the ball back over to the Redskins who quickly moved into Chiefs territory. The defense had them stopped at one point but cornerback Dexter McCleon was called for a holding penalty trying to cover Moss. If not for that penalty, the Redskins would have been forced to punt.

But then lightning struck as defensive end Carlos Hall knocked the ball out of the hands of Redskins running back Rock Cartwright. Safety Sammy Knight picked up the loose ball and ran the ball back 80-yards for a touchdown. On the play defensive end Jared Allen, knocked Cartwright away from the ball and Knight scored his fifth professional touchdown. That gave the Chiefs a 21-14 lead with 5:40 left in the third quarter.

On the ensuing kick-off the Redskins quickly managed three first downs and drove right into Chiefs territory. Kansas City had another apparent turnover as Wesley intercepted a long pass from Brunell in the end zone but McCleon was called for his third killer penalty of the game that nullified the turnover and gave the Redskins a first down at the 28-yard line.

A play later McCleon was out with an injury and Brunell found Moss for a 13-yard gain. Two plays later Brunell hit halfback Chris Cooley on 11-yard scoring pass tying the score at 21-21 with: 30 seconds left in the third quarter.

That put the ball into the hands of the Chiefs offense. After sputtering on their first two plays of the initial drive of the fourth quarter, Green found Marc Boerigter for 11 yards on a key third down pass. On the next play, Green hit Holmes on a perfectly executed screen pass that resulted in a 64-yard touchdown. On the play Holmes had guard Will Shields in front of him as he crossed midfield, Superman cut all the way back across the field and tiptoed down the opposite sideline outrunning the Redskins entire defense into the end zone. The Chiefs took a 28-21 lead with 13:16 left to play in the fourth quarter.

Now was the time the defense needed to step up and get the ball back into the hands of their suddenly confident offense. After flushing Brunell from the pocket on first down, Jared Allen has his second sack of the game giving the Redskins a third and seventeen from the 14-yard line.

On the next play Allen did it again sacking Brunell for the third time in the game. That marked a career high for the second year player from Idaho State.

That put the ball back in the hands of Green and company. Facing a critical fourth and inches from their own 42-yard line, Holmes nudged forward eking out a first down to keep the drive alive.

After misfiring on a long pass to Boerigter, the offense sputtered losing a yard on a stuffed running play by Holmes and then Green misfired on a pass to Eddie Kennison. That put the ball back into the hands of Brunell.

Starting at the 14-yard line, the left handed passer went back to work. Using the short passes and the legs of running back Clinton Portis they began to move the ball on the Chiefs defense. After picking up a pair of first downs, Brunell hit Portis for a 23-yard gain that put the ball into Chiefs territory at the 43-yard line.

But the defense stiffened. Facing a third and eight from the 40-yard line linebacker Derrick Johnson put pressure enough pressure on Brunell that he threw an incomplete pass. The Redskins punted the ball away and Kansas City took over at their 20-yard line.

This time Kansas City used their vaulted running game by inserting a fresh legged Larry Johnson into the backfield. He ran consecutive plays picking up a first down before Green hit Tony Gonzalez for an 11-yard gain giving the Chiefs a first down at the 41-yard line.

Facing a critical third down and eight, Redskins cornerback Ade Jimoh was called for a pass interference penalty trying to cover Boerigter. That gave the Chiefs a first down at the Redskins 47-yard line. Two plays later at the two-minute warning Kansas City faced another critical third down and eleven. If they covert, they would seal the victory. But they failed as Green through an errant pass intended for fullback Tony Richardson. Chiefs punter Dustin Colquitt hit a short punt and the defense unsuccessfully went into their prevent defense. The Redskins quickly moved into Chiefs territory. But after spiking the ball to stop the clock then throwing the ball away, Brunell hit wide receiver James Thrash putting the ball at the Chiefs 33-yard line.

After a trio of incomplete passes, the game came down to one final play with the clock stopped at .14 ticks of the clock to tie the game and force overtime. Everyone in the packed Arrowhead house knew Brunell would look for Santana Moss and he nearly pulled off a miraculous play.

With the Redskins premier receiver streaking down the sidelines, after he had beaten Chiefs cornerback DeWayne Washington, veteran safety Sammy Knight tipped the ball as it fell into the end zone after nearly reaching the outstretched hands of Moss.

That final defensive stand sealed the game as Kansas City held on for a hard fought 28-21 win. That moved the Chiefs record to 3-2 on the season as they'll head to Miami next Sunday to face the Dolphins who lost to Tampa Bay 27-13.

WarpaintIllustrated.com Top Stories