Week 9 Matchup: Chiefs (4-3) at Rams (4-3)

The Chiefs finally jumped over .500 last weekend with a 35-28 win over the banged up Seattle Seahawks. The Chiefs dominated the Seahawks on the stat sheet but kept giving Seattle chances to win the game. When the Chiefs had to, they came up big, including another game-winning drive by backup quarterback Damon Huard.

The win gives the Chiefs a two-game winning streak and momentum going into St. Louis this Sunday, but can Kansas City continue to win on the road?

Series History:

The Chiefs own a 4-4 all-time record against the Rams, including a 3-0 mark since they moved to St. Louis. The last regular season meeting between these two teams came in 2002 when the Chiefs destroyed St. Louis, 49-10, at Arrowhead. The last game in St. Louis between the two teams was in 1997, when the Chiefs won 28-20.


Kansas City -

The Chiefs are now ranked ninth in total defense (294.7). They moved up to 17th in rush defense (112.7) and an impressive seventh against the pass (182). They are giving up 21.7 points a game (20th in the NFL), identical to KC's offensive output.

The Chiefs put up 499 yards last week, moving up to 15th in total offense (323.7). Kansas City is both 14th in rushing (112.1) and passing (211.6). The Chiefs are tied for second in the NFL with a 63.6 red-zone touchdown percentage, and tied for sixth in the NFL with 113 red-zone points.

St. Louis -

St. Louis is ranked 27th in the NFL in total defense (350.7), 27th against the run (134.9), and 25th against the pass (215.9). They rank 23rd in points allowed at 23.7 per game. The Rams are 30th in third-down defense, allowing teams to convert 47 percent of the time.

The Rams are eighth in total offense (354.7) 21st in rushing offense (98.6) and fourth in passing (256.1). They average 23.3 points per game, good for eighth in the league.


When the Chiefs run: St. Louis has struggled defensively lately, and it won't get any easier against a red-hot Kansas City offense. With the run blocking getting on track, Larry Johnson has looked like his old self the past two weeks, running for 132 yards against San Diego and 155 against Seattle with a total of six touchdowns. St. Louis is 27th against the run and gave up a whopping 186 yards to LaDainian Tomlinson last weekend.


When the Chiefs pass: One of the reasons Kansas City has scored a total of 65 points the past two weeks is because of better pass protection. The offensive line has allowed quarterback Damon Huard to rip apart defenses, finally getting Pro-Bowl tight end Tony Gonzalez involved. If the Chiefs can get Gonzalez going early and give Huard enough time to get the ball downfield, the Rams should have a hard time stopping a Chiefs offense that is on fire right now


When the Rams run: Running back Steven Jackson has been effective so far this season, but the Rams are still considered a passing team. The Chiefs have been solid against the run at home this season, but not on the road, so this should be an interesting matchup.


When the Rams pass: The Rams are still one of the best passing teams in the NFL, and quarterback Marc Bulger is playing at a Pro-Bowl level. It will be hard for the Chiefs to contain wide receivers Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce, but they must not allow them to get behind the defense and produce big plays. Kansas City's pass rush is usually hot and cold. If they can get some pressure on Bulger, they might be able to contain those big plays Holt and Bruce are famous for.


The Facts:

• Dating back to 2003, 31 out of the 36 playoff teams have been 5-3 or better after eight games. The 2005 Patriots (4-4) were the only team in the past three years to make the playoffs without having a winning record midway through the season.

• St. Louis is just 5-6 at home since the start of the 2005 season, but the Rams are an impressive 26-2 since 1999 when scoring 30 or more points at home.

• The Chiefs have averaged 32 points a game in their four wins this season.

• The Rams are 39-1 when producing a 100-yard rusher dating back to 1996. St. Louis only has three rushing touchdowns this season, and KC has not allowed a rushing touchdown in their four wins this season.

• St. Louis is 3-8 dating back to last season when allowing a 100-yard rusher. Last week, Chargers running back LaDainian Tomlinson racked up 183 yards in their 38-24 loss.

• KC's defense hasn't permitted a 300-yard passer or 100-yard receiver in 10 straight games. The Rams are 10-1 against AFC teams when wide receiver Torry Holt goes over 100 yards and are 16-9 at home when Holt tops the 100-yard mark.

• Kansas City's defense has permitted 15 offensive touchdowns. Five of those drives started in Chiefs' territory, and only two consumed 80 yards or more.

Injury Report:

Kansas City -

QB Trent Green (head) – OUT

RT Kevin Sampson (knee) – QUESTIONABLE

CB Benny Sapp (knee) – QUESTIONABLE

LB Rich Scanlon (knee) – QUESTIONABLE S

t. Louis -

LB Pisa Tinoisamoa (hand) - QUESTIONABLE

TE Aaron Walker (illness) - PROBABLE

Weather Report:




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