Raiders Run Over Chiefs, 23-8

At the onset of the fourth quarter, I ran into a former Chiefs player and we both shook our heads in disbelief at what we had witnessed Sunday. In the end, Oakland defeated the Chiefs 23-8, and it was a terrible football game until Darren McFadden and Michael Bush took the game over in the second half.

What we saw Sunday was a football team that flat ran out of gas, because KC's defense had to be perfect. The unit had some issues of its own, but you can't blame them for the loss. This one was on the quarterbacks and the play calling, which was poorly designed and executed for the second week in a row.

It's one thing to have a rotation of quarterbacks starting with Damon Huard, then wide receiver Marques Hagans, and finally an ineffective Tyler Thigpen. But none of them could move the ball, and after Huard's interception, he was pulled by Head Coach Herm Edwards. However, midway through the fourth quarter, it was announced that Huard had mild head trauma – this injury was not disclosed to the media until the game was nearly over.

Regardless of the reason for the switch, this wasn't a surprise. Edwards said Thigpen would play after Brodie Croyle went down with an injury last week. Fans better get used to it, because Croyle, KC's opening-day starter, might be out for sometime.

Edwards will likely stick with Thigpen now that he's benched Huard. The Chiefs have little choice unless President and General Manager Carl Peterson makes a bold move by acquiring Cleveland Browns backup Brady Quinn, a player Kansas City coveted in last year's draft. But that will take a number one pick, and right now the Chiefs can't really afford to deal those.

I'm not sure if Quinn is the answer, but there isn't any reason to think the Chiefs won't discuss the possibility of making a trade. It makes sense if Huard's injury is serious and Croyle is out for an extended period of time.

This is the dilemma for the Chiefs, who played in front of a less-than-capacity crowd at Arrowhead Stadium Sunday - do you play to win now, or do you panic? I can't see Edwards panicking at all, because now he has to show extraordinary patience, as he's dealing with talent voids that won't be corrected this season.

Besides quarterback, Edwards has a problem at right tackle, wide receiver and linebacker. Those issues will likely linger this season and won't be handled until the offseason.

However, the fact the Raiders have come into Arrowhead and won two years in a row now does not bode well for the rest of the season, or the state of the fanbase. Edwards preaches patience, but he might not have any choice but to shake some things up this week. His losing streak now stands at 11 games, including six losses at Arrowhead. He has to do everything in his power to avoid a loss next week in Atlanta.

Five to Remember

RT Damion McIntosh - Herb Taylor must start at right tackle next week. Derrick Burgess, who's nicked up, beat McIntosh routinely on Sunday, which led to a sputtering Chiefs passing attack. If the Chiefs are going to keep running formations with one tight end, they really don't have a choice but to start Taylor at right tackle next Sunday.

RG Adrian Jones – Nobody on this offensive line is blowing people off the line of scrimmage. The Chiefs designated Jones as their starter at right guard, and because he's struggling with his run blocking, there are no holes. Watching Jones, he doesn't look strong enough to play inside.

RB Larry Johnson - He brought up the ‘trade' word, and after another disappointing Sunday, it wasn't hard to see why. Though Johnson didn't have a tirade after the game, he spoke of his frustrations and his doubts about his future. Unfortunately, he's not going anywhere, and I think he needs to look within. This offense is sputtering, and though it's not all on him, he has to find a way to make some yards on his own.

WR Dwayne Bowe - After a rough week, he caught everything within his reach on Sunday. The problem for Bowe right now is that he's got nobody else opposite him. I would have liked to see the Chiefs go to him more downfield on fly patterns – especially when the Raiders had man-to-man coverage on every snap. That might have opened up a big gain or two. But at least he held onto the ball all game, and his catch late in the fourth quarter was reminiscent of his rookie season.

OC Chan Gailey - Crippled by rotating quarterbacks or not, there were no notable adjustments made by Gailey for the second consecutive Sunday. That's a big concern. What's even more frustrating is on the opposite sideline, the Raiders were creative in establishing their running game by sweeping, pulling and pitching the ball to the outside, putting their backs in a position to stay away from the front seven. This Chiefs offense won't win many games if it continues to run up the middle into a wall of nine defenders.

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