PASSING OFFENSE: B-plus -- Daunte Culpepper was cool and efficient, completing 15 of 22 passes for 170 yards. He didn't come close to an interception. Pass blocking was very good, with Chiefs defensive end Jared Allen kept under control by Barry Sims. Jerry Porter had three catches for 75 yards, including a 35-yarder on Oakland's last touchdown drive. Zach Miller's 28-yard catch was his longest of the year.
"It looked like one of our other plays and I just took it deep, and it worked just like it did in practice," Miller said. "We knew it would be there all week and called it at a perfect time. They were all up on the ball and it turned out pretty awesome."
Ronald Curry had a third-down drop and Culpepper short-hopped a couple of potential completions.
RUSHING OFFENSE: A-minus -- The yardage was good -- 153 yards on 29 carries -- but the way it was achieved was better. Justin Fargas got better each quarter, finishing with 57 yards on six carries in the fourth quarter. LaMont Jordan and Fargas had rushing scores, with Jordan's coming off a halfback pass that he pulled down and ran with. How good was Oakland's line play? Fargas had positive yards on 21 of 22 carries. He gained 139 overall.
"They were throwing it to the outside receiver. Tony stayed in and blocked and I took a chance and jumped it. I just made a play," Huff said. "The first one feels good. That is a lot of weight off my shoulders."
Gonzalez had three catches for 48 yards, all in the second half. Cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha broke up one pass and the Raiders coverage was generally solid if not spectacular. Starting wide receivers Dwayne Bowe and Eddie Kennison combined for six catches for 85 yards.
RUSH DEFENSE: D -- The Raiders continue to be star-makers, with fifth-round draft pick Kolby Smith becoming the eighth different runner to gain 100 yards against them. Smith had 150 yards on 31 carries and Kansas City gained 164 yards on 37 carries overall. Two things in the second half prevented a failing grade. Smith averaged less than 4.0 yards per carry in the second half, and linebacker Kirk Morrison stopped Smith for a yard loss on a fourth-and-one play that essentially wrapped up the game.
Morrison's mind drifted back to his rookie year and his first game at Arrowhead Stadium, when the Chiefs elected to go for the touchdown and the win on one final play from the 1-yard line rather than kick a field goal and send the game into overtime.
The coach was Edwards and not Dick Vermeil, but the Kansas City mindset is the same.
"That image was in my mind," Morrison said. "For them, passing in that situation would be a cop out. That's not their mentality. They want to run the football. I learned that my rookie year and I was too hesitant. This time I was going to attack."
SPECIAL TEAMS: B-minus -- Sebastian Janikowski kicked field goals of 25 and 54 yards and has hit 17 of his last 18 attempts. He also had his first touchback in two weeks. Playing without the injured Isaiah Ekejiuba and Jarrod Cooper, who injured a knee in the first quarter and did not return, coverage units were adequate. An off day for punter Shane Lechler, who had a 31-yard punt, averaged 42.3 yards per punt and 37.7 net, well below his 2007 standards. The Raiders did nothing of note on their returns, although Chris Carr did return a kickoff 27 yards.
COACHING: B-plus -- Lane Kiffin said he looked forward to playing a team for the second time in a season for the first time in his career, and he outcoached counterpart Herm Edwards. The Raiders, getting excellent blocking, opened things up in the third quarter on consecutive 28- and 35-yard pass completions instead of playing it safe. Rob Ryan's gamble to use a goal-line defense at the 23 paid off in a one-yard loss on fourth-and-one for the Chiefs.
Chiefs Report Card:
PASSING OFFENSE: D-plus -- Brodie Croyle, in just his second NFL start, was picked off on his first throw to set up an easy first series Raiders field goal. He completed only three of his first 11 passes and had an awful 8.3 passer rating at halftime, when the Chiefs had only 37 passing yards. He got better in the second half, especially in rolling out to avoid the Raiders rush. He finished with only 12 of 23 passing for 145 yards and no TDs.
RUSHING OFFENSE: B-plus -- Graded on the curve, considering this was against Oakland's next-to-worst rush defense. But Kolby Smith was very impressive on his 31-for-150 debut as an NFL starter. He showed patience in waiting for holes to develop, then made people miss once he got to the next level. His only failure was in getting the game's biggest yard on the fourth-and-one call at the Raiders 23 with 4:26 left.
PASS DEFENSE: C -- Daunte Culpepper attempted only 22 passes, completing 15 for 170 yards and a 91.0 passer rating. Ronald Curry had his usual drops or he would have fared better. The Chiefs sacked him only twice. A real average performance all around.
RUSH DEFENSE: D -- Justin Fargas got 41 of his 139 rushing yards in the final 4 1/2 minutes when he ran for three of Oakland's four first downs and helped the Raiders kill the clock and protect a three-point lead. The Raiders averaged 5.3 yards a carry, and KC's inability to stop them in the four-minute offense was a killer.
SPECIAL TEAMS: D-minus -- Dave Rayner's 33-yard field-goal miss with 10:51 remaining didn't cost the Chiefs the game, but it was huge. Herm Edwards had no confidence in his kicker when he made the decision to gamble on fourth-and-one at the Oakland 23 with 4:26 left. Punter Dustin Colquitt also faltered badly. A 29-yard punt to midfield set up Oakland for an easy field-goal drive. He averaged only 36.7 yards on three punts. Return teams did nothing, as has been the case all year, but coverage teams gave up nothing, either.
COACHING: D -- Edwards burned two timeouts immediately before his fourth-and-one call late in the game. The first one was OK; it was time to gather wits and make the right call. But the decision to challenge the spot from the previous play was nebulous and ended up costing Kansas City a second critical timeout.