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Chiefs report: Strategy and personnel

While setting a record 25 100-yard games, Kansas City Chiefs ...

PLAYER NOTES

--TE Tony Gonzalez, who caught 10 passes for 113 yards with a touchdown against Buffalo, ran his career count of 100-yard games to 25, breaking Kellen Winslow's NFL record for 100-yard games by a tight end. His 35-yard catch in the second quarter was his longest of the season.

--RB Jamaal Charles had a mixed day against the Bills. He caught a 36-yard TD pass from Tyler Thigpen on Kansas City's opening possession for the first touchdown catch of his career. He later lost a fumble at his own 30 to set up a Bills score.

--WR Mark Bradley, who caught a 45-yard TD pass from Tyler Thigpen in the third quarter of the loss to the Bills, left the game with a calf injury that bears watching.

--QB Tyler Thigpen had a career-high three TD passes against Buffalo, but his passer rating of 85.4 was brought down by two interceptions, both by rookie Leodis McKelvin.

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26 Nov 2008 by Ryan Luis

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Chiefs report: Inside slant

Kansas City Chiefs running back Larry Johnson gets past Buffalo ...

Let the rebuilding of the rebuilding team begin.

After believing they'd taken some big steps toward regaining competitiveness in the previous four of their six consecutive losses, the Chiefs took a huge fall backward in their 54-31 home thumping by Buffalo.

It was Kansas City's seventh consecutive loss, and 19th in 20 games dating back to 2007. It is the worst losing stretch in franchise history.

Not only did the 54 points represent the most points ever given up by a Chiefs team, but an offense that had been gaining respectability reverted to old ways in making five turnovers, four of which the Bills converted into 20 points.

The setback was significant for Tyler Thigpen, who had been offering hope that he could become Kansas City's quarterback for the long term with four solid, though winless, starts since his three-interception NFL debut in Week 3 against Atlanta.

But against Buffalo, Thigpen was intercepted twice by rookie Leodis McKelvin, who returned the first for the 64-yard, second-quarter touchdown that turned a tight game around, giving the Bills a 20-14 lead they wouldn't lose.

McKelvin's second pick with 1:20 left before halftime set up a 53-yard hurry-up TD march that made it a 30-17 game at intermission. And when Thigpen fumbled after slipping untouched on a run to his own 32 in the third quarter, the Bills had an easy drive for one of four Rian Lindell field goals and a 40-17 lead.

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26 Nov 2008 by Ryan Luis

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CBS Sportsline: Chiefs report: Notes, quotes

Buffalo Bills wide receiver Josh Reed (82) is brought down by ...
Turnovers plagued the Chiefs, but a rare plethora of penalties -- nine, for 75 yards -- also did in a team that entered the game as one of the league's least-penalized teams.

Coupled with some special teams breakdowns -- a squib kick Buffalo covered at its 39, a 46-yard McKelvin kickoff return aided by a major facemask foul, a 38-yard punt from the Kansas City 1 following a bobbled kickoff return, a 33-yard punt from the 11 -- meant the Bills didn't have to drive far for several of their nine offensive scores. Their 10th came on defense.

The Bills moved only 7 yards twice for field goals. They had touchdown drives of 33 and 44 yards and two of 53. Their average drive start for the game was at their own 48.

--Buffalo scored on eight of their first nine possessions, and nine of 11.

--It got so one-sided at 47-24 that some observers thought Buffalo was piling on by throwing the ball on two of the three plays in a 44-yard touchdown drive that made it 54-27 with 9:18 left.

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26 Nov 2008 by Ryan Luis

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Through 660 Minutes of Football, Chiefs Defense Has Mustered Just Six Sacks

Buffalo Bills running back Marshawn Lynch reaches the football ...
Through 12 weeks of horrific football, I think it's well established that the Chiefs aren't very good. There have been bright spots, however. Like beating the Broncos, Tony Gonzalez's touchdown record, and Tyler Thigpen. Beyond that, though, there really isn't much to get excited about.

Of all the things that need fixing -- and the list is extensive -- the complete absence of a pass rush is pretty high up there. The indispensable Joe Posnanski writes about the utter ineptitude, and it's pretty harrowing, even for a club currently staring at 1-10.
There's a reason for this, a good reason, and it is simply this: The Chiefs have the worst pass rush in the history of professional football. I am not saying this to be flip, and I don't mean this in the exaggerated way that you might say, "This is the worst traffic jam I've ever seen," every Monday when taking I-35 North. No, these Chiefs are quantifiably the worst pass-rushing team ever. They have six sacks this year. That's six sacks. The whole team. The whole year. Six sacks.
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26 Nov 2008 by Ryan Luis

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NFL Preview - Kansas City (1-10) at Oakland (3-8)

The Oakland Raiders are searching for a measure of consistency. The Kansas City Chiefs, who will visit the Silver and Black at the Coliseum on Sunday afternoon, are simply seeking a win.

The Raiders will be trying to build on one of the shocking results of Week 12, a 31-10 road victory over the first-place Denver Broncos last Sunday.

Oakland was able to snap a four-game winning streak by playing a rare bit of solid offensive football, with running backs Justin Fargas (24 carries, 107 yards) and Darren McFadden (38 rushing yards, 2 TD) fueling the run game and quarterback JaMarcus Russell (10-of-11, 152 yards, 1 TD) offering up the most efficient outing of his young career.

On defense, the Raiders held Jay Cutler (16-of-37 passing, 204 yards, 1 INT) and the prolific Broncos passing game firmly in check, and the special teams made its presence felt when return man Johnnie Lee Higgins contributed his second punt return for a touchdown in as many weeks.

With a win on Sunday, Oakland will have matched its 2007 win total with win number four, a modest but noteworthy achievement for an organization that has experienced well-chronicled struggles since reaching the Super Bowl following the 2002 season.

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26 Nov 2008 by Ryan Luis

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Edwards has four TDs, guides Bills to historic drubbing of Chiefs

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Tyler Thigpen (4) is sacked by ...
Needing only to eke out a win, the Buffalo Bills wound up smashing a record.

A mistake-free Trent Edwards threw for two touchdowns and ran for two more and the Bills romped past Kansas City 54-31 Sunday, breaking a four-game losing streak while scoring more points than anyone ever scored before against the Chiefs.

Snapping smartly out of a demoralizing slump that threatened to waste a 5-1 start, the Bills came within four points of matching their 42-year-old record for points in a game.

The Chiefs (1-10) had five turnovers while losing for the 19th time in 20 games, by far the worst stretch in franchise history.

"It's embarrassing," said Chiefs linebacker Derrick Johnson.

The Bills (6-5) scored 20 points off turnovers.

"They worked hard, obviously, preparing for this game, and they got a lot of bounces," Bills coach Dick Jauron said. "They made a lot of plays."

Edwards became the first Bills quarterback since Jack Kemp to run for two TDs in a game. He looked nothing at all like the guy who in his 13 previous quarters had thrown eight interceptions while losing two fumbles and managing only three touchdown passes.

"I always try to be confident," said Edwards. "Even when I'm not, I try to act like I am. That's the position you have to be in."

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23 Nov 2008 by Ryan Luis

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Rochester native Branden Albert faces familiar foe as Kansas City Chiefs host Buffalo Bills

Branden Albert grew up in Rochester surrounded by Bills fans, but he'll be helping the Kansas City Chiefs try to beat the Bills on Sunday.

Growing up in Rochester, Branden Albert became quite familiar with the Buffalo Bills.

He had no choice.

Surrounded by Bills fans everywhere he went, Albert learned more than he cared to about the legacy of Jim Kelly, Thurman Thomas and Bruce Smith from friends and relatives who couldn't understand why he rooted for the Dallas Cowboys.

"I couldn't help but become acquainted with their history, living in western New York,'' he said. "Their games were on television all the time, and that's all most people talked about.''

These days, the 24-year-old Albert has a new favorite team the Kansas City Chiefs. And even the most diehard Bills fans will understand why he switched allegiances and why he'll be rooting against Buffalo Sunday afternoon at Arrowhead Stadium. See, Albert now draws hefty paychecks from Kansas City to play left offensive tackle, so the former East High basketball player will be doing his darndest to open holes, protect his quarterback and ensure that the Chiefs, not the Bills, end their miserable slide.

"I know a lot of people back home will be watching because it's a Bills game," Albert said in a phone interview after practice the other day. "You just tell them that I'm doing my best to represent Rochester well in the NFL."

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22 Nov 2008 by Ryan Luis

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Spread changes options for Chiefs

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Tyler Thigpen (4) drops backs ...

For a 1-9 team, the Kansas City Chiefs sure have found a way to keep things interesting. First, tight end Tony Gonzalez demanded a trade in October. Then running back Larry Johnson fell into so much trouble off the field that he might not even be on the team next season. Now the Chiefs are offering us another compelling story line: They're openly talking about the spread offense possibly being the system they use in years to come.

At least that was the vibe coming from coach Herm Edwards when he recently spoke about his improved offense and the surprising play of second-year quarterback Tyler Thigpen. Edwards, who has long had a reputation for favoring more conservative, run-oriented offenses, has been seeing his team gain confidence with every game it plays in that wide-open system. He has watched Thigpen grow from an unknown, third-string quarterback into a player who could be the Chiefs' permanent starter if he continues to mature.

The coach also has seen his team develop the kind of faith that it desperately needs at this point in an ugly season.It would be easy for the Chiefs to pack it in and prepare for the offseason with their current record. Instead, the spread offense -- a system that has allowed them to nearly pull off upset wins over the New York Jets, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and San Diego Chargers prior to last week's 30-20 loss to the New Orleans Saints -- has convinced a young, rebuilding team that it can compete with Thigpen under center. Remember, the Chiefs have averaged 22.5 points in their past four games after averaging only 12.5 in their first six.

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21 Nov 2008 by Ryan Luis

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