KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Trent Green looked and felt just like
new. He was at his best when Kansas City needed him most.
After passing for barely 50 yards in his return from a 10-week
layoff, the two-time Pro Bowl quarterback coolly threw for 50 yards
in one game-winning fourth-quarter drive. Hitting three of five in
the final minutes, Green set up Larry Johnson's 1-yard go-ahead
touchdown run and rallied the sluggish Chiefs past injury-riddled
Trent Green has led the Chiefs to seven straight wins against the Raiders, but the victory margin was seven points or less in all seven. That equals the second-longest such streak in NFL history (that is, consecutive wins by seven points or less vs. one team). The Eagles had an eight-game streak vs. the Redskins (1992-1996).
|2006, Week 11||17-13|
|2005, Week 9||27-23|
|2005, Week 2||23-17|
|2004, Week 16||31-30|
|2004, Week 13||34-27|
|2003 Week 12||27-24|
|2003, Week 7||17-10|
"The majority of games in this league come down to the fourth
quarter, and finding ways to get that done," said Green, who
couldn't even drive the first couple of weeks after suffering a
severe concussion on Sept. 10.
"I just feel proud I was able to contribute to that part of it
and make some throws when we needed."
The Raiders held a 13-10 lead when the Chiefs (6-4) took the
ball on their 20 with 4:53 to play. He hit 3-of-5, including passes
of 10 and 16 yards to Samie Parker and a beauty of a 24-yard gainer
to Eddie Kennison.
Johnson, with 1:32 to play, squeezed into the end zone, capping
a two-touchdown, 159-yard rushing game on his 27th birthday.
"I wouldn't say I had any extra butterflies. I was just so
anxious to get the thing started waking up this morning," said
Green, who was a conservative 9-of-16 for 102 yards. "It's been
hard, especially these last two or three weeks when I felt really
good and felt like I could go out and play."
The Raiders (2-8) also made a quarterback switch, starting Aaron
Brooks over Andrew Walter for the first time since Sept. 17. Brooks
hit Ronald Curry for a 39-yard gain to the Chiefs 8 with 32 seconds
left. But safety Jarrad Page intercepted his next pass intended for
Randy Moss in the end zone.
"That was not a game-saving play," said cornerback Patrick
Surtain. "That was a season-saver."
Oakland's NFL-worst offense had already suffered two key
injuries, losing starting running back Lamont Jordan to a knee
injury in the first quarter and left tackle Robert Gallery to a
dislocated elbow in the third. The Raiders said Jordan had a torn
knee ligament and is likely out for the year. Gallery had a
"That was a very tough loss for us," said Raiders coach Art
Shell. "Hopefully, one day we can get this thing turned around,
and I believe we will."
Brooks was 13-for-22 for 179 yards.
"His effort shows what he is capable of doing," Shell said.
Green's winning drive was also keyed by a gutsy call to go for
it on fourth-and-one from the Kansas City 29. Johnson seemed to get
the first down, but then 15 yards were tacked on because of a face
mask penalty against Oakland lineman Terdell Sands.
|Scouts Inc.'s take ...|
Trent Green returned to the starting lineup for the Chiefs but it was Larry Johnson (right) who stole the show with 154 yards rushing and two touchdowns. It was apparent from the outset that they were just trying to get Green's feet wet. He attempted only 16 passes for the day.
It was a struggle for much of the day for Green, too, but he showed great leadership and poise on K.C.'s late fourth-quarter TD drive, hitting a few key throws. For the Raiders it was another disappointing loss. Veteran QB Aaron Brooks, who returned to the starting lineup, led them inside the 10 on a potential game-winning drive, but in true Brooks-like fashion, he threw an interception to seal the deal for the Chiefs.
"I just looked at the clock and felt at that point it was a gut
feeling," said Chiefs coach Herm Edwards.
The Chiefs took a 7-0 lead on their initial possession, with
Johnson capping a 76-yard, 11-play drive with a 5-yard TD run. But
they ran only eight plays the rest of the first half while the
Raiders dominated time of possession.
Sebastian Janikowski kicked field goals of 41 and 36 yards, and
Oakland took a 13-7 lead with 19 seconds left in the first half
when Brooks hit Courtney Anderson with a 2-yard TD toss.
Lawrence Tynes kicked a 37-yard field goal in the third quarter,
but missed a 35-yarder that could have tied it in the fourth.
Green attempted only four passes in the first half. Until the
final drive, Green spent most of the day handing off to Johnson.
But Green did get roughed up a few times, even taking a good shot
to the upper body by linebacker Thomas Howard.
"I had the scramble where I think everybody kind of health
their breath, or at least I know my family did, and some of the
guys on the sidelines," Green said with a grin.
But the veteran quarterback bounced up every time and seemed
unfazed by anything, not even the absence of several injured
starters, including Pro Bowl left guard Brian Waters and Pro Bowl
tight end Tony Gonzalez.
"Trent has something you really can't teach," said tight end
Jason Dunn. "A person's just got to have it, and he's one of those
people who has it. Leadership. He's a natural born leader."Game notes
Gonzalez missed his first game since 1999 with a shoulder
injury. The Raiders have lost 11 straight to AFC West opponents
since a 25-24 victory at Denver on Nov. 28, 2004. It was the
seventh straight victory for Kansas City over Oakland, all by seven
points or fewer.
- Walt Anderson