The Kansas City Chiefs did a lot of things right on Sunday against the Buffalo Bills. They didn't make a ton of mistakes, played tough defense and ran the ball incredibly well once again. They also made some mistakes which is a little unusual for them. The Chiefs had a few breakdowns along the way and, for once this season, it seemed that all the bounces didn't go their way.
Yet they still pulled it out against Buffalo.
The Chiefs are the first team since 1975 that rushed for that many yards and not come up with a rushing touchdown out of the deal. KC ended with a whopping 274 yards rushing marking the third consecutive game they've gone over 200 yards rushing (first time that's been done in KC since '78). Jamaal Charles had 177 rushing yards and Thomas Jones, who told us in the locker room after the game that he watches Charles "like a fan" sometimes, ended with 77 yards. Charles also had another 61 yards receiving putting his total at nearly 240 yards -- without a touchdown.
The Chiefs and their fans know they got away with one against Buffalo. It should have been over before Eric Berry got an interception. It should have been over before Todd Haley called that timeout icing the kicker. There were multiple points in the game where the Chiefs either got lucky (that was definitely part of it), made a huge play (like Mr. Berry) or let Buffalo make their own mistakes (like the missed field goal).
We talked to several players in the locker room after the game wondering if they've ever been part of a game like this. Brian Waters compared it to the Chiefs/Browns game with the helmet throwing a few years ago. Thomas Jones says he lost an OT game to Buffalo last year while playing for the Jets. Eric Berry called his first OT game "crazy". Other guys say it was one of the wackier games they've been part of but a win is a win.
I watched this game from the Chiefs press box and it was amusing at times watching the reactions of folks up there. On one play you heard: 'This team...just like 2009. They're not going anywhere.' And then the Chiefs get the ball back and drive in field goal range and you hear: 'The resiliency on this team is what excites me the most.'
Me? I'm just happy to see the win. I think it's important to figure out what we would be saying if the Chiefs had lost. Clearly the Chiefs could have and, in some ways, should have lost this game. Just because they hit a 35-yard field goal and Buffalo missed theirs doesn't erase the problems we saw earlier. The Chiefs again let the opponent come back in crunch time. They did it against Houston and then against the Jaguars they flashed a killer instinct closing Jacksonville out.
This is a flawed team. There's no doubt about that. They can't let Buffalo come back on them like that. They have to find what they did against Jacksonville and regain that killer instinct.
With each passing week I see the Chiefs getting closer and closer to the playoffs. This is a team that's built for the playoffs -- run the ball, stop the run and don't turn it over -- so I'm very anxious to see if they can close this thing off.
The next step is a big one: a divisional road matchup against second place Oakland.