It's probably safe to say there have been many humbling experiences for the Kansas City Chiefs this season, as tends to happen to a 2-13 team. They can salvage some pride by preventing the hated Denver Broncos from claiming the top seed in the AFC when the two teams close their regular seasons against each other on Sunday.
For the Chiefs, a loss ensures the top pick in April's NFL Draft. Following last week's 20-13 loss to the Indianapolis Colts, many players openly expressed their frustration. Perhaps that frustration will be used as motivation against the Broncos this weekend, as Reid Ferrin of KCChiefs.com writes.
Rookie offensive lineman Donald Stephenson, in particular, is looking to bounce back after a game against the Colts' Dwight Freeney that saw Stephenson commit three penalties and give up tons of pressure, including a sack by Freeney. Stephenson looks to move on and improve:
"I played probably my worst game, with the penalties and miscues I had. It's unacceptable, especially if I want to be as good as I'm trying to be. I learned a lot today, went against a (potential) Hall of Famer Dwight Freeney, so I'm going to take everything from that and build on it."
Of course, Freeney is now slouch. Stephenson hopes to move on:
"He does everything well. He's one of those guys who is tough to block. You can watch as much film as you want, do all those things, but it's still Dwight Freeney and he's going to make some plays. Some of those things, I could have made better or could have fixed, (but) some of those things, that's just natural ability, so I'm going to look at the film and learn from it."
Lessons learned by promising rookies are the little things the Chiefs can take from a season like this, and turning those lessons into victories against marquee opponents can start as soon as Sunday.