Chiefs Surge Past Seahawks

Joseph Addai of the Indianapolis Colts runs in a touchdown to take the lead late in the fourth quarter over the New England Patriots during the AFC Championship Game on January 21, 2007 at the RCA Dome in Indianapolis. The Colts came back from 18 points down in the second quarter for a wildly entertaining 38-34 victory. Getty Images/Andy Lyons

Elvis Grbac is looking like a new man and not just because he hasn't shaved since the Kansas City Chiefs started winning.

This Grbac stays cool under pressure, throws accurate passes into tight coverage and leaves the field to cheers instead of the boos that used to rain down from Arrowhead Stadium.

"I think he's the same guy," center Tim Grunhard said after Grbac threw for 256 yards and two touchdowns in Monday night's 24-17 win over the Seattle Seahawks. "But I think now he thinks he's capable of making every throw. To have him do that consistently just gives him confidence and gives us confidence in him also."

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Game Summary

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  • It's all a matter of experience, Grbac said.

    "It's being here for four years and going through tough times," he said. "Now I have an opportunity to really understand my abilities and the offense's ability. I knew that sometimes I would get the big play and sometimes I really had to dump it off. I had to be patient more than anything else."

    Grbac displayed both patience and confidence on the drives that led to his TD passes.

    After Seattle (2-3) went up 7-0 late in the first quarter on Jon Kitna's 1-yard pass to Itula Mili, Grbac went 5-for-5 for 69 yards on the Chiefs' first possession of the second, capped by his game-tying 15-yard pass to tight end Tony Gonzalez.

    Then, in the third quarter, Kansas City (3-2) trailed 17-7 and found itself pinned at its own 5 after Jef Feagles' pooch punt.

    Grbac went to work again, hitting Derrick Alexander on the first play of the drive for a 73-yard gain and finding him again two plays later for a 17-yard touchdown that made it 17-14.

    On the 73-yard play, Grbac threw the ball just over linebacker George Koonce's head, and Alexander made a leaping grab in front of Springs. Then he managed to hold on when he bounced off safety Jay Bellamy in the end zone.

    "Elvis made a great throw," said Alexander, who finished with 153 yards on five receptions. "It was right over the guy's head, and I was able to go up and make the play. I don't know how I caught it, but it just kind of stuck to my hands."

    After that, Seattle wasn't able to regain any momentum. Pete Stoyanovich, who missed a 37-yard field goal on the Chiefs' first possession, tied it at 17 with a 27-yarder early in the fourth quarter.

    Mike Cloud's 15-yard run put Kansas City ahead 24-17 with 4:26 remaining after a Seattle drive ended with the Chiefs' successful instant-replay appeal.

    Officials at first ruled that tight end Christian Fauria made a 2-yard catch for a first down at the Seattle 33, but the play was overturned when referee Ed Hochuli viewed the replay and said the ball hit the ground.

    "I thought he caught it, but I was worried about getting the first down," Seattle coach Mike Holmgren said. "I didn't know if he had enough for the first down. I though he caught it, but if you're a really good football team, you make your own breaks."

    Jerome Woods' interception at the Chiefs 11 ended the Seahawks' last drive with 21 seconds left. It was the second of two takeaways by the Kansas City defense, which also sacked Kitna six times including a career-high three sacks by defensive end Eric Hicks.

    Seattle took a 17-7 lead on Shawn Alexander's 7-yard run late in the first half and Rian Lindell's 27-yard field goal midway through the third quarter.

    "We played pretty good football," Koonce said. "The offense controlled the clock. We couldn't have asked for a better first half than we had."

    The Chiefs failed in their attempt to set an "on-site" NFL attendance record when only 4,391 showed up in adjacent Kauffman Stadium to watch the game on the giant video board. Combined with the sellout crowd of 78,502, the total attendance of 82,893 fell almost 8,000 short.

    Notes

  • Gonzalez's catch in the second quarter gave him at least one reception in 3straight games.
  • Hicks has more sacks than he had all of last year.
  • It was the Chiefs' first Monday night home game in almost two years since the "Monday Night Meltdown" when the Chiefs drew six unsportsmanlike conduct penalties in Denver's final TD drive.
  • Alexander has 16 100-yard receiving games in his career.
  • The Seahawks had beaten the Chiefs three straight times and were foiled in their effort to make it four straight for the first time in team history.


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