From Cleveland Stadium
The C hiefs are 2-0 for the first time since 2005 after their victory over the Cleveland Browns on Sunday afternoon, 16-14.
In the four years since then, they were 0-2, 0-2, 0-2 and 0-2.Last year, they did not win their second game until November 15 when they beat the Raiders in Oakland.
Brandon Flowers doesn’t want to hear it. He says it’s time to forget those poor starts in the previous half-decade.
“What happened five years ago or last year doesn’t have anything to do with what we are getting done,” said Flowers, who had the Chiefs only touchdown with a pick six on a first-half interception of Browns backup quarterback, Seneca Wallace.
What this game brought to the plate was a team that has improved on defense and special teams. It was visible in the victory over the Browns. They had an edge in offensive yards (312 to 299), despite giving the ball up three times they were 0 in the turnover ratio. They were even on sacks, the Chiefs had a 16-13 edge on first downs and they had half the penalties of the Browns (4-30 yards vs. 9-78 yards.)
“What’s becoming evident with these guys is they are understanding so much more of what this is about,” Haley said. “Right now what I know about this team our margin of error is not going t be great. They haven’t won a lot of games. We are in the process of trying to become a good team.”
This was not an especially well played game, as the Chiefs did not have an offensive touchdown. The defense scored the TD and then Ryan Succop added three field goals, including one from yards that won the game. The Chiefs did have 312 yards
But it was the defense that led this victory.
“They are making progress with new guys into the mix,” Haley said. “To beat this team we had to stop the run, that’s what we were able to do.”
They gave up a long bomb by QB Seneca Wallace to WR Joshua Cribbs for a 65-yard touchdown. But they were held to 299 yards and the Chiefs defense produced a touchdown when Flowers returned an interception 33 yards for a touchdown. Last year, the Browns ran for 351 yards against the Chiefs defense. Today, they ran for just 73 yards.
The first quarter was a punt-fest between Cleveland’s Reggie Hodges and Dustin Colquitt of the Chiefs. The only score of the period was set up by the Chiefs defense. OLB Mike Vrabel shot off the edge and tackled Harrison in the backfield for a loss of three yards. Somewhere in the process of the play, Harrison lost control of the ball and it was recovered by DE Glenn Dorsey. Cleveland challenged the ruling on the field, because the fumble seemed to come after Harrison hit the ground. The field officials didn’t see it that way and the call was upheld.
The Chiefs got six yards on first down with a Cassel scramble. Two incomplete passes forced a 35-yard field goal from Ryan Succop and the Chiefs had a 3-0 lead.
The second quarter featured plenty of action as the Browns scored a pair of touchdowns and the Chiefs had one of their own. It started with a one-yard TD run by RB Peyton Hillis. Big plays in the drive were a pair of Wallace throws, finding Harrison for 23 yards and then TE Ben Watson for 44 yards. Dawson’s PAT made it 7-3 Browns.
The Chiefs offense went three and out with just nine yards gained. After Colquitt’s punt, the Cleveland offense picked up two yards on first down. Facing a 2nd-and-8 play, Wallace threw to WR Chansi Stuckey on an out patter to the right. CB Brandon Flowers timed the play perfectly, jumped in front of the throw and returned it 33 yards for a pick six. It was the second interception return for a TD in Flowers career; his first came in 2008 against the New York Jets.
Succop’s PAT kick gave the Chiefs a 10-7 lead. That did not last long. On the Browns third offensive play, Wallace connecting deep middle for a 65-yard touchdown pass to WR Joshua Cribbs. He got behind the coverage from CB Brandon Carr and ran untouched into the end zone. Dawson’s PAT gave Cleveland a 14-10 lead.
By the end of the half, Cassel had thrown a pair of interceptions. His long ball to WR Chris Chambers was picked off by CB Sheldon Brown, and then another pass to Chambers was tipped at the line of scrimmage and intercepted by Ahtyba Rubin. On the second interception, the Browns tried a 42-yard FG, but Dawson was wide left.
The half ended at 14-10.
The Chiefs took the opening kickoff of the second half and drove down in Cleveland territory. They couldn’t punch in the end zone and Succop kicked a 26-yard FG that sliced the Browns lead to a single point. The rest of the quarter was pretty quiet.
Then in the fourth quarter, the Chiefs drove 63 yards in 14 plays and Succop nailed a 23â€“yard field goal and the Chiefs had a 16-14 lead. They finished things up by going for a first down on 4th-and-1 at the Cleveland 36-yard line. Thomas Jones went over the right side of the offensive line and got the first down