Arrowheadlines: Chiefs News 12/20

Good morning! It's Raiders Week and it means something. We have a big day of Kansas City Chiefs news for you. It includes reflections on Sunday's win and previews of Saturday's match-up as well. Enjoy!

Romeo Crennel's first achievement as Kansas City's head coach was inspiring. He guided the previously downtrodden Chiefs past the previously undefeated Packers. His next feat will have to be equally impressive. Crennel this week has to find a way to get the Chiefs to play with the same energy and emotion as they did against Green Bay. The 6-8 Chiefs will try to keep their playoff hopes alive Saturday when they play the 7-7 Raiders at Arrowhead Stadium.

Crennel Has To Keep Chiefs' Energy Up For Raiders from KC Star

Just over a week ago the Chiefs suffered through an embarrassing loss, followed by a seismic shift in the organization's leadership structure. This week, the Chiefs are one of football's most discussed storylines.

That's been Kansas City's inconsistent season in a nutshell.

"This all feels great, but we have to move on and put this victory behind us," FB Le'Ron McClain said. "We've had an up and down season coming out of big games."

Finding Consistency Has Been A Chief Challenge For Kansas City from The Mothership

There was so much to like that it's natural to wonder why the Chiefs don't just go ahead and hire Crennel on a permanent basis right now. That's not going to happen for at least a couple of reasons.

Go Slow With Romeo from The Red Zone

Q: Do you plan to make a big deal out of ‘Raider week' with your players?

CRENNEL: "Well yes, it is a big week, and it's a big deal because it's a division game. And generally all division games are good rivalries because you definitely want to win them. And we definitely want to win this game so that we can stay in the hunt and stay in the race. And so it is a big week. We went out there and we played them good out there but what I'm going to remind them of is last year this Raider team came in here and they whipped us pretty good and so I feel like they will feel like they can come in here and do the same thing again.

Q&A With Romeo Crennel 12/19 from The Mothership

In their final appearance of the 2011 season, the Chiefs Rookie Club donned Santa hats and got ready for the upcoming holidays by visiting with some very special youth at The Children's Place. Together, the rookies distributed gifts, including plush animals and footballs, to approximately 50 children. Then, they answered questions and partook in sing-a-longs at the center.

Chiefs Rookie Club Plays Santa At The Children's Place from The Mothership

Biggest area to fix: The Chiefs actually could have won this game by 20 points. The Chiefs had to settle for four field goals and they were just 1-for-5 in the red zone. It didn't burn Kansas City on Sunday, but more production is needed in that area.

Kansas City Chiefs: Moving On from ESPN

Clark Hunt and Scott Pioli were on center stage last Monday, answering questions related to the firing of coach Todd Haley. The Kansas City Chiefs were a team in turmoil, and the owner and general manager were searching for answers.

They may have found at least one in Romeo Crennel.

Exactly one week later, the Chiefs' interim coach stepped to a podium inside the same interview room and couldn't help but smile.

What A Difference A Week Makes: Chiefs Go From Firing Coach To Playing For Playoffs from The Associated Press via The Washington Post

Before November turned to December, the Raiders were reveling in controlling their own destiny and perhaps silently pondering the possibility of wrapping up a playoff berth by Christmas Eve.

Three losses later comes a potentially ugly reality.

If the Raiders lose to the Kansas City Chiefs on Saturday at Arrowhead Stadium, and that result is coupled with a win by either the New York Jets or Cincinnati Bengals, it's over.

No AFC West title, no chance at a wild card, and it would all be wrapped up by the afternoon slate of games.

Oakland Raiders Notebook: Once Bright Playoffs Hopes Are Now In Trouble from The San Jose Mercury News

Mike, it looks like it will go down to the wire in the AFC West. Do the Broncos have the tiebreaker against San Diego and Oakland if they beat Buffalo and lose to KC, or if they lose to Buffalo and beat KC? I know just win the last two and they're in but I'm wondering about the other scenario.

---Dave, Irvine, Calif.

Tiebreaker wise, the Broncos have them all, if they beat -- gulp! -- Kyle Orton and the Kansas City Chiefs in the final game of the season Jan. 1. Beat the Chiefs and they're in.

Broncos Mailbag: With Tim Tebow, Can Denver Win The AFC West? from The Denver Post

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney isn't giving up yet on a House vote expected late tonight over payroll taxes.

"I was told that it was impossible for the Kansas City Chiefs to beat the Green Bay Packers," said Mr. Carney, alluding to the Chiefs' upset victory Sunday.

White House Girds For Late-Night Vote On Taxes from The Wall Street Journal

"There's a lot of teams that would have a strong interest. ... But if you're Jeff Fisher, and you're looking at Miami and Kansas City, most coaches would want to go to Kansas City. You've got a Pro Bowl quarterback in Matt Cassel and (Pro Bowl) running back Jamaal Charles.''

Yet Kansas City's inspired effort under interim coach Romeo Crennel in knocking off the previously unbeaten Green Bay Packers likely enhanced Crennel's chances to become the permanent head coach considering his and general manager Scott Pioli's successful tenure together in New England.

Inside Slant: Credit Phillips For Texans' Turnaround from USA Today

Here we go again.

A new calendar year is likely to procure an old and familiar refrain for the San Diego Chargers, the NFL's walking definition of instability. When January comes around in a couple of weeks, the always-unpredictable team will either be basking in exhilaration from the high created by another AFC West title delivered by an out-of-nowhere closing kick, or left with the sinking low that one more season of what could have been invariably creates.

Could Another Late Charge Be Coming In AFC West? From FOX News

Player of the Game

When you scout the Kansas City Chiefs' defense, the first thing you do is circle OLB Tamba Hali. Coming in tied for ninth in the NFL with nine sacks, the Packers decided to run their normal offense and take their chances with LT Marshall Newhouse. In the first half, Newhouse had a few blips, although the sack and fumble Hali had on QB Aaron Rodgers wasn't his fault. But in the second half, Hali started wearing Newhouse down and with the late-snap movement of the defensive line causing some problems, Hali dominated.

Packers Replay from The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

On Christmas Day in 1971, the Kansas City Chiefs hosted the Miami Dolphins in the AFC Divisional Game which the Dolphins won, 27-24, in double overtime after 82 minutes and 40 seconds of play. Four decades later, that game remains the longest NFL game ever played.

On the 40th anniversary to the day, NFL Network presents a one-hour NFL Films-produced special on the game, "The Longest Game Ever", Sunday, Dec. 25 at 6 p.m. ET on NFL Network.

'The Longest Game Ever' Airs Christmas On NFL Network from NFL.com

Crennel used The Gladiator to help get his team ready for this game. He'd seen it last weekend in the hotel, before the Chiefs played the Jets, and he took some Russell Crowe into the Saturday night team meeting with him. "I told the team that, like the gladiator, we were going to play a great team in Green Bay, and no matter what comes out of these gates, we've got to stay together,'' Crennel said. "We did that. I told them after the game, 'Everyone expected us to die with honor today. But we're not ready to die.' ''

Monday Morning QB from Sports Illustrated

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