Wow! What an exciting game. Too exciting (another year or two off my lifespan). As you can imagine, there are a lot of stories from last night's game. Keep reading for some great Kansas City Chiefs news. Go Chiefs!
Much as their season appeared dead just a month ago after their 0-3 start, the Chiefs' hopes for climbing back into the AFC West race looked ready to expire in the final moments of regulation Monday night against the Chargers.
That they lived to tell about a 23-20 overtime victory at Arrowhead Stadium speaks to one of the most exciting finishes in Chiefs history.
Thriller Night: Chiefs Beat Chargers In Overtime from KC Star
The Chiefs beat the Chargers 23-20 in overtime at Arrowhead Stadium on Monday night, completing a logic-defying march from NFL laughingstock to first place in the AFC West in Arrowhead's first shining moment of the season.
"Nights like this," Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli said before the game, "this is why I came here."
You've never seen this. Nobody has. The Chiefs are the first team in league history to go from 0-3 to first place four games later.
Arrowhead Comes Alive When The Sun Goes Down from KC Star
KC Star Photo Gallery: Chiefs 23, Chargers 20 OT | Oct. 31, 2011
KC Star Photo Gallery: Chiefs Fans Tailgate On Halloween At Arrowhead
NFL.com Video: Chargers vs. Chiefs Highlights
NFL.com Video: Johnson On Chiefs Big Win
NFL.com Video: Chiefs Postgame Press Conference
Never mind that it was Halloween night in Arrowhead Stadium. Every day, every night, every waking minute is Halloween for the Bolts, who could have used a disguise Monday night instead of arriving as themselves (whatever the hell they are). Strange things happen to them and nearly every one isn't good.
Maybe it's because, well, they're just not smart. And it's mighty hard to be good in the NFL if you're playing dumb. They have not played well; have not played intelligently, for great periods of time in any game this season.
Lousy Game, Lousy Outcome By Lousy Team On Lousy Night from The San Diego Union-Tribune
Until Monday night, Baldwin was best known for missing most of training camp and the first five games of the regular season after suffering a broken thumb in a fight with running back Thomas Jones.
But Baldwin had his coming-out party on the national stage of "Monday Night Football."
Chiefs Rookie Baldwin Scores TD In Home Debut from KC Star
In a classic back-and-forth battle on Monday Night Football, the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the San Diego Chargers, 23-20, in overtime on a 30-yard field goal by
Chiefs Defeat Chargers 23-20 In Overtime On Monday Night Football from The Mothership
Freaky things happen on Halloween.
For the second straight year, Arrowhead Stadium celebrated Halloween with an overtime victory. The win came from a field goal, off the foot of the same kicker and kicked in the same direction as last year's 13-10 win vs. Buffalo.
But this year's version of Halloween victory went much further than a set of similarities. Kansas City's 23-20 Monday Night Football win over San Diego proved beyond unbelievable.
MNF Morning After: San Diego from The Mothership
Eight days ago, fullback Le'Ron McClain scored the Chiefs' first rushing touchdown - in his team's sixth regular-season game. The Chiefs' second score came from Javier Arenas, a cornerback. As much of a relief as it was Monday night for Battle to score in the fourth quarter, giving his team an eight-point lead, it was perhaps more valuable that, in a two-play burst, Battle alleviated fears that the Chiefs might have to endure the rest of this season without a reliable running game.
Battle's Running Gives Chiefs A Boost from KC Star
Tamba Hali's impact on the game: "Tamba is...it's hard to put into words how much energy and effort he expends, on a fulltime basis, every snap. There isn't one snap where you ever see him take a play off. People talk about motor, but this guy lives it from start to finish of every game, every practice. I'm so happy to be a part of a team [with him]. He is a true difference maker out there, but at the same time, there were a lot of guys out there. That was a physical hard-fought game like I said. Guys were fighting through, getting beat up, coming out and going back in...
Todd Haley's Postgame Comments - 10/31 from The Mothership
Do you have any sympathy for Philip Rivers when he lost the snap? "I think Philip Rivers is an outstanding quarterback. He has proven that year-in and year-out in this league. He is a heck of a competitor. Tonight he threw for over 300 yards and did all the things you can do, but sometimes in football it comes down to one play and, fortunately for us, it worked out in our favor."
Matt Cassel Postgame Comments - 10/31 from The Mothership
LB ANDY STUDEBAKER
On his fumble recovery: "You just grab the ball and hold on for dear life and one of my teammates pulled me off the pile once he saw I had it secured and there it is ... We were saying in the huddle, no matter how much time is left, you don't quit just because it looks ugly. If you quit when things look ugly you miss out on an opportunity to do something special. We got a lot of penetration on the play and took advantage of a loose ball. ... I just saw the ball loose, and there it was."
Chiefs Player Quotes - Chargers from The Mothership
Can the Chiefs really win the AFC West?
It's way too early to make any declarations about the AFC West title, but one thing that is a fact at the moment is no team in the division is playing better football than the Chiefs. Back-to-back wins at Oakland last week in the franchise's first road shutout since 1976 and now on "Monday Night Football" against hard-charging San Diego, prove that. All three teams are tied atop the AFC West at 4-3, but the Chiefs' late-season schedule doesn't look as daunting anymore.
Up and down the sideline, the Kansas City Chiefs were telling each other the game wasn't over. Didn't matter that Philip Rivers was under center with less than a minute left, and that Nick Novak was poised to kick the winning field goal for San Diego.
The Chiefs have had their backs against the wall enough this season.
They certainly weren't going to just quit.
Still, the loudest applause during Monday's ESPN Chalk Talk Luncheon at the stadium's Founder's Club was reserved for two Kansas City high school athletes who were honored as Rise Above Award recipients.
ESPN's Chalk Talk Honors Inner-City Athletes from KC Star
The season's first three weeks are just an ugly memory. The Kansas City Chiefs are surging, owners of their longest winning streak in almost seven years.
They also own a share of first place in the AFC West.
Chiefs Sneak By Chargers In Overtime from USA Today
The Kansas City Chiefs finally gave up some points, but when the defense needed to come through, it got a big stop against a turnover-prone quarterback that turned a likely loss into an unlikely victory, 23-20 over the San Diego Chargers.
With the win, the Chiefs became the fifth team since 1980, and the first since the 2000 Pittsburgh Steelers to win four straight games after an 0-3 start.
Chiefs Drop Chargers In Unlikely Fashion from ESPN
With every great moment in Philip Rivers' career, every clutch win or incredible playoff run, there comes a frustrating letdown. Whether it's the playoff losses in the 2006, '07, '08 and '09 seasons or flat out missing the postseason in 2010, Rivers has been one of the NFL's poster children for unfulfilled potential.
And yet, for all those heartbreaks, it's hard to imagine Rivers enduring a worse moment than the one he had Monday night in the Chargers' 23-20 loss.
Philip Rivers' Epic Blunder Dooms Chargers from Sports Illustrated
1.Todd Haley's homeless look: Haley is sporting a winning beard, meaning he won't shave again until the Chiefs lose, and it'll be on display for Halloween. He looks like a combination of Artie Lang's younger, skinnier (and more sober) brother and the crazed son of Kevin McAllister's body-burying neighbor in Home Alone. And it's beginning to scare small children. If the Chargers beat the Chiefs tonight, I think they'd be doing us -- and our kids -- a huge favor by forcing Haley to razor that thing off his face. Reminds me of: this guy from Hellraiser.
Top Ten With A Twist: Halloween Edition from CBS Sports
Hail to the Chiefs: This game will be remembered for Rivers' gaffe, but the Chiefs -- who were terrific on offense and defense in overtime -- deserve great credit. This team was left for dead after starting 0-3. The Chiefs have won four straight games and have a look of a team that is ready to defend its division title.
The division game on the big Monday night stage was especially Romo-esque. On the surface, his statistics showed a decent game: 26 for 41 for 369 yards, his second-best total of the season.
Yet over and over, he overthrew receivers on deep balls. Or he threw ever-so-slightly behind them on mid-field crossing routes. Or he didn't capitalize on a nonexistent Chiefs pass rush. Or his team took a silly penalty to hurt any progress he made; the Chargers had 12 penalties for 105 yards. Rivers' only touchdown pass was called back on an offensive pass-interference call on Gates.
Another Rivers Stinker Sinks Bolts from FOX Sports
The television cameras zoomed in on Philip Rivers just after he had fumbled away the San Diego Chargers' chance to beat the Kansas City Chiefs in regulation.
It didn't take a professional lip-reader for the message to come across.
"This," Rivers said on the sideline, "is the worst day ever."
Only for the Chargers.
It was awfully good for the Chiefs.
Chargers' Rivers: 'This Is The Worst Day Ever' from The San Antonio Express-News