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Kansas City Chiefs fans knew a collapse was coming ... until it didn't

The Chiefs finally stepped up in a tight game and made the plays necessary for a massive road win.

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

All I could do was wait.

Despite controlling the ball and leading for much of the fourth quarter, I sat on my couch looking skyward, waiting for the roof to cave in. I waited for Philip Rivers to beat one of the Kansas City Chiefs' inexperienced corners for the game-winning touchdown. I waited for someone to make a back-breaking play to hand the San Diego Chargers a win. I waited for Cairo Santos to miss that 48-yard field goal. I waited for San Diego to create a miracle.

I waited for what seemed like eternity. The clock hit 0:00 and I looked skyward once more. The roof was still strong.

For years, Kansas City has made a mockery of hope. The Chiefs have long laughed in the faces of their desperate fans, knowing that something horrible was in store. This season, Kansas City had come tantalizingly close to beating the Denver Broncos and San Francisco 49ers on the road, only to fall short. On Sunday, despite a mountain of their own errors, the Chiefs made all the plays late that winning teams are known for.

Sometimes, a young team needs to lose before it can win. Kansas City is one of the youngest teams in football, and it has learned hard lessons in the Andy Reid era, dropping all four games against Denver and San Diego last season before blowing a 38-10 lead in the playoffs to the Indianapolis Colts.

Then 2014 began, and the Chiefs appeared ready once more to play the part of underachieving afterthought. Kansas City was humiliated by the Tennessee Titans and suffered three season-ending injuries in the process. The following week, Eric Berry went down and still hasn't returned. It appeared for all the world that, yes, it was a lost season for a franchise which knows nothing but misery all too often.

Since that day in Denver, the Chiefs are 3-1 with impressive wins over the Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots and Chargers. For once, the team is getting better by the week, showcasing new talent in Travis Kelce and De'Anthony Thomas. This time around, Kansas City has risen above what appeared to be crushing injuries by having ample depth, led by Josh Mauga, Phillip Gaines, Ryan Harris and Ron Parker.

At 3-3, the Chiefs have a chance to make the playoffs for the second consecutive season, something this organization has not done since Joe Montana was the quarterback in 1993-94. Kansas City appears to understand what it takes to win against the best, even when things aren't perfect.

Still, their are more tests ahead. The Chiefs have proven they can beat anybody at any venue. Now they have to topple teams like the St. Louis Rams and New York Jets at home. Kansas City has to avoid traps and make sure it doesn't relax because of the opponent's record. When the Chiefs hit the field next week, and the following one, they will unquestionably be the most talented team on the field. Still, that is far from a guarantee. The preparation and dedication must remain for a solid postseason push.

Now is a time for making a run toward January football. Even with all the playoff failures of years past, I yearn for the opportunity at redemption.

Don't make me wait, Kansas City.

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