Game Balls: Chiefs vs. Broncos

The Kansas City Chiefs were embarrassed in Denver by the Broncos on Sunday afternoon 49-29 in a game that wasn’t nearly as close as the score would indicate.

The Broncos came out firing, jumping out to a 21 point lead in the first quarter and they never looked back.  The Chiefs defense was helpless against the league’s worst rushing attack and never touched Denver QB Kyle Orton.

Similar to last week, Kansas City was meeting a division rival for the 100th time in the regular season and once again they deliver a performance that the NFL will be in no hurry to immortalize.

On offense Jamaal Charles and the league leading running game never had a chance to get going with the Chiefs put in an immediate hole.  The deficit did allow Matt Cassel to put up a career 469 yards passing, though 373 of those yards came after the Broncos were up 35-0 with the last 7 coming on a Cassel fumble returned for a touchdown.

As difficult as it might be to look at the positives after that severe of a beating, here are the best of the worst from offense, defense and special teams.

Offense: Dwayne Bowe

The Chiefs No. 1 receiver continued his amazing run since dropping a potential game-winning touchdown in Indianapolis.  He has a touchdown in each game since then and with 2 against the Broncos he now has a career-high nine scores.

Bowe finished the day with career-highs of 13 catches and 186 yards, nearly setting a Chiefs record for receptions (only Tony Gonzalez had more) and tying for most consecutive games with a TD (5, with Chris Burford and Otis Taylor).

The stats in the passing game take a hit because of it coming after the game was decided, but it should be considered part of the maturation of Dwayne Bowe.  If this is last season, there’s a good chance he stops fighting for the extra yards and taking the hits during this kind of beat down.

Defense: Derrick Johnson

It’s near impossible to find positives from the effort of the Chiefs defense.  In a game the Denver offense did basically whatever it pleased, The one player that seemed to be all over the field, trying to get the job done was Johnson.

The linebacker easily led the team in tackles with 12 and also had 2 passes defensed.  Like the rest of the defense, Johnson’s day was not without mistakes as Johnson had his weekly dropped interception.  Once again, the potential interception would have likely gone for a touchdown.

Special Teams: Eric Berry

Possibly the one play of the game that gave Chiefs fans hope for a comeback was delivered by Berry.

On the final play of the first half, Denver kicker Matt Prater attempted a 58 yard field goal and the safety — not return man Javier Arenas — was waiting to catch it 9 yards deep in the end zone.  Berry took a couple steps to his right, then zoomed up the left sideline and if not for a missed block by Leonard Pope, likely would have taken the ball to the house.

The return gave Kansas City the ball at the Denver 22 yard line with 1 second remaining, enough time for Ryan Succop to kick a 40 yard field goal to make it a 35-10 halftime deficit.  With the Chiefs due to get the ball first out of the break, there was finally a bit of light at the end of the tunnel, though that went out when the offense failed to pick up a first down and had to punt.

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