Oct 13, 2006

Gameday Preview

Chiefs at Steelers
Sunday, October 15

3:15 PM

Player of the Week Honors
Listen Live to the Chiefs vs Steelers


TV: CBS National Coverage (KCTV-5 in Kansas City) – Greg Gumbel and Dan Dierdorf.

NATIONAL RADIO: CBS Radio/Westwood One – Harry Kalas and Trev Alberts.

LOCAL RADIO: KCFX-FM (101.1) – Mitch Holthus, Len Dawson, Bob Gretz and Bill Grigsby.

Kansas City travels to Pittsburgh for the first time since ‘89 as the Chiefs make their initial appearance at Heinz Field. To put that 17-year drought between Chiefs games in Pittsburgh in perspective, Chiefs President Carl Peterson was in his first season with Kansas City in ‘89, Chuck Noll was still coaching the Steelers and Marty Schottenheimer was in his initial campaign patrolling the sidelines for the Chiefs.

The Chiefs will be seeking their first win in the Steel City since posting a 24-19 victory (12/21/86), a game that propelled Kansas City to its first postseason berth since ‘71. The 2006 Chiefs coached by Herm Edwards have engineered a two-game winning streak thanks to the consistent play of QB Damon Huard and a rapidly-improving defense. Kansas City evened its record at 2-2 after battling back from a 14-point deficit last week to register a last-minute, 23-20 win at Arizona (10/1).

Despite losing two-time Pro Bowl QB Trent Green on Opening Day, Huard has filled in admirably. The 10-year NFL veteran ranks second in the NFL with a 107.4 passer rating and a 70.2 completion percentage, owning five TD passes and no INTs on 104 pass attempts this season.

Kansas City currently ranks fourth in the NFL in total defense, permitting just 254.3 ypg. The Chiefs are sixth in the league in scoring defense and have permitted just 52 points after four games in 2006, the club’s best total since giving up 49 points through four contests in ‘93. The Chiefs have also allowed just 58 first downs, the club’s lowest tally at the four-game mark since relinquishing 55 first downs after four games in ‘92.

The defending Super Bowl champions currently own an uncharacteristic 1-3 record and are seeking to snap a three-game losing streak after suffering a 23-13 loss on Sunday night at San Diego (10/8). However, this isn’t completely uncharted territory for the Steelers, who rebounded from a three-game losing streak in 2005 before winning eight straight regular and postseason games en route to a Super Bowl XL title a year ago. After facing the Steelers, the Chiefs will return home for contests at Arrowhead vs. San Diego (10/22) and vs. Seattle (10/29), while Pittsburgh travels to Atlanta (10/22).

Kansas City is 9-16-0 (.360) all time against Pittsburgh in the 25 previous meetings between the two clubs (24 regular season, one postseason). The last eight meetings between the two clubs have all come at Arrowhead, with the two teams splitting those contests. Kansas City claimed a 41-20 win in the most recent regular season meeting in 2003. KC also produced a 27-24 OT win vs. Pittsburgh in the ‘93 AFC Playoffs. Neither team has won back-to-back games in this series since Pittsburgh ran off four straight wins from ‘87-92.

After eight consecutive Chiefs-Steelers games at Arrowhead, this AFC series will return to Pittsburgh for the first time since ‘89. Since the AFL-NFL merger in ‘70, the only two NFL clubs which have hosted one foe more consecutive times are Pittsburgh and Buffalo. New England made nine straight trips to Three Rivers Stadium from ‘81-95, while Denver traveled to Ralph Wilson Stadium nine times from ‘79-94. KC posted a 4-7 mark in 11 games at Three Rivers Stadium.

The Chiefs are seeking to win two consecutive games against Pittsburgh for the first time since winning the initial two games of this series in ‘70-71. The Steelers went on a seven-game winning streak against the Chiefs from ‘72-80, a mark which ties as the second-longest losing string KC has suffered against one club. Kansas City lost eight straight to Denver (’76-79) and lost seven straight to Oakland (’75-78).

Kansas City’s most recent victory at Pittsburgh was a 24-19 decision (12/21/86) in the ‘86 regular season finale that gave the Chiefs a 10-6 record and propelled the franchise to its first playoff berth in 15 years. Despite being outgained in total yardage by a 515-to-171-yard margin, the Chiefs scored all of their points on special teams via a blocked punt return TD, a FG, a kickoff return TD and a blocked FG TD to secure the victory and a postseason spot.