Kansas City, Mo. So Joe, how did it go?
"Average, or below average from what I consider I'm capable of," Joe Montana, the Chiefs' new quarterback, said after Thursday night's 30-7 loss to Buffalo before 73,550 fans at Arrowhead Stadium.
The four-time Super Bowl winner completed 6 of 11 passes for 97 yards in his first-ever appearance as a Chief. He hit J.J. Birden and Willie Davis on 24-yard completions to go with a 28-yarder to tight end Jonathan Hayes.
However, the Chiefs did not score during Montana's three first-quarter drives.
On the first possession, he led Kansas City from its own 30 to the Buffalo 1 in 10 plays. But two Harvey Williams rushes failed to gain a yard, and a fourth-down pass to Mike Dyal fell incomplete.
"I THINK there will be many more opportunities, but the first one (touchdown) would have been nice," Montana said.
He said he was "overwhelmed" by pre-game introductions. The fans, many standing, gave him a thunderous ovation.
"I don't think there are words to explain the good feeling you get from that," Montana said. "It makes you feel more pressure in a way. I feel bad the way the whole team played, myself included. We get a chance to play before these fans again next week (Saturday versus Minnesota). Hopefully we'll play better."
The Chiefs, who looked good in a last week's preseason opening 29-21 win over Green Bay, did an about-face before their largest home exhibition crowd in 20 years.
Quarterback Matt Blundin, who worked the second and fourth quarters, completed 8 of 22 passes for 73 yards and three interceptions. Dave Krieg, who played the third quarter, hit 5 of 9 passes for 45 yards. His first pass attempt was intercepted by Mickey Washington and lugged from the KC 28 to the one. Buffalo's Nate Turner scored on the next play, making it 23-7.
THE BILLS' regulars, who played sparingly, riddled the Chiefs early. Quarterback Jim Kelly played one series and connected with Don Beebe on a 74-yard pass play that set up a one-yard scoring burst by Carwell Gardner.
In all, Buffalo outgained the Chiefs 339 yards to 239.
"I want to assure the people we're not as bad as we looked tonight and we will bounce back," said linebacker Derrick Thomas.
"It got out of hand. It snowballed on us," Hayes said. "Who likes to lose? I don't care if you're playing tiddlywinks against your brother. It's no fun to lose, especially not the way we lost tonight."
Running back Williams had a rough first quarter. He gained 7 yards on 7 carries, most importantly failing twice from the 1.
"It was very annoying. At some point in this we've got to be able to make a yard," said KC coach Marty Schottenheimer.
The Chiefs fumbled three times and lost all three for a total of seven turnovers. The Bills had five.
"You can't turn the ball over seven times and beat anybody in this league," Schottenheimer said. "There is no reason to be involved in a game like that when you have the kind of team we have. You can't hide from it. It had nothing to do with preseason or regular season. I don't care if you're playing flag football, you don't like to play like that."