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Archive for Wednesday, December 20, 2000

Cunningham bemoans inconsistency

Victories over Broncos, Rams give hint of what Chiefs’ season might have been

December 20, 2000

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— They beat Denver twice. They clobbered St. Louis. They came within a whisker of winning at Tennessee.

Then they turned around and lost to San Francisco and New England and managed somehow to become the "1" for 1-14 San Diego.

As they head for Atlanta and the regular-season finale Sunday in this up-and-down year, the Kansas City Chiefs themselves must be wondering how in the span of one season they could be so bad and so good.

A victory over the Falcons would let them end the year on a three-game winning streak and square their record at 8-8.

That would come on the heels of a five-game losing streak that saw their season collapse in losses to Oakland, San Francisco, Buffalo, San Diego and New England.

"The losses at San Diego and New England are easily explainable," said coach Gunther Cunningham. "We lost our starting quarterback and our backup quarterback wasn't able to get it done in the San Diego game."

Elvis Grbac sat out that game with a splint on his right index finger while Warren Moon passed for only 84 yards in a 17-16 setback.

The next week, Grbac returned against New England only to come up short in a 30-24 loss when he threw over the middle, short of the end zone, with no time-outs left and only a few seconds remaining.

"Elvis was still hurting in the New England game," Cunningham said. "We thought we could get away with it. It took about two to three weeks for him to get his touch back. It was more than a bruise, obviously. But that caused the offense to go downhill a little bit."

In the past two games, the running attack has snapped out of its slumber. In a 20-7 victory over Denver last week, Tony Richardson rushed for 156 yards, the most by a Chiefs back in 10 years.

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