Trent Green Directs 80-Yard TD Drive in Final Minutes to Lift Chiefs Over Raiders 17-13
11-19-2006 5:16 PM
By DOUG TUCKER, AP Sports Writer
KANSAS CITY, Mo. --
Trent Green looked and felt just like new. He was at his best when Kansas City needed him most. After passing for barely 50 yards in his return from a 10-week layoff, the two-time Pro Bowl quarterback coolly threw for 50 yards in one game-winning fourth-quarter drive.
Hitting three of five in the final minutes, Green set up Larry Johnson's 1-yard go-ahead touchdown run and rallied the sluggish Chiefs past injury-riddled Oakland 17-13.
"The majority of games in this league come down to the fourth quarter, and finding ways to get that done," said Green, who couldn't even drive the first couple of weeks after suffering a severe concussion on Sept. 10.
"I just feel proud I was able to contribute to that part of it and make some throws when we needed."
The Raiders held a 13-10 lead when the Chiefs (6-4) took the ball on their 20 with 4:53 to play. He hit 3-of-5, including passes of 10 and 16 yards to Samie Parker and a beauty of a 24-yard gainer to Eddie Kennison.
Johnson, with 1:32 to play, squeezed into the end zone, capping a two-touchdown, 159-yard rushing game on his 27th birthday.
"I wouldn't say I had any extra butterflies. I was just so anxious to get the thing started waking up this morning," said Green, who was a conservative 9-of-16 for 102 yards. "It's been hard, especially these last two or three weeks when I felt really good and felt like I could go out and play."
The Raiders (2-8) also made a quarterback switch, starting Aaron Brooks over Andrew Walter for the first time since Sept. 17. Brooks hit Ronald Curry for a 39-yard gain to the Chiefs 8 with 32 seconds left. But safety Jarrad Page intercepted his next pass intended for Randy Moss in the end zone.
"That was not a game-saving play," said cornerback Patrick Surtain. "That was a season-saver."
Oakland's NFL-worst offense had already suffered two key injuries, losing starting running back Lamont Jordan to a knee injury in the first quarter and left tackle Robert Gallery to a dislocated elbow in the third. The Raiders said Jordan had a torn knee ligament and is likely out for the year. Gallery had a dislocated elbow.
"That was a very tough loss for us," said Raiders coach Art Shell. "Hopefully, one day we can get this thing turned around, and I believe we will."
Brooks was 13-for-22 for 179 yards.
"His effort shows what he is capable of doing," Shell said.
Green's winning drive was also keyed by a gutsy call to go for it on fourth-and-one from the Kansas City 29. Johnson seemed to get the first down, but then 15 yards were tacked on because of a face mask penalty against Oakland lineman Terdell Sands.
"I just looked at the clock and felt at that point it was a gut feeling," said Chiefs coach Herm Edwards.
The Chiefs took a 7-0 lead on their initial possession, with Johnson capping a 76-yard, 11-play drive with a 5-yard TD run. But they ran only eight plays the rest of the first half while the Raiders dominated time of possession.
Sebastian Janikowski kicked field goals of 41 and 36 yards, and Oakland took a 13-7 lead with 19 seconds left in the first half when Brooks hit Courtney Anderson with a 2-yard TD toss.
Lawrence Tynes kicked a 37-yard field goal in the third quarter, but missed a 35-yarder that could have tied it in the fourth.
Green attempted only four passes in the first half. Until the final drive, Green spent most of the day handing off to Johnson. But Green did get roughed up a few times, even taking a good shot to the upper body by linebacker Thomas Howard.
"I had the scramble where I think everybody kind of health their breath, or at least I know my family did, and some of the guys on the sidelines," Green said with a grin.
But the veteran quarterback bounced up every time and seemed unfazed by anything, not even the absence of several injured starters, including Pro Bowl left guard Brian Waters and Pro Bowl tight end Tony Gonzalez.
"Trent has something you really can't teach," said tight end Jason Dunn. "A person's just got to have it, and he's one of those people who has it. Leadership. He's a natural born leader."
Notes:@ Gonzalez missed his first game since 1999 with a shoulder injury. The Raiders have lost 11 straight to AFC West opponents since a 25-24 victory at Denver on Nov. 28, 2004. It was the seventh straight victory for Kansas City over Oakland, all by seven points or fewer.
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