Games Of The Decade

There was no across the board agreement by the readers and posters of on the Chiefs best game of the 2000s.

But there was agreement on whittling down the 162 games that counted to a handful and two games came out on top:

  • November 23, 2006: Thanksgiving night victory over Denver 19-10.
  • October 5, 2003: Victory over Denver 24-23 on Dante Hall’s 93-yard punt return.

Coming in a close third was the Chiefs victory on October 12, 2003 over the Green Bay Packers in overtime 40-34 at Lambeau Field.

Rounding out the top five was the 56-10 victory over the Atlanta Falcons on October 24, 2004 when the Chiefs scored an NFL record eight rushing touchdowns, and the 2002 regular season opener at Cleveland, when the Chiefs beat the Browns 40-39 thanks to that bizarre end of game moment where LB Dwayne Rudd thought his team won the game and ripped off his helmet and threw it across the field. That drew a penalty that allowed for a game winning FG by Morten Anderson.

Unfortunately, there were no Super Bowls, AFC Championship Games or even victories in the playoffs to consider as the game of decade. That left a historic holiday night game and a big victory over a division rival during the team’s best season of the 2000s.

Here are some of the comments from posters about all five games:

Thanksgiving ‘06

“The stadium was electric that night.”

“I was actually at that game, and my ears were ringing when I left the stadium. The crowd was very loud, the night was beautiful, and the Chiefs played some serious football.”

“It was such an honor to Lamar Hunt and it was so sad that he couldn’t be there that night.”

Denver ‘03

“Both Denver and K.C. were 4-0 and Dante’s amazing late punt return put the Chiefs in control of the division, helped by an official missing a block in the back.”

“Hall’s punt return was exceptional. It seemed like everyone in that stadium was literally jumping up and down in celebration.”

“The game in 2003 against Denver has to be tops because anytime you rob them of a win, it’s as sweet as it gets.”

“Most amazing win in the best season for the Chiefs in the decade.”

“Dante Hall had the 93-yard punt return and the defense had some big stops late after the punt return. The crowd in that game was like the crowds in the decade of the 90s.”

Green Bay ‘03

“I’d say the most impressive winning effort was the Packer game in ‘03. I remember pacing in my basement and my heart pumping like crazy. It was great.”

“I was at the game. Best one I ever saw. And it was a beautiful, sunny Fall day up here in Wisconsin. Chiefs were down by 14, came back and tied. Then down by 17, came back and tied. In overtime, Jerome Woods caused a fumble and we recovered. Green to Kennison, 51 yards, TD, game over, Chiefs 6-0, good night everybody. Lambeau Field practically deflated. And, Dante Hall was one kicker’s hand away from getting his 5th return for a touchdown in a row.”

Atlanta ‘04

“Eight Chiefs rushing touchdowns against one of the top rushing defenses in the league … (Michael) Vick never got anything going as he was contained well.”

“I thoroughly enjoyed the offensive clinic the Chiefs put on the Atlanta falcons a few years ago. Even Vick was impressed by our offensive efficiency.”

Cleveland ‘02

“John Tait rumbled with the ball, Rudd threw his helmet, and Morten Andersen kicked the game-winner. A crazy game and it was an indicator of what our defense was going to be like for the rest of the decade.”

That’s the list from the readers. Now, here’s my top 10 of the 162 games played during the 2000s by the Chiefs.


October 12, 2003

Green Bay Packers

40-34 OT victory

@ Lambeau Field

It was not so much just the outcome of the game, a victory that made the Chiefs 6-0 on the ‘03 season. It was the fact it came against a Packers team that won the NFC North that season and was led by QB Brett Favre. The Chiefs trailed by 14 points, came back to tie, fell behind by 17 points and came back to tie and then were behind by three points, until Morten Andersen hit a 31-yard FG to tie the game with five seconds to play. In OT, the Chiefs had the ball first, set up an Andersen FG try from 48 yards that was blocked. Packers RB Ahman Green fumbled on a hit by S Jerome Woods that was recovered by Wisconsin native LB Mike Maslowski. On the next play, Eddie Kennison went deep, beat his man and QB Trent Green hit him in stride for the winning TD.


November 27, 2005

New England Patriots

26-16 victory

@ Arrowhead Stadium

The Patriots were the two-time defending Super Bowl champions and they would go on to win another division championship in that season; a streak where they have now won or shared the AFC East title for seven seasons. The Chiefs defense intercepted New England QB Tom Brady four times in the game, with SS Greg Wesley grabbing three of those picks. FS Sammy Knight had the other INT. They also had three sacks, coming from DE Jared Allen, LB Kendrell Bell and Knight. The Chiefs jumped to a 13-0 lead before the Patriots scored. Then they held a 26-3 lead in the third quarter, before New England scored the final 13 points to make it close. QB Trent Green outperformed Brady, throwing for 323 yards and a 52-yard TD pass to WR Dante Hall. RB Larry Johnson ran for 119 yards and a touchdown and K Lawrence Tynes had four field goals.


October 24, 2004

Atlanta Falcons

56-10 victory

@ Arrowhead Stadium

The record still stands in the NFL record book: eight rushing touchdowns for the Chiefs in this game as they ran wild over a good Falcons squad. Atlanta won the NFC South with an 11-5 record in ‘04, advancing to the NFC Championship Game before they lost to the Eagles. Priest Holmes and Derrick Blaylock both had four rushing TDs. Holmes scored from 15, two, two and one-yard, while Blaylock scored from seven, one, three and two yards. Overall, the Chiefs had 540 offensive yards and 271 rushing yards. Forgotten is the fact the Chiefs defense allowed only 222 yards and no touchdowns; Atlanta’s only TD came on a punt return. CB Eric Warfield and SS Greg Wesley each had an interception of QB Michael Vick and the Chiefs got four sacks, including two by DE Jared Allen.


September 8, 2002

Cleveland Browns

40-39 victory

@ Browns Stadium

The ending of this game has to rank among the strangest in the decade, not just for the Chiefs, but for the entire league. This was not a game where a lot of defense was played by either team. Combined the teams had 881 total offensive yards and nine touchdowns. Each team had just one turnover and there was only one sack in the game. The teams exchanged the lead eight times and at one point, the Chiefs were down by 13 points. RB Priest Holmes had 122 rushing yards and four TD runs. TE Tony Gonzalez had a TD catch and Eddie Kennison caught four passes for 120 yards. When Browns K Phil Dawson hit a 41-yard FG with 29 seconds left to give Cleveland a 39-37 lead. On what appeared to be the final play of the game, QB Trent Green appeared sacked, but before he went down, he lateraled the ball to OT John Tait who carried it 28 yards as the clock ran out. But Cleveland LB Dwayne Rudd was penalized for taking off his helmet and throwing it at the end of the game. Tait’s run and the 15-yard penalty moved the ball to the Browns 12-yard line. With no time on the clock, Morten Andersen connected on a 30-yard FG for the victory.


January 11, 2004

Indianapolis Colts

38-31 defeat

@ Arrowhead Stadium

The heartbreak of the decade for the Chiefs came in this offensive showdown that featured 69 points, 842 yards and no punts by either team. The offenses went back and forth like a tennis match, as both teams scored in all four quarters. Peyton Manning was the star for the Colts, throwing for 304 yards and three touchdown passes, finishing with a 138.8 passer rating. Priest Holmes was the star for the Chiefs, as he had 176 rushing yards on 24 carries with two touchdowns. Down by 14 points in the fourth in the third quarter, Dante Hall had a 92-yard kickoff return that cut the margin to seven points. Hall had 208 yards in kickoff returns in the game, the third highest total in NFL post-season history. The Chiefs never had a lead in the game and trailed most of the second half by 14 points.


September 22, 2002

New England Patriots

41-38 OT defeat

@ Gillette Stadium

This is a forgotten game in the decade, but the Chiefs faced off against the defending Super Bowl champion Patriots in week No. 3 of the season. The Chiefs were coming off a 6-10 season and were just starting year two of the Dick Vermeil Era, they were 1-1 at the time, thanks to that remarkable victory over the Browns in the opener. The Chiefs came out and pounded the ball down the throats of the Patriots defense, running for 221 yards. Priest Holmes had 180 yards on 30 carries with two touchdown runs, and he caught a touchdown pass. New England led 38-31 with 2:30 left to play when QB Trent Green moved the offense down the field and with three seconds to play, Holmes scored on a one-yard run. Vermeil decided to kick the PAT to tie the score and send the game into overtime. The Patriots won the toss and went right down and won the game with a 35-yard FG from Adam Vinatieri. What might have happened had Vermeil gone for two points after Holmes’ TD?


October 5, 2003

Denver Broncos

24-23 victory

@ Arrowhead Stadium

It was probably the hottest streak in special teams history for the NFL, when Dante Hall had return touchdowns in four consecutive games. It was the fourth return that won this game, as Hall returned a punt 93 yards for the winning score late in the fourth quarter. The Chiefs had fought back in the third quarter from a 10-point deficit with a 28-yard TD pass from QB Trent Green to WR Johnnie Morton. Denver picked up a Jason Elam FG to push its lead to six points. That’s when Hall grabbed the punt and took off for the score that tied the game. Morten Andersen’s PAT kick was the winning point. TE Tony Gonzalez also had a TD catch. The victory left the Chiefs 5-0 for the first time in team history.


October 31, 2004

Indianapolis Colts

45-35 victory

@ Arrowhead Stadium

This afternoon at Arrowhead was the apex of the Flying Vermeil offense, as the Chiefs set a team record with 590 offensive yards, scored six touchdowns and grabbed a victory over the Colts, a team that would finish that season 12-4 and winners of the AFC South. QB Trent Green threw for 389 yards, completing 27 of 34 passes with three TD throws: 21 yards to TE Tony Gonzalez, seven yards to WR Johnnie Morton and another score of 14 yards to Gonzalez. RB Priest Holmes ran for 143 yards on 32 carries and TD runs for 21, 11 and one-yard. In total offense, Holmes finished with 225 yards on 35 touches. Gonzalez had eight catches for 125 yards and two scores. Peyton Manning threw for 472 yards and five touchdowns, but S Greg Wesley did get an interception, returning it 65 yards. WRs Reggie Wayne and Marvin Harrison both caught 119 yards worth of passes and each man had two touchdowns.


October 21, 2005

Miami Dolphins

30-20 victory

@ Dolphins Stadium

There haven’t been very many games in NFL history that have been affected by a hurricane. But that was the case in ‘05 as Hurricane Wilma was expected to roll into south Florida over the weekend of October 22-23. So the league moved the Chiefs-Dolphins game up to what became a Friday Night Lights game. The Chiefs flew to Florida late Friday morning, arriving a few hours before the kickoff, or just enough time to have a pre-game meal and then fight some heavy rain showers. But the game went off and it was a sterling performance by the Chiefs, who had 462 yards on offense, and held the Dolphins to 286 yards. Priest Holmes ran for 90 yards and two scores. Larry Johnson had 93 yards and a touchdown. Lawrence Tynes kicked three field goals, including making good on kicks from 51 and 52 yards. SS Greg Wesley had an interception and DE Erick Hicks had a sack.


September 23, 2001

New York Giants

13-3 defeat

@ Arrowhead Stadium

The terrorists attacks of September 11 were still very fresh in the minds of all Americans when the NFL returned to action after taking a week off. By chance, the Giants were scheduled for a visit to Arrowhead, so the game became ground zero for the NFL’s return and the Chiefs fans responded. They welcomed the Giants with a rousing ovation as they were introduced and passed a fireman’s boot through the crowd during the game for donations to a relief fund in New York. By the time the Chiefs organization matched the donations of the fans over $451,000 was turned over. The Giants had no trouble controlling this game, as they had the game’s only TD, on a seven-yard run by Ron Dayne. Morten Andersen kicked a pair of FGs for the Giants, and Todd Peterson had the Chiefs only points with a 33-yard FG.

One Response to “Games Of The Decade”

  • January 20, 2010  - Justin D says:

    Some nice games you mention there Bob. Almost made me forget about the futility we have faced the last few years – almost.

    As a Chiefs fan in Chicago, I remember taking a lot grief from Bears fans. I also remember dishing some out as ESPN picked the Chiefs as an early season favorite for the Superbowl. Yeah, the hexed us but sure was nice rolling up those wins, racking up those points and making Bear fans eat a little crow.

    Sadly that’s about all I got from that decade.

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