Reeling from a failed rally effort that fell just short in week three, resulting in a 17-20 loss to the San Diego Chargers, the (0-3) Chiefs faced a critical game situation in week four. Quite like their similarly winless opponents, the (0-3) Minnesota Vikings. Despite their record, they had been dominating large portions of their early season losses, falling behind only in the dwindling minutes against the San Diego Chargers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and undefeated Detroit Lions.
We have all heard people use the expression of “history repeating itself,” and unfortunately for them, this once again proved to be the case. After taking a three point lead in the third quarter from a Ryan Longwell field-goal, the Vikings once again displayed their inadequacy to play competitively in the late minutes of a football game. This weakness would result in Minnesota’s first season since 2002 where they find themselves without a single victory four weeks into the season. On the other side of the football, the “Ryan Succop field-goal,” would prove to be a familiar theme throughout the game, Including a 54-yard field-goal in the third quarter – Succop’s career longest. Just as well for Succop, his five total field-goals would tie Jan Stenerud and Nick Lowery for the Chief’s single-game field-goal record. Succop struck first in the game, with a 40 yard field-goal in the first quarter.
They responded quickly, with 34-yard strike from Donovan McNabb to wide receiver Devin Aromashodu to put the Vikings on top 7-3. The only scores produced during the second quarter, were the products of two additional Succop field-goals; one from 24 yards, the other from 51 yards.
After the halftime break, Longwell would put his team on top, 10-9 with a 31-yard kick, however the Chiefs would not look back from this point forward. They responded with two field-goals of their own before the close of the third quarter, and would tack on seven more points to the scoreboard with a touchdown resulting from a 52-yard pass from Matt Cassel to Dwayne Bowie in the fourth quarter.
Minnesota was the last team to score in the game with another McNabb touchdown – too little, too late. Before the game, Kansas City was the team feeling the pressure. Their opening game loss to the Buffalo Bills was not a flattering showing. Post-game, it’s fair to say that the pressure has shifted to rest squarely on the shoulders of Minnesota’s head coach, Leslie Frazier, who was looking to answer questions from doubters in this game, but only succeeded in raising additional ones. For a moment, it looked as if they were set to build upon their 7-3 lead in the first quarter, but this never materialized. A very familiar theme for the followers of the Minnesota Vikings. They seem to burst with energy at one point in the game, only to fall flat on their faces at the very next moment. If the team, and Frazier, hope to silence critics (and quite possibly salvage their season), they had better find a way to fix this issue – and fast! Otherwise, no one will be interested in buying Vikings tickets this season.