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Chiefs fall in OT on turnover Kansas City avoids dubious record in loss to Pittsburgh

  • Kansas City Star
  • Published Monday, Nov. 12, 2012, at 11:50 p.m.
  • Updated Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012, at 8:10 a.m.

— The 1929 Buffalo Bisons are able to rest comfortably again, their NFL record for futility at the start of an NFL season safe despite the efforts of the 2012 Chiefs.

That’s not much consolation for the Chiefs, who took their first lead of the season against the Steelers in their ninth game. They couldn’t hold the lead, losing 16-13 in overtime on a cold, rainy night.

The end came quickly in the extra period. On the second play from scrimmage, Matt Cassel’s pass was intercepted by linebacker Lawrence Timmons and returned to the Kansas City 5.

The Steelers wasted no time sending their field goal team on the field. Shaun Suisham’s 23-yard field goal was good, dropping the Chiefs to 1-8.

Until then, the Chiefs played one of their better games of the season. They scored the game’s first 10 points, saving them from surpassing the NFL record set by those 1929 Bisons for longest stretch to begin a season without having a lead during a game.

After falling behind 13-10 in the fourth quarter, the Chiefs put together a drive in the last two minutes. The big play was Cassel’s 27-yard pass to Dwayne Bowe on fourth and 15 to the Pittsburgh 28.

Ryan Succop sent the game into overtime with a 46-yard field goal on the final play of regulation.

The Chiefs, who led the league with 29 turnovers coming into the game, had none until Cassel’s fateful interception in overtime.

“If our guys keep that up, we can definitely get the ship turned around,’’ coach Romeo Crennel said.

The Chiefs took their first lead of the game midway through the first quarter or, to be more precise, 494 minutes and 51 seconds into their season. Cassel got the drive moving by passing 38 yards to Tony Moeaki, who broke a tackle to get to the Pittsburgh 25.

Jamaal Charles finally gave the Chiefs a lead two plays later when he scored on a 12-yard run.

A 7-0 lead wasn’t good enough for the Chiefs. They pushed it to 10-0 early in the second quarter on Succop’s 22-yard field goal, but the fact the Chiefs had to settle for three points instead of getting seven would prove to be a momentum-changer.

The Chiefs’ Allen Bailey recovered a Pittsburgh fumble at the Steelers’ 10, but two runs by Charles and one by Peyton Hillis moved the Chiefs only to the Steelers’ 4 and Succop then kicked his field goal.

Succop then sent the kickoff out of bounds, setting up the Steelers with good field position at their 40. Pittsburgh drove to its first score, but the Steelers had to settle for a 35-yard field goal from Suisham rather than a touchdown after first Eric Berry and then Jalil Brown broke up passes to end the drive.

Pittsburgh tied the game at 10-10 later in the second quarter. Mike Wallace made a spectacular catch in the end zone, initially gaining control of the ball with his legs. He eventually held on to complete the seven-yard score.

The Chiefs wasted a chance to take another lead in the third period. They moved into Pittsburgh territory and appeared to score a touchdown when Bowe took a screen pass 22 yards to the end zone. But the play was brought back because of a holding penalty

Succop eventually came on to try a 33-yard field goal, but it went wide right and the score remained tied at 10-10.

After Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger left the game with a shoulder injury, he was replaced by veteran backup Byron Leftwich. The Chiefs appeared to take the lead again when Justin Houston picked up a Leftwich fumble and ran it in for a touchdown.

But after a video review, officials ruled Leftwich’s arm was going forward and the play was an incomplete pass and not a fumble.

The Steelers eventually went ahead 13-10 early in the fourth quarter on Suisham’s 31-yard field goal.

Until their final drive of regulation, the Chiefs were unproductive in the fourth quarter. Their first three possessions of the period consisted of three plays and a punt.

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