The Chiefs kept finding themselves in third-and-long because they couldn’t use the running game to create more manageable third downs or break anything big. The longest run of the day was quarterback Alex Smith’s 13-yard run on a college-looking option. Still, they managed 111 hard-earned yards, a 4.1-yard average and Jamaal Charles rammed in two touchdowns.
Smith completed less than 50 percent of his passes, and his 128 yards were a season-low. But he used good judgment by throwing the ball away when no one was open, and he did not throw an interception. Quarterbacks are judged by one statistic, and Smith is 6-0 this season.
The Chiefs made Darren McFadden, a long-time nemesis, work hard for his 52 yards in 16 carries with a long of just 8 yards. Containing quarterback Terrelle Pryor was a different issue, allowing him to escape for a some killer breakout runs.
Punter Dustin Colquitt kept tilting the field in the Chiefs’ favor all day with four of his eight punts landing inside the 20 -- at the 18, 4, 14 and 18 -- and kicker Ryan Succop booted four of his five kickoffs out of the end zone for touchbacks. As a result, Oakland’s average starting position was its 20; the Chiefs’ average start was their 36.
Defensive coordinator Bob Sutton came up with a gem of a game plan, often using seven defensive backs who blanketed receivers and allowed the pass rush to sack Pryor 10 times, the second-most in team history to 11 against Cleveland in 1984. Outside linebackers Tamba Hali and Justin Houston sniffed out some of Oakland’s gadget plays by staying home and not over-committing, another sign of a well-coached team.