We’ve seen it all season long, and again on Monday night, the Chiefs had a chance to land a major upset at Heinz Field vs the Steelers.
And blew it.
The outcome – a hard fought 16-13 overtime loss, a game that the Chiefs had a 10-0 lead, and then rallied for a Ryan Succop 46-yard field goal at the buzzer to send the game into OT.
It was the OT that saw the Chiefs simply give the game away. Matt Cassel, playing the role of turnover machine, threw a pick on the second play of OT, throwing it right to Lawrence Timmons, who took it to the five yard line.
Not wasting time, the Steelers went to kicker Shaun Suisham, who nailed the 23-yard field goal for the win.
The loss drops the Chiefs to 1-8, but it was the way they did it that hurts more than anything. Dumb penalties, including one REALLY dumb one where they did a team dance in the end zone after it appeared Steelers backup QB Byron Leftwich fumbled it and it was picked up for a score.
Problem, the play was ruled correctly, an incomplete pass, and the Chiefs after their dance, were given a 15-yard penalty that gave the Steelers a first down.
Then there was the apparent Dwayne Bowe score, in which he taunted Steelers safety Will Allen by holding out the ball. The play was, as one would expect, called back on a hold by Branden Albert.
The play hurt even more when Succop pushed wide a 33-yard field goal that kept the game tied at 10 in the third quarter.
Cassel went 11 for 26 passes for 154 yards. Jammal Charles, who scored the Chiefs only TD that counted, rushed the ball 23 times for 100 yards. The Chiefs D held Pittsburgh to just 249 yards of offense.
They knocked Steelers starting QB Ben Roethlisberger out of the game in the third quarter, and backup Byron Leftwich only managed to lead the team on a field goal drive that gave the Steelers a 13-10 lead early in the fourth quarter.
The Chiefs didn’t take long to erase one bit of misery in their lifeless, luckless season, taking their first lead since New Year’s Day during a spirited first half in which they avoided the kind of gaffes – turnovers, penalties, assignment breakdowns – that have plagued them all year.
With Charles gashing Pittsburgh’s defensive line and Cassel avoiding mistakes, Kansas City raced in front 10-0. Cassel hit Tony Moeaki for 38 yards on the Chiefs’ second drive, setting up a 12-yard touchdown run by Charles to give Kansas City its first lead since a 7-3 victory over Denver in the 2011 regular-season finale.
The lead grew to 10-0 after an Isaac Redman fumble deep in Pittsburgh territory led to a 22-yard field goal by Succop.