OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- A smiling Dick Vermeil scurried through
the tight quarters of the visiting locker room hugging and
high-fiving his players.
Kansas City's disappointing season took a positive turn Sunday,
and the emotional coach felt some sense of relief to finally be on
the winning end again.
It took a near perfect half by Trent Green, tender ribs and all,
to get the Chiefs an important comeback win.
Green completed 14 of 15 passes after halftime for 229 of his
340 yards and hit Eddie Kennison for a tiebreaking 70-yard
touchdown with 2:04 left in Kansas City's 34-27 victory over the
Oakland Raiders on Sunday.
Green's only incomplete pass after halftime was batted down.
"Trent did a beautiful job," Vermeil said. "Sometimes you
take him for granted because you see him do so many wonderful
things. I don't know if any quarterback has had a better second
half of football than he played today. ... We've been struggling.
It was big for us. We needed it badly."
Kennison's winning catch came at the 35-yard line, then he ran
out of the grasp of rookie safety Stuart Schweigert. The Chiefs
(4-8) scored on all four of their second-half possessions to end a
four-game losing streak.
"From the overall game management standpoint, it was my best
game," said Green, who didn't know for sure until Friday that he
would play. "All four of our receivers were going deep (on the
winning touchdown). I noticed Eddie was behind his coverage."
Kennison finished with eight catches for 149 yards.
Larry Johnson scored two second-half touchdowns, on a 5-yard run
and a 10-yard reception from Green. Johnson was given the game ball
afterward, and praised by general manager Carl Peterson.
"A lot of people in the media said I couldn't do what I did
today," said Johnson, the team's top draft pick in 2003. "I knew
if I got the opportunity, I could do something."
Raiders quarterback Kerry Collins earned cheers for once from
Oakland's unforgiving fans, but couldn't pull off a victory in the
waning seconds as he did a week ago in a thrilling 25-24 win over
the Broncos in the snow. Collins was sacked in Oakland's final
drive and also threw four incomplete passes.
The Raiders (4-8) haven't won at home since beating Tampa Bay in
"It hurts to lose in that fashion," Raiders safety Ray
Collins connected with Ronald Curry for two of his three
touchdown passes and was 27-of-41 for 343 yards without an
Curry had TD receptions of 34 and 26 yards for the Raiders
before being carted off with 5:46 remaining with what is probably a
torn left Achilles' tendon. Jerry Porter caught a 51-yard scoring
Curry was having a career game when he took a hard hit from
safety Willie Pile on a 22-yard catch with 5:46 left in the fourth
Curry had nine catches for a career-high 141 yards -- a Raiders'
season high -- and two touchdowns. He will have an MRI on Monday.
Lawrence Tynes kicked a 22-yard field goal, his second of the
game, for the Chiefs to tie it at 27 with 6:59 remaining.
Four-time Pro Bowl cornerback Charles Woodson, who played some
safety to defend tight end Tony Gonzalez, got his first
interception of the season 10:35 before halftime and returned it 25
yards, giving the Raiders the ball at their own 48 and setting up
Collins' first touchdown pass to Curry three plays later.
The Raiders' celebratory behavior appeared to anger the Chiefs
on several occasions, especially after Kansas City running back
Derrick Blaylock left the game with a mild neck strain early in the
second quarter after a hard hit from cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha.
"They didn't need to celebrate. We still had a lot of football
to play," Chiefs left tackle Willie Roaf said. "Our offense is
potent and we showed that today, so it's not worth celebrating
until the game's over."
Blaylock, who started in place of injured star Priest Holmes,
returned midway through the third quarter.
Both teams played without their top runners.
Holmes is sidelined with a sprained ligament in his right knee,
and Oakland's Tyrone Wheatley is out with a torn hamstring.
Oakland linebacker DeLawrence Grant, who started the first nine
games, was inactive for the third straight week and wasn't even
visible on the sideline Sunday. The only thing coach Norv Turner
has said about Grant's absence is that some of it has to do with
The Raiders were held to 30 yards rushing on only 10
carries after coming into the game averaging a league-worst 75.4
yards on the ground. ... Sebastian Janikowski kicked field goals of
27 and 36 yards for the Raiders.