Holmes is inducted into Chiefs’ hall
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Sometimes the football bounces your way, as it has for the Kansas City Chiefs lately.
And then there’s the hapless New York Jets.
At the midpoint of the National Football League season, two teams headed in opposite directions met Sunday afternoon at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs captured their third consecutive win and their fifth in the last six games, a 24-10 victory, improving to 5-3 on the season.
“It was a must-win,” Chiefs linebacker Tamba Hali said. “We had to come out and win. We couldn’t imagine being 4-4 ... that’s tough after eight games.
“We’ve got eight to go, and we’re happy where we are right now, but we could be better.”
The Jets lost their eighth straight in dropping to 1-8.
The Chiefs used a couple of deflections to score their first two touchdowns in building a 14-0 lead after one quarter.
On their first score, running back Jamaal Charles took a handoff from quarterback Alex Smith and darted to his right, deflected off his own offensive lineman, Mike McGlynn, and fell into the end zone for a 1-yard touchdown with 8:38 remaining in the opening quarter.
On the Chiefs’ second touchdown, Smith faked a handoff to Charles near the goal line and threw toward wide receiver Dwayne Bowe in the end zone. But Jets outside linebacker Calvin Pace deflected the pass and it dropped into the arms of Chiefs tight end Anthony Fasano, who caught the ball in a sitting position, turned and reached across the goal line with the ball for the two-touchdown lead at the 3:20 mark.
“Just the way we drew it up,” Kansas City head coach Andy Reid joked, “starting a new trend in the NFL.”
Fasano had missed on a block on Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson on the play.
“While I was on the ground, the ball popped up in my lap,” Fasano said. “I was at the right place at the right time, and I really didn’t have to do much to catch it.”
The Chiefs led at halftime, 21-10, after the two teams combined for 17 points during the final 2:09 of the second quarter.
After Jets wide receiver Eric Decker caught a 3-yard scoring pass from quarterback Michael Vick at the 2:09 mark, Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce caught a 12-yard TD pass from Smith to cap a four-play, 29-yard drive with 39 seconds left before halftime to make it 21-7.
After a 65-yard return on the ensuing kickoff by Percy Harvin, the Jets got into field-goal range for a 39-yarder by Nick Folk as time expired in the first half, making it 21-10.
Cairo Santos’ 19-yard field goal for the Chiefs with 5:06 remaining in the third quarter was the only points of the second half.
• Houston adds to total — Chiefs linebacker Justin Houston had two sacks against the Jets, increasing his NFL-leading total to 12. He currently has a three-sack lead over Denver’s Von Miller and Minnesota’s Everson Griffen, both of whom have nine. … Houston, a four-year pro out of the University of Georgia, has 38½ sacks in his last 40 games, including five sacks in his last two. Houston is on pace to break the NFL single-season record, set by Michael Strahan, who had 22½ in 2001 with the New York Giants. … The late Derrick Thomas, a Chiefs icon and linebacker from 1989-99, totaled 126.5 sacks in his career, ranking No. 12 in NFL history. Thomas still holds the single-game record of seven sacks, a feat which occurred against Seattle’s Dave Krieg on Veterans Day, 1990. Thomas had a Chiefs-record 20 sacks in 1990, a mark that still stands today.
• Hail to the Priest — Former Kansas City running back Priest Holmes name was unfurled in the Chiefs’ Ring of Honor on Sunday, as he was officially inducted as the 44th member of the Chiefs’ Hall of Fame.
Holmes, who played for the Chiefs from 2001-07, finished with a then-franchise-record 6,070 rushing yards in 2007, which, incidentally was broken by Charles this season.
In his first season in Kansas City in 2001, Holmes, who wore No. 31, rushed for a Chiefs’ single-season record of 1,555 yards and then topped that with a club-record 1,615 yards on 2002.
Holmes was selected as the NFL Offensive Player of the Year in 2002. He led the league with 2,287 total yards, scored 24 touchdowns and ranked No. 3 in rushing yards.
Holmes’ best season was 2003, when the Chiefs won their first nine games and finished 13-3. He rushed for an NFL-record 27 touchdowns, a mark that has since been broken twice, while leading the team in rushing (1,420 yards) and breaking his club record for receptions for a running back (74). He had 70 catches in 2002.
Charles marveled at Holmes’ accomplishments.
“Me and Priest are close,” said Charles, who broke Holmes’ franchise record for yards in the Chiefs’ 23-20 win at San Diego earlier in the seaosn. “We went to the same school (Texas) and I’m able to take over the legacy now that he gave me the torch.
“I’m happy to be a part of this organization. I came here knowing that they had some great running backs. I’m blessed.”