Win-starved Chiefs host win-starved Bills Print
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Thursday, 20 November 2008 15:05
NFL Headline News

 KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -The lessons of history are not lost on Brian Waters, Kansas City's battle-scarred, nine-year veteran left guard.
He's watched teams plunge to the bottom and flop around like fish in a mud hole gasping for breath. He knows his Chiefs since October 2007 are a nightmarish 1-18. He's seen tens of thousands of empty seats in once-teeming Arrowhead Stadium.
He has some advice.
``If guys want to continue to live the lives they're living - and that goes from the top down - and we want to stay employed, we'd better start winning some football games. Or things will change real quick.''
No one knows what owner and chairman of the board Clark Hunt is thinking about a season on pace to be the worst in team history. In July, Hunt said he knew this rebuilding season would be painful with so many young players on board, and that progress would be the key. Would they be playing better in December than in September?
Chiefs (1-9). But a few wins these last six games might keep a lot of people from cleaning out their desk. And everyone figures a good opportunity for a desperately needed win could come Sunday against Buffalo (5-5), a team that's been on its own downward spiral. After an encouraging 4-0 start, the Bills have lost four in a row, including a Monday night heartbreaker at home to Cleveland.
This will be a clash between two teams desperate for a victory.
``It doesn't matter if it's win ugly or win great,'' said Bills center Duke Preston. ``We have to go out and get a win. That's where our minds are right now and I wouldn't say there's a panic.''
Devastating injuries have been one problem for the Chiefs, who've been signing up other teams' castoffs week after week and hurriedly affixing them to a makeshift roster. The result has been predictable, especially on leaky kick coverage teams and a defense giving up a league-worst 402 yards a game.
The emergence of third-team quarterback Tyler Thigpen in his last four starts, completing almost 61 percent of his passes for eight touchdowns and only one interception, has been one of the few encouraging notes.
d Tamba Hali back.
Edwards, in something an embattled coach might say to a disgruntled owner, is putting the bulk of the responsibility for what happens the next six games squarely on the players.
``By the middle of November and in December, it's the players' time to play,'' Edwards said. ``And the players know that. That's when the players have to play.
Coaches can do only so much, Edwards said.
``It's up to the players at the end of the day. As coaches, we can make a call or put them in position, but they have to pull the trigger and do it. They're getting closer.''
While Thigpen's been productive in the spread offense that coordinator Chan Gailey has constructed on the run to exploit his skills, Buffalo quarterback Trent Edwards has been locked in a ruinous slump.
The second-year pro led the offense to 12 touchdowns in the Bills' five wins. But in their last 13 quarters, he's thrown eight interceptions, lost two fumbles and given up a safety.
In the Monday night loss to Cleveland, he threw three quick interceptions.
``I'd say I'm still just as confident as I was,'' Edwards said. ``Obviously, once you make some mistakes, you try to tone it down a bit, you try not to force as many balls, and that's probably why I didn't look as confident, because we were taking as many shots, because of the defenses they were giving us. So that's kind of the reason for that.''
night interceptions are something he cares not to discuss.
``I would greatly appreciate it if we would move on from this subject,'' he said. ``I need to do a good job of moving on from that and continuing putting ourselves in positive positions and positive plays and making better plays.''
Edwards should have plenty of time to collect his thoughts on pass plays. The Chiefs have managed an NFL-low six sacks; the league average is 21.
That's why getting Johnson back is so encouraging. He has 1 1/2 of the team's six sacks.
``It's been rough for us on the sacks,'' said Johnson, who missed two games with a sore hamstring. ``Hopefully I can get in and get a couple of more. They'll come. We just have to keep working. But this has been one of those years, you know?''
 

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