Chiefs put 1-2 punch to work

  • SCOTT M. JOHNSON / Herald Writer
  • Sunday, October 29, 2000 9:00pm
  • Sports

KC’s Grbac and Alexander continue to smoke Seahawks


Herald Writer

SEATTLE — Forget Montana-to-Rice.

If the Kansas City Chiefs could play this Seattle Seahawks defense every week, the NFL’s greatest passing combination of all time would probably include Elvis Grbac and Derrick Alexander.

In two games against Seattle this season, Grbac and Alexander have connected nine times for 290 yards and three touchdowns.

"Derrick Alexander is a very good receiver," Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren said. "They don’t just complete long passes against us. That is part of the thing they do very well."

Alexander and Grbac have put up good numbers this season, but nothing like what they have done against the Seahawks.

Alexander’s yards-per-catch average against Seattle is 32.2, more than double his average in the Chiefs’ other six games.

Grbac has completed 38 of 62 passes for 598 yards and five touchdowns in two meetings with Seattle. Against the rest of the NFL, he averages 233 yards and 2.3 touchdowns per game.

"They’re doing a good job this year," said Seattle cornerback Shawn Springs, who was the victim of one of the Grbac-to-Alexander touchdowns Sunday. "That’s what it boils down to."

On the negative side, Grbac threw three interceptions Sunday — one less than he had in the Chiefs’ previous seven games.

  • Running Watters: For a team that prides itself on youth, especially on offense, the Seahawks have sure had to rely on their veteran running back a lot this season.

    Sunday was no exception, as 31-year-old Ricky Watters ran for 90 yards and added 38 more in pass receptions, including a touchdown catch.

    "He’s running as hard as I’ve ever seen him run," tight end Christian Fauria said. "The guy just doesn’t quit. He’s really taken the offense by the reins. I can’t say enough about him. He’s a Pro Bowl player, and he’s playing like it."

    While a lack of carries has limited Watters to only one 100-plus-yard game this year, he has surpassed 90 rushing yards on four other occasions.

    "He has certainly been our offensive MVP," quarterback Jon Kitna said.

  • Not all bad: Watters’ performance wasn’t the only highlight for Seattle.

    Defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy notched his first sack in 12 games — and his first of the season — while tight end Christian Fauria caught his first touchdown pass since Nov. 15, 1998. In addition, safety Jay Bellamy recorded his first two-interception game since 1998.

    Return man Charlie Rogers almost broke his first touchdown of the season in the fourth quarter, but got tackled at the Kansas City 24 after a 41-yard punt return that set up Seattle’s last touchdown of the game.

    Speaking of special teams, kicker Rian Lindell hit a career-long 50-yarder in the first quarter.

  • You again? Kitna made his sixth start and eighth appearance of the season Sunday while starter Brock Huard rested a concussion.

    Kitna had a less-than-spectacular performance, completing 26 of 42 passes for 224 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions. Unlike his last contest against the Chiefs, he took some chances downfield. One resulted in an interception, while another attempted deep pass to Sean Dawkins on a fly pattern was nearly picked off.

    "He did some things pretty well, some things he’s disappointed in," Holmgren said. "Jon, bless his heart, wants to make every play. He tries to make something happen when there’s nothing there. He should just throw it away or do whatever. He’s just trying too hard, almost. And as a result, things happen.

    "He did some good things today, brought us back in the second half, kept us close. It was kind of like he did in the first ball game."

    The last time Kitna faced Kansas City, he was benched afterward. Huard took over as starter, but got knocked out of last week’s game due to a concussion.

    Huard was in uniform and was designated the Seahawks’ emergency quarterback Sunday, but only as a formality. Had Kitna and backup Matt Lytle gone down with injuries, punter Jeff Feagles probably would have taken over behind center.

  • Quick slants: In addition to defensive end Eric Hicks, who is expected to miss up to six weeks with a knee injury, the Chiefs played without rookie wideout Sylvester Morris (bruised shoulder). … Seahawks defensive tackle Antonio Cochran did not play, meaning Riddick Parker and Cortez Kennedy were on the field for almost all of Seattle’s defensive plays. In nickel situations, defensive end Lamar King would slide inside and give Parker or Kennedy a breather. … Holmgren had never lost five in a row until this season. … The last time Seattle opened a season 2-7 was 1981, when it went on to finish 6-10. The 2-14 Seahawks of 1992 opened the season 1-8. … Kansas City quarterback Warren Moon, who played at the University of Washington and spent two seasons with the Seahawks, visited Husky Stadium for the final time Sunday, but did not play. He announced during training camp that this will be his final season.
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