KANSAS CITY (7-4)
Kansas City, Mo.
Today, 1 p.m., CBS
OPENING LINE — Chiefs by 6½
RECORD VS. SPREAD — Denver 3-8; Kansas City 7-4
SERIES RECORD — Chiefs lead 54-47
LAST MEETING — Broncos beat Chiefs 49-29, Nov. 14, 2010
LAST WEEK — Broncos lost to Rams 36-33; Chiefs beat Seahawks 42-24
BRONCOS OFFENSE — OVERALL (8), RUSH (30), PASS (4)
BRONCOS DEFENSE — OVERALL (27), RUSH (30), PASS (20)
CHIEFS OFFENSE — OVERALL (6), RUSH (1), PASS (25)
CHIEFS DEFENSE — OVERALL (18T), RUSH (7), PASS (24)
STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES — Chiefs and Broncos are two of six teams whose records straight up are same as vs. spread. ... Rematch of punting Colquitt brothers, Dustin for KC and Britton for Broncos. ... Sad and turbulent week for Broncos included increased fan dissatisfaction with coach Josh McDaniels, McDaniels and owner Pat Bowlen each getting fined $50,000 for taping incident in London and revelation that WR Kenny McKinley had gambling problem and was deeply in debt when he committed suicide last Sept. 21. ... Will be 800th game in Denver franchise history. ... Kyle Orton leads NFL with 3,370 yards passing and has career-best 96.0 passer rating through 11 games. ... Since smacking Chiefs 49-29 on Nov. 14, Broncos 0-2 and been outscored 71-49; Chiefs 2-0 and outscoring opponents 73-37. ... Chiefs set team record by falling behind 35-0 in first half at Denver last month. ... Both McDaniels and Chiefs’ Todd Haley insist no hard feelings, no big deal in Haley’s finger-pointing refusal to shake hands after Nov. 14 game, for which Haley apologized. ... Chiefs trying to avoid first back-to-back home losses to Broncos since losing four straight 1976-79. ... WR Dwayne Bowe has extended team record with TD catch in seven straight games, could tie for second-longest such streak in NFL since 1970 if he gets one against Broncos. Bowe’s monster November included 37 catches, second in league, and NFL-leading 528 yards receiving and eight TD catches. ... Bowe and RB Jamaal Charles on track to become third 1,000-yard rusher and receiver in team history.
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — It wasn’t long ago that all Dwayne Bowe seemed to be catching was flak.
All the Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver seems to be catching lately is touchdowns.
Hoping to throw a little ice water on the proceedings is Denver’s banged-up secondary.
Safety Brian Dawkins (knee) already is ruled out of Sunday’s game at Kansas City (7-4). So is cornerback Andre Goodman (hip) and possibly safety Darcel McBath (quadriceps).
That means Bowe should see plenty of Champ Bailey, with the cornerback perhaps even shadowing the white-hot target for long stretches. The two have had their battles previously.
Bowe had only one career 100-yard receiving game and hadn’t scored a TD in his first five meetings against Denver (3-8) before exploding for 13 catches, 186 yards and two scores three weeks ago in a 49-29 Broncos win. It’s helped Bowe that Matt Cassel finally has stabilized the quarterback position in Kansas City.
But the receiver’s changed mindset is apparently as important.
“He seems more focused,” Bailey said. “He just seems better prepared than what he has been in the past. He has always had the talent. It’s just going out there and believing it and doing it and being confident in what you’re doing and having a quarterback you’re confident in. He definitely has that now, so that’s what makes him so explosive.”
Last week at Seattle, Bowe joined Jerry Rice and Jimmy Smith as just the third player since 1990 to produce a 13-catch, 170-yard, three-TD performance. He currently stands fifth in the NFL with 885 receiving yards and is tied for sixth in the AFC with 58 catches.
“They’re asking him to do a ton,” Broncos coach Josh McDaniels said. “They’re moving him around a lot and finding ways to get him the ball, because, like many top receivers, now people are doing a lot of things to try and take him away. The difficult part about that is if you’re trying to double-team a receiver and stop a running game, you’re going to run into a lot of problems. You kind of pick your poison.”