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NFL Recap (Seattle-Kansas City)
Posted: Mon October 5, 1998 at 1:42 a.m EDTKANSAS CITY 17, SEATTLE 6
KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Ticker) -- Quarterback Rich Gannon ran for a touchdown and passed for another as the Kansas City Chiefs waited out a 54-minute rain delay before notching a sloppy 17-6 victory over the Seattle Seahawks.
The teams were locked in a 3-3 tie midway through the second quarter when Arrowhead Stadium was hit by a violent storm. Because of lightning in the vicinity and as much as five inches of rain on parts of the field, assistant supervisor of officials Art McNally made the decision to halt the game.
But while the game was delayed, the inevitable was not. The Chiefs went on to defeat Seattle for the seventh straight time and for the 14th time in the last 15 meetings. Kansas City (4-1) has won the last eight meetings at Arrowhead Stadium.
Gannon scored from four yards out with 13 seconds left in the second quarter to put the Chiefs ahead for good, 10-3. After Seattle closed within 10-6 in the third quarter, Gannon helped Kansas City pull away with an 80-yard bomb to Andre Rison with 24 seconds left in the period.
Seattle (3-2) went through three quarterbacks in suffering its second straight loss. Starter Warren Moon was knocked out on the play before the delay with an injury to his ribs and backup John Friesz was replaced by John Kitna in the fourth quarter.
The teams combined for nine turnovers, five by Kansas City.
"Last time we sat in here, I said it was the worst conditions I had ever seen," said Kansas City coach Marty Schottenheimer, referring to a driving rainstorm during the Chiefs' game against San Diego on September 20th. "How little I knew.
"We (both teams) fought our hearts out," he added. "It wasn't always artistic, it was very difficult to move the football for both teams tonight."
Seattle got on the board first with the help of a turnover. On Kansas City's third play from scrimmage, Gannon was hit and fumbled on his own 16-yard line. Seahawks defensive end Phillip Daniels recovered, setting up Todd Peterson's 22-yard field goal 2:55 into the game.
The Chiefs knotted the game on Pete Stoyanovich's 22-yarder with 50 seconds left in the period before the weather and ugly play took over. Seattle's next possession ended when Ricky Watters fumbled early in the second quarter, but Kansas City gave it right back on its next series when Donnell Bennett fumbled.
The teams then traded punts and the Seahawks were headed for another one when Moon was hit by Donnie Edwards and John Browning with just over seven minutes remaining in the half. Following that, McNally, who was sitting upstairs, made the decision to delay.
"We had seen some lightning go across the sky, and in my judgement, the last that we saw was severe enough and too close to the stadium," McNally said. "I felt that it was time to pull everybody out. We cannot take a chance with the safety of the players and the fans in the stands."
On just his second attempt, Friesz was intercepted by cornerback Dale Carter at the Seattle 32. A facemask penalty on Seahawks tight end Deems May moved the ball 15 yards to the 17 and Gannon capped a six-play drive with a four-yard run for a 10-3 lead.
Gannon fumbled again to give Seattle a golden opportunity 3 1/2 minutes into the third quarter. Linebacker Darrin Smith recovered at the Kansas City 7, but the Seahawks lost three yards and had to settle for Peterson's 28-yarder.
"It was a very tough situation for everyone involved," Seattle coach Dennis Erickson said of the weather. "It was very hard to do anything in the first half. In the second half, we had some opportunities. They made plays and we didn't make plays. Obviously it affects everything, but that's no excuse.
Things got worse for Gannon on the next possession, as he lost the ball without even being hit. But the teams again traded fumbles, and after Seattle was forced to punt, Gannon hit Rison on first down from the Kansas City 20. Rison, who had sat out last week's game due to a hamstring injury, raced toward the left corner of the end zone and outran the Seattle secondary for a 17-6 lead.
"In my opinion, it turned the momentum around, especially for me after the way I put the ball on the ground three times," Gannon said. "We actually had another play called when we were in the huddle. The other play came in and it was a read route to Andre and he made a great decision."
Safety Darryl Williams recovered three fumbles for the Seahawks, while James Hasty recovered a fumble and intercepted a pass for the Chiefs.
Gannon was 12-of-19 for 142 yards and Rison caught four passes for 90 yards to move up on a pair of the NFL's all-time receiving lists. He became the 20th player in league history to reach the 9,000-yard mark and passed Charlie Taylor for 13th on the all-time list with 650 receptions.
The teams combined for just 22 first downs, 12 by the Chiefs. Seattle managed just 167 total yards, including just 2.8 per pass attempt.
Seattle coach Dennis Erickson fell to 0-7 against the Chiefs.
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