The Chiefs' strength on offense is their ground game: Hill and Marcus (Methuselah) Allen running behind a corps of superb, ornery linemen. Kansas City is 2-0 in its second season because the offense has played to its strength. In the win over Minnesota, the Chiefs rushed for 202 yards; on Sunday they ran for 182 more. "We lost a few games and were looking for an identity," said center Tim Grunhard. "Two weeks ago we decided, Hey, we're going to move the ball on the ground. That's going to be our identity."
Hill, who has languished in Allen's shadow since being drafted out of Texas A&M in the first round in 1994, had been eager for a chance to establish his own identity. "I have been frustrated," Hill said on Sunday. "But my situation is unique. I'm behind a guy who is going directly to the Hall of Fame when he's finished playing. Marcus will not pass go. He will not collect $200."
On Sunday, however, against the NFL's top-ranked defense, it was Hill, not Allen, who had a monopoly on gaudy statistics. He rushed for 94 yards on 14 carries, ran for two scores and caught a 34-yard pass for another. After the game a reporter mentioned that Hill is 5'9". Huffed Hill, "I'm five-11." That's a reach. But while Hill's height remains in doubt, his moxie does not. Earlier this season he held his own in a fight with tree-sized tackle Trezelle Jenkins. Greg wasn't the instigator, according to his mother, Debborah. "He was walking away, but Trezelle kept pushing him," she says. "He told me, 'Mom, I didn't start it.' "
Debborah flew up from Dallas for last week's game. It was her first trip to Arrowhead this season. She caused a slight commotion as she watched her son perform, but she was only adhering to her custom. When Greg carried the ball in youth league, his mother ran along the sideline. When he played for Carter High in Dallas, she carried on the tradition. "She'd run along in the stands," recalls Greg. "She'd tell everybody, 'Excuse me, excuse me.' "
On Sunday she couldn't stay in her seat. "Everybody cleared a path," says Debborah.
Everywhere you looked on Sunday, someone was clearing a path for a Hill.