Final

Chiefs 13

(4-5, 2-3 away)

49ers 17

(7-2, 4-1 home)

Coverage: CBS

4:15 PM ET, November 10, 2002

 

1 2 3 4 T
KC 3 7 0 313
SF 3 14 0 017

First-half scoring all Niners need to get by

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- From the opening snap to the final play, Julian Peterson was all over Tony Gonzalez -- and everybody else on the San Francisco 49ers' surging defense piled on Priest Holmes.

Allen's Analysis
Eric Allen
Question on the Chiefs: Are they capable of continuing to post these solid defensive efforts?
In their two most recent games (today's loss and a 20-10 win over Oakland), the Chiefs' D has matched up well with two good offenses. The defense seem to be hitting its stride, but now the problem is the offense. KC's offense needs to get back to the explosive form it showed earlier this season.

Question on the 49ers: Is this defense good enough to stop good offenses in the playoffs?
Each week, when I see their numbers, it looks like they're not playing well. The NFC West isn't known for its defense. But in the past two weeks, the Niners' D has limited two of the AFC's most productive offenses (Oakland and Kansas City). So the Niners' D finds a way to get the job done on game day. But only time will tell if they're ready for the playoffs.

Eric Allen played cornerback for 14 NFL seasons with the Eagles, Saints and Raiders.

Garrison Hearst and Kevan Barlow each rushed for a touchdown, and San Francisco bottled up Kansas City's offensive stars as the 49ers beat the Chiefs 17-13 Sunday for their sixth win in seven games.

San Francisco managed just 323 total yards of offense and got shut out in the second half, but the Niners (7-2) grabbed another victory with the defensive precision and quick adjustments they've been lacking most of the year. What's more, they did it against the Chiefs (4-5), who led the league in scoring.

"It was a dominant game,'' 49ers linebacker Derek Smith said. "They struggled, but they struggled because we played good. When you have a performance like that, it's not one player. It's everybody.''

Peterson, the 49ers' fleet-footed third-year linebacker, drew one of the toughest chores: man-to-man coverage of Gonzalez, the Chiefs' All-Pro tight end. No problem, Peterson told his coaches all week long -- and then he backed up his words with the biggest game of his career.

With the help of his teammates, Peterson held Gonzalez to one catch for 6 yards -- and when the Chiefs drove to midfield on their final possession, Peterson ended the threat with an acrobatic deflection of Trent Green's pass to Gonzalez on fourth down.

"I never thought we'd clamp down on their offense like that, but we had a great plan,'' Peterson said. "The guys were giving me a lot of the credit, but I'd say that everybody came together.''

The Niners also held NFL rushing leader Holmes to 51 yards rushing and one reception, though he scored his league-leading 16th touchdown on a 12-yard run in the second quarter.

Niners defensive coordinator Jim Mora figured it was his unit's turn to win one after the offense held the ball for more than 15 straight minutes to end last week's overtime victory over the Raiders. San Francisco did it again on Sunday, holding the ball for more than 38 minutes -- and the defense took care of the rest.

"We couldn't get them off the field,'' Chiefs coach Dick Vermeil said. "They ate up the clock. I'm sure they wanted to do that because of our high-powered offense. We were not high powered today. We were not the best offense in football. We couldn't beat Jones Junior High today.''

The dull game on a wet field at Candlestick Park didn't exactly showcase two of the NFL's top four offenses. The second half was dreadful until the final seconds, with the teams combining for three points and six punts.

After San Francisco chewed up more than five minutes with a drive late in the fourth quarter, Kansas City got the ball back at its 11 with 2 minutes left. The Chiefs moved 52 yards with three long passes to Eddie Kennison in 16 seconds, but the 49ers changed defenses on the fly.

"We moved into a coverage that we haven't played since training camp,'' Mora said. "Our guys were smart enough that when I pulled it out of our backup bag, they knew what I was talking about.''

The change worked. Green got sacked and threw three incomplete passes, with Peterson batting down the clincher.

Still, there were positives for the Chiefs. Kansas City's defense, ranked last in the NFL entering the game, had its way with San Francisco -- particularly in the second half.

Terrell Owens caught seven passes for just 51 yards while Jeff Garcia passed for just 175 yards.

"Our defense kept us in the game,'' Chiefs guard Will Shields said. "Frankly, we haven't always been able to say that this season. Our offense is capable of putting a lot of points up, so if our defense keeps improving, we should be in pretty good shape.''

Kennison caught eight passes for 134 yards for the Chiefs. Green was 15-of-27 for 193 yards.

Barlow made a 6-yard TD run 2:06 before halftime. San Francisco got the ball back and went on another drive, but Garcia's pass was intercepted near the goal line by Eric Warfield as time expired.

Game notes


Holmes, who refused to speak to reporters, set the franchise record with his 14th rushing touchdown of the season. He has scored in seven straight games, tying Marcus Allen's franchise record. ... 49ers OT Derrick Deese wore a microphone during the game. "I was wondering why he was talking a lot more than usual,'' Owens told a team official.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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