Gregorian Chants

Even rare 4-0 start would assure nothing for Chiefs

Updated: 2013-09-28T22:18:35Z

By VAHE GREGORIAN

The Kansas City Star

The resurgent Chiefs are 3-0 for just the eighth time in the 53-year history of the franchise, and they went to the playoffs six of the previous seven times they peeled out this fast.

If they beat the meandering 0-3 New York Giants on Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium, they’ll be 4-0 for just the third time.

But the two 4-0 starts in Chiefs history are a useful reminder that this early season is all very nice and encouraging and exciting, especially after the misery of going 2-14 last season, but that what it actually means in the great scheme of things won’t be known for months yet.

One of those 4-0 teams, the 2003 Chiefs, actually started 9-0 on its way to going 13-3 and losing to the Colts in the playoffs.

But the 1996 Chiefs frittered away their 4-0 opening burst and won only five of their next 12 to finish 9-7 and out of the playoffs.

That history lesson apparently isn’t necessary for these Chiefs, who for starters make no assumptions even about the Giants.

Coach Andy Reid, who knows the Giants well from 14 years of playing them twice a season when he was with the Eagles, recalled them struggling (0-2 in 2007) and going on to win the Super Bowl.

“We’re going to face an angry Giants team,” No. 2 quarterback Chase Daniel said, “and they’re going to want to win the game.”

But it’s what’s seared in this team’s immediate memory that suggests there is little chance of complacency or over-confidence creeping into their efforts.

They may win a bunch more and they may not, but any failings won’t be because they suddenly are making assumptions.

“Not that I’m glad that we’ve lost in the past,” linebacker Derrick Johnson said, “but we don’t take for granted winning.”

In short, it’s easy to stay humble when you’ve had much to be humble about.

Cornerback Dunta Robinson was with Atlanta last season, but he is cognizant of what the past here was like.

“Going 2-14 is still in this team’s mouth,” he said. “And it’s something they don’t want to experience again, so it makes you play even harder.”

Not that they don’t appreciate being 3-0.

“If it was a three-game season, we’d be feeling great right now,” Robinson said, smiling. “But it’s a 16-game season, so even wins you have to put behind you …

“There’s 13 games to go, and you can easily go 3-13. We want to win every game we play, but we don’t bask in it. We put it behind us, and we move on.”

To reach Vahe Gregorian, call 816-234-4868 or send email to vgregorian@kcstar.com.

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