Raiders vs. Chiefs: 5 Best Games of Their Storied Rivalry
The rivalry has fizzled some since the '60s as the teams have rarely played for something big since that time. However, the blood remains bad as the rivalry has produced plenty of fights and just plain good football games.
As slim as the Raiders' playoff hopes are, they're still playing for something, and it will be against the Chiefs Saturday. This gives me a feeling that Saturday's game may be one of those classics to add to the drama between the two franchises.
Turn the page for a look at some of the best games in this storied rivalry.
2010: Recent Classic
Last year's November 7, contest between the Oakland Raiders and Kansas City Chiefs had to be among the most thrilling for Raiders fans. If there ever were a game worth seeing at the O.co Coliseum, this one had to be it.
After not being able to do anything and going down 10-0 at halftime, Jacoby Ford almost single-handedly brought the Raiders back. It all started with Ford taking the opening second-half kickoff back 94 yards for a touchdown.
Late in the fourth quarter of the game, the Raiders would find themselves down 20-17, and Ford made one of his three great catches for 29 yards to set up the game-tying field goal. Then in overtime, Raiders quarterback Jason Campbell again looked for Ford and found him for 47 yards to set up the game-winning field goal.
It was a thrilling win for Raiders and the birth of a star in Raider Nation.
1986: Old Plunkett
In 1986, the then Los Angeles Raiders went to Kansas City to play the Chiefs, and it wasn't a pretty first half.
With running back Marcus Allen already out with injury, cornerback Mike Haynes went out with a strained calf and safety Van McElroy was ejected in the first half.
The Chiefs wasted no time springing to the advantage of it, jumping out to a 17-point lead. Quarterback Marc Wilson was the starter that day and ended up getting injured on the opening drive of the second half after closing the Chiefs' lead down to 17-14.
In comes 38-year-old Jim Plunkett to engineer two drives—resulting in touchdown and a field goal.
Raiders win the game 24-17.
2000: Modern Classic
In 2000, the Raiders limped into Kansas City for the season finale without injured guard Mo Collins and tackle Lincoln Kennedy. The Raiders were eliminated from the playoffs a week prior to the game while the Chiefs could have secured the AFC West division title with a win.
A win is exactly what the Chiefs were heading for, jumping out to a 17-0 lead behind a Tamarick Vanover punt return and pick six by James Hasty. Behind quarterback Rich Gannon and blocked punt for a touchdown by Kenny Shedd, the Raiders were able to roar back to take a 28-24 lead by halftime.
Both teams came out swinging in the third quarter and the see-saw battle ended up going into overtime. From there, Gannon engineered a drive to set a 33-yard field goal to with the game 41-38, eliminating the Chiefs from the playoffs.
The Raiders were a great spoiler on that day.
The Brawl 1970
I hadn't quite entered the world yet, but I was able to see highlights of the game years later on NFL Films. It's actually one of my favorites because it shows just how much these two teams hate each other.
In 1970, the Chiefs were leading the Raiders 17-14, late in the fourth quarter and appeared to be ready to run out the clock. Chiefs quarterback Len Dawson just got a first down on a quarterback keeper and in comes Raiders' defensive end Ben Davidson to spear him while he's down.
That led Chiefs' receiver Otis Taylor to retaliate, leading to a bench-clearing brawl that resulted in Davidson and being ejected. The off-setting penalties negated the first down, forcing the Chiefs to punt.
The Raiders then put together a drive that resulted in a George Blanda field goal with eight seconds left, forcing a 17-17 tie. The result of this tie was the Raiders winning AFC West over the Chiefs by just one game.
The rules have since changed to the first-down counting before the off-setting penalties.
How many rules have been changed as a result of the Raiders.
1968: The Raiders Go to Their First Super Bowl
This is about the time that the rivalry peaked between the Raiders and the Chiefs. The bad blood from the merger was fresh while the Raiders and Chiefs were actually playing for something in those days.
The Raiders and Chiefs were really playing for something huge in this game. Both teams concluded the 1967 season, went to the playoffs and earned the right to to meet in the AFL title game.
The Chiefs had plenty of star power with Dawson at quarterback, running back Mike Garrett, and Taylor at receiver on offense. On defense, they had tackle Buck Buchanan, corner Fred Williamson, with linebackers Bobby Bell and Willie Lanier.
The Raiders had their own star power with quarterback Daryle "the Mad Bomber" Lamonica, running back Hewitt Dixon, receiver Fred Biletnikoff, center Jim Otto and guard Gene Upshaw on offense.
On defense they had tackle Tom Keating, Davidson at end, linebacker Dan Conners, and of course, corner Willie Brown.
This was set up to be the ultimate matchup, but it never materialized as the Raiders blew the Chiefs out 41-6. It wasn't a competitive game, but it was the greatest game because of what it meant for the Silver and Black.
The Raiders won the AFL Championship—sending them to their first Super Bowl in franchise history.
And there you have it—the best five games of the greatest rivalry in NFL history. It's at least the best five that I've either witnessed or caught on NFL Films of a rivalry that started in the 60s, tapered off in the 90's and looks to be on the way back.
Even though they haven't played for anything since the turn of the century, the thrilling finishes have still been there. It obviously didn't go that way in the first game between the two teams this year, but I'm looking for a thrilling finish on Saturday.
Both Chiefs and Raiders fans should get their popcorn ready and a seatbelt for their couches.
Just win baby!