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Chiefs slip past Steelers in overtime

The SportsXchange

PITTSBURGH -- Ben Roethlisberger has already proven he can win, leading the Pittsburgh Steelers to two Super Bowl victories.

Alex Smith, on the other hand, has never won a Super Bowl, but the Kansas City Chiefs believe he can return them to prominence after acquiring him from the San Francisco 49ers in an offseason trade.

Both quarterbacks threw their first touchdown passes and played well in their most extensive action of the preseason Saturday night as the Chiefs beat the Steelers 26-20 in overtime at Heinz Field as Rico Richardson caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from Chase Daniel with 8:53 left.

Roethlisberger completed 13 of 19 passes for 106 yards and one touchdown. Smith was 17 of 24 for 158 yards and one score. Both played the entire first half along with the rest of the first-team offenses.

Chiefs' first-year coach Andy Reid was pleased with how Smith performed in what will almost certainly be his most extensive action of the preseason.

"He was accurate and competitive and he managed things well," Reid said. "A lot of those plays, we turned over to him and he put on what thought would work best and he did a pretty good job with that."

Unhappy Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin wasn t in the mood to evaluate the first-team offense s performance.

"I try to secure victory," Tomlin said. "Obviously, I'll analyze this tomorrow, but we come into stadiums to win regardless of what time of the year it is and we didn't do that tonight," Tomlin said. "So I'm not evaluating any portion of it. I'm evaluating the complete body of work. It wasn't good enough."

Kansas City (1-2) forced overtime on Ryan Succop's 38-year field goal with 1:37 remaining in regulation. Pittsburgh (0-3) had gone ahead 20-17 on Shaun Suisham's 27-yard field goal with 11:10 left.

Richardson, a rookie free agent from Jackson State, was the unlikely hero.

"Chase put the ball in the air and I'm thinking 'I better catch it,'" Richardson said with a smile. "It's a great moment for a guy in my situation."

Daniel, the Chiefs' backup quarterback, was 14-of-24 passing for 152 yards and also rushed for a game-high 45 yards on five carries. Dwayne Bowe had six catches for 73 yards and Donnie Avery had six receptions for 54 yards.

The Chiefs tied the game at 17-17 on the longest scoring play possible, a 109-yard kickoff return by rookie Knile Davis with 1:15 reaming in the third quarter. Davis, Kansas City's third-round draft pick from Arkansas, broke a tackle at the 15-yard line, cut to the right sideline at the 30 and outran everyone to the end zone.

"(Special team coordinator Dave) Toub's philosophy is to take it out if you think you have a chance to break one," Davis said of risking a return from nine yards deep in the end zone.

Davis' score came right after the Steelers' third-round draft pick, wide receiver Markus Wheaton, caught a 34-yard touchdown pass from Bruce Gradkowski. The Steelers are hoping Wheaton, an Oregon State product, can take over as a deep threat for Mike Wallace, who left for the Miami Dolphins in free agency in the spring.

"I would say I'm reacting a little bit more now," Wheaton said. "The first game, I made some pretty dumb mistakes. Just being out there, everything was moving so fast. So it kind of has slowed down a little bit. I m more relaxed and playing football."

With Le'Veon Bell (foot) and Isaac Redman (stinger) sidelined, there was no clarity to who might open the season as Pittsburgh's starting running back.

Felix Jones, acquired on Thursday from the Philadelphia Eagles in a trade, had 29 yards on eight carries. Jonathan Dwyer ran for 25 yards in eight attempts and caught a touchdown pass.

"I ve been doing this for a while," Jones said. "I just have a different uniform on. I've still got some things to show the coaches. I have to learn the playbook and go out and practice with the team and get better."

The Steelers' first-round draft pick, linebacker Jarvis Jones, suffered a chest injury in the third quarter while falling on a fumble and did not return.

The Chiefs' Jamaal Charles returned from a foot injury and was limited to just 10 yards on seven carries. He has just 23 yards in the preseason after rushing for 1,509 yards last season.

The Steelers scored on their first two possessions in building a 10-0 by the end of the first quarter.

Suisham kicked a 28-yard field goal to open the scoring and Roethlisberger threw a 13-yard touchdown pass to Dwyer.

Kansas City scored twice late in the half to tie the score at 10-10.

Succop kicked a 19-yard field with 2:57 left and then Smith threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Junior Hemingway with 18 seconds remaining.

Smith set up the field goal by scrambling for 38 yards one play after Tysyn Hartman blocked a 52-yard field goal attempt by Suisham.

Smith then drove the Chiefs 72 yards in eight plays and one minute for the touchdown, aided by a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on Steelers safety Troy Polamalu.

NOTES: Steelers CB Cortez Allen saw his first action of the preseason after missing the first two games while recovering from knee surgery. He is expected to move into the starting lineup this season in place of Keenan Lewis, who signed with New Orleans as a free agent in the offseason. ... Chiefs WR Dexter McCluster and S Quintin Demps both sat out because of illness. Both teams wrap up preseason play Thursday night with the Chiefs at home against Green Bay and Pittsburgh visiting Carolina.
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