LANDOVER, Md. -- As the snow swirled at FedEx Field and the rumors increased about the job security of Washington Redskins coach Mike Shanahan, the Kansas City Chiefs broke their three-game losing streak in style with a 45-10 rout Sunday.
Kansas City raced to a 31-point lead barely 20 minutes into the game.
A year after a 2-14 season that included linebacker Jovan Belcher's homicide/suicide, the Chiefs improved to 10-3 with three games left.
The reeling Redskins lost their fifth straight game to fall to 3-10, their fourth double-digit loss season in the last five years. It comes in the wake of a pregame report that Shanahan contemplated quitting because of his unhappiness with owner Dan Snyder even as Washington won the NFC East title in 2012.
Under coach Andy Reid, who was fired by the Philadelphia Eagles after last season following a successful 14-year run, Kansas City came out of the gate by averaging 13 yards on their first four plays of the game. The last was a 13-yard burst by running back Jammal Charles (19 carries, 151 yards) to the Washington 15-yard line. The Redskins held from there, forcing Kansas City to settle for a 33-yard Ryan Succop field goal.
After the Redskins managed one first down, Sav Rocca's punt traveled just 33 yards. Dexter McCluster returned it 57 yards to the Washington 13 and then grabbed an 8-yard pass from quarterback Alex Smith (14 of 20 for 137 yards). The Chiefs caught a break when the officials failed to see the play clock expire on fourth-and-2. Charles picked up the first down and then scored from two yards out on the next play to make it 10-0 just 9:08 into the game.
Running back Alfred Morris ran for a first down and wide receiver Santana Moss made a nifty sideline catch. However, Griffin threw his next pass to linebacker Derrick Johnson, who raced 40 yards with the interception to the Washington 25. Three plays later, wide receiver Dwayne Bowe ran through the tackle attempts of cornerback DeAngelo Hall and safety Bacarri Rambo for a 21-yard touchdown catch. Kansas City led 17-0 with 1:11 left in the quarter.
The second quarter started in similar fashion as McCluster returned the punt 24 yards. Bowe made a sliding catch on the first play. Charles than carried twice for 17 yards before he scored on a 5-yard screen to expand the margin to 24-0. After a defensive touchdown was reversed by replay, McCluster raced 74 yards with another punt return for Kansas City's second touchdown in 1:42.
Washington broke the shutout on a 7-yard touchdown toss from Griffin (12 of 26 for 164 yards) to tight end Logan Paulsen with 1:07 left in the half, but Quintin Demps returned the subsequent kickoff 95 yards to make it 38-7. Washington's Kai Forbath kicked a 50-yard field goal at the end of the half. Chiefs rookie running back Knile Davis' 17-yard touchdown run with 13:37 remaining rounded out the scoring.
Notes: Chiefs LB Tamba Hali's sack of Redskins QB Robert Griffin III that started the second quarter was just the Chiefs' second in their last five games. They recorded two more sacks on Washington's next four plays and finished with six. ... Kirk Cousins relieved Griffin during the fourth quarter. ... Redskins RB Alfred Morris went over the 1,000-yard rushing mark for the second time in his two-year career while Redskins WR Pierre Garcon topped 1,000 receiving yards for the first time during his six seasons. ... Chiefs KR Dexter McCluster, who came in averaging 9.7 yards per punt return, fell just 32 yards shy of LeRoy Irvin's 32-year-old NFL record of 207 yards.