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NFL '97 / WEEK 1 | DENVER 19, KANSAS CITY 3

Broncos Are Not Totally Zoned Out

September 01, 1997|From Associated Press

DENVER — The Denver Broncos, their explosive offense showing more fizzle than fizz, couldn't manage a touchdown until the fourth quarter. The Kansas City Chiefs couldn't manage one at all.

Terrell Davis ran for 101 yards and the game's only touchdown, a 10-yard burst early in the final quarter, and Jason Elam kicked four field goals as the Broncos defeated the Chiefs, 19-3, Sunday.

The Broncos were clinging to a 9-3 lead before Davis' score.

"Getting down there three times and coming away with three field goals, we were getting frustrated, no doubt about it," Davis said. "When you get in the red zone, you want to come away with touchdowns. To get down there and actually put the ball in the end zone was kind of a relief."

Vaughn Hebron returned a kickoff 46 yards to the Kansas City 49-yard-line to set up Davis' touchdown. John Elway hooked up with Ed McCaffrey on a 20-yard pass, and Davis went 10 yards up the middle for the score with 12:55 left.

Elway, shrugging off the ruptured biceps tendon he suffered Aug. 4 and another injury just before the half, completed 17 of 28 passes for 246 yards as the Broncos, who had No. 1 in offense in the NFL last year, opened the season with 378 yards.

Elway had the wind knocked out of him after launching a 78-yard pass to Rod Smith--a throw that traveled 53 yards-- to set up a field goal just before the half. Elway, hit by safety Jerome Woods, lay on the turf, grabbing his right side, but continued to play.

"He got me with an elbow, right in the ribs," Elway said. "Good thing I had rib pads on or he would have broken my ribs. I heard the crowd and knew I had completed the pass, but I didn't care. I just wanted to breathe again."

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