Five things to know from Chiefs-Steelers game

The tone of Antonio Brown’s voice sounded like December even if

the calendar says August.

The Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver was long gone by the time

guys just hoping to survive the first round of roster cuts finished

off Kansas City’s 26-20 overtime win on Saturday night. It didn’t

matter.

Three weeks into the preseason and the Steelers still have a

bagel next to their name in the standings. Even on a night they

didn’t trail until the final play, the result in an otherwise

meaningless game is a problem.

”It wasn’t good enough,” said Brown, who caught three passes

for 61 yards. ”We’ve got a lot of work to do.”

So do the Chiefs, but things were more decidedly upbeat on a

night coach Andy Reid loosened the reins and let quarterback Alex

Smith go to work.

Using the no-huddle offense to generate some rhythm – and

allowed some freedom by Reid to call what he likes – Smith gave

Kansas City’s blah preseason a much-needed dash of adrenaline. A

pair of scoring drives came late in the first half against the

defense that finished tops in the league a year ago.

”I obviously have a lot of trust in him,” Reid said. ”He

didn’t do anything that was disappointing, that’s for sure.”

Here are five things we learned about the Chiefs and

Steelers:

1. THERE’S LIFE IN ALEX SMITH’S LEGS (AND ARM): Banished from

San Francisco after the precocious rise of Colin Kapernick, the

former No. 1 pick started to show he’s getting the hang of Reid’s

West Coast offense.

Working quickly and efficiently, Smith completed 17 of 24 passes

for 158 yards and a touchdown. He even led the Chiefs in rushing

after a 38-yard sprint in the second quarter.

Smith also absorbed a pair of late hits. The first was a

somewhat gentle push by Steelers cornerback Cortez Allen at the end

of Smith’s long run. The other was a punishing shot to the chest

from safety Troy Polamalu, who didn’t have time to let up after

Smith decided to run instead of pass.

1. THERE’S LIFE IN FELIX JONES’ LEGS, TOO: Acquired by the

Steelers in a trade with Philadelphia on Friday, the well-traveled

running back didn’t get in so much as a practice with his new team

before Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin threw Jones into the mix. Jones

returned two kickoffs for 51 yards and rushed for 29 yards on eight

carries.

With co-starters Le’Veon Bell (foot) and Isaac Redman (stinger)

aching and third-down specialist LaRod Stephens-Howling also

nursing a minor knee injury, Jones could quickly work his way into

significant playing time.

”I felt like the coaches were just trying to see where I was at

right now and I felt good at it,” Jones said. ”I felt comfortable

and I felt like I was doing what I was supposed to do.

1. JARVIS JONES SCARES TEAMS, INCLUDING HIS OWN: The rookie

outside linebacker continued to make splash plays. He picked off

Kansas City’s Chase Daniel in the fourth quarter and returned it 22

yards. The 17th overall pick in the draft landed awkwardly on his

chest and shoulder after being tackled. Though Jones walked to the

sideline, he was taken to the hospital after the game as a

precaution with an undisclosed chest injury.

The setback marred an otherwise stellar night from Jones. The

interception marked the third straight game Jones has been involved

in a turnover. He recovered a fumble in the preseason opener

against the New York Giants and forced a fumble last week against

Washington.

1. KNILE DAVIS CAN SCOOT: The rookie third-round running back

might be making it tough for Kansas City’s Dexter McCluster to keep

his job as the team’s primary kick returner. Davis hauled in a

kickoff a couple of feet in front of the end line in the third

quarter, slipped a tackle at the Kansas City 20 and raced down the

sideline for a 109-yard touchdown. Davis had a 79-yard kickoff

return earlier in the preseason.

”I’m just really glad those guys picked up their blocks and I

was able to make something happen and keep us in the game,” Davis

said.

1. DANNY SMITH IS GOING TO SCREAM: The Steelers brought in the

hyperkinetic Smith in the offseason to rejuvenate the special

teams. It hasn’t quite happened yet.

The raspy-voiced coordinator watched Pittsburgh endure two more

gaffes in a sloppy exhibition season. In addition to the 109-yard

return by Davis, Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham saw his 52-yard

field goal attempt in the second quarter get swatted to the turf.

The miscue comes two weeks after the New York Giants blocked a punt

in the preseason opener.

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

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