Chiefs not eager to talk about streak

Updated: October 27, 2003, 6:58 PM ET

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Chiefs have only two opponents left on the schedule with winning records. Could this eight-game unbeaten streak carry all the way through the regular season?

Maybe. But the mere mention of the possibility is almost enough to get someone kicked out of an otherwise upbeat locker room.

As they packed up Monday and headed out for a week off, every player knew he had better be braced for excited friends and family to bombard him with speculation about going 16-0.

"You try not to answer," said cornerback Eric Warfield, who had two of Kansas City's five interceptions in Sunday night's 38-5 pounding of Buffalo.

"You try to explain to people how you try to take it one week at a time. They think you're just being modest. And in a way you are, but you have to take it one week at a time."

The Chiefs, the only unbeaten team left in the NFL, are off the week and play again at home on Nov. 9, against Cleveland (3-5). A trip to the surprising Cincinnati Bengals (3-4) follows on Nov. 16. Then their old archrival Oakland Raiders (2-5) come to Arrowhead Stadium, followed by a trip to San Diego (1-5).

Win all those, and they're 12-0 going to Denver (5-3), which is now quarterback-challenged and a loser in three of its last four games.

The Detroit Lions (1-6) and Chicago Bears (2-5) are in Kansas City to end the regular season sandwiched between a trip to Minnesota (6-1), whose loss on Sunday left the Chiefs the NFL's lone unbeaten.

"I guess I'm ready to give everybody the normal cliches," defensive end Eric Hicks said. "We're going to work hard, we're going to keep on taking it a game at a time, we're going to keep trucking. But we know we have a long, long way to go to get to where we want to be."

One key to their team-record winning streak has been injuries. There just haven't been any.

Since the season began with a 27-14 victory over San Diego on Sept. 7, not one starter has missed even one game. In addition, running back Priest Holmes seems almost 100 percent following offseason hip surgery that had him on crutches in the spring.

Scoring three touchdowns against the Bills, Holmes looked sharper and quicker than he had all year.

In appreciation of this bit of good luck, coach Dick Vermeil surprised trainer Dave Kendall and his staff with a game ball on Sunday night.

"Those guys work hard, they're in here at 6 in the morning and leave at 7 at night, if not later," Vermeil said. "The least we can do is show our respect for what they do."

A few players wished they could just skip the bye week and not take a chance on losing the momentum that seemed to crest with the dominating victory over Buffalo.

"I don't want to think it's unfortunate that we have a bye week because it's good to have a rest," Warfield said. "But we're on a roll. It would be good if we could just continue playing."

Vermeil also gave his unbeaten players an extra reward and canceled plans to have them come in for meetings all day on Wednesday. Instead, everybody is free until they report to work next Monday.

Giving a team an entire week off is something Vermeil's never done in his coaching career. But he's never been 8-0, either.

"They conned me out of the Wednesday work," he said with a grin. "But I trust them to do what they know they should do. It's the first time I've done it. But I'm enjoying doing some things for the first time."

This story is from's automated news wire. Wire index