The Top 5 Dramatic Matches Between Chiefs vs Raiders
Out of all of the rivalries in the NFL, there aren’t many that measure up to the rivalry between the Kansas City Chiefs and Las Vegas Raiders. Whether the Raiders have been located in Oakland, Los Angeles or their new home in Las Vegas, Chiefs vs. Raiders history has been filled with incredible games. Some of them have been defensive slugfests, others have been high-scoring shootouts, and some games have been filled with literal fights. But anyone who’s ever bought Chiefs vs. Raiders tickets knows that games between these AFC West rivals are almost always contentious and compelling. That’s why we thought the best way to honor this rivalry was to look back at the five most dramatic games ever played between the Chiefs and Raiders.
Chiefs 27, Raiders 23 (2005)
Oddly enough, this game started out as a boring field goal contest in the first half. But things picked up in the second half with the Chiefs scoring back-to-back touchdowns to take a 20-9 lead. But the Raiders struck back with back-to-back touchdowns of their own, with the second one coming with 1:50 left in the game.
At that point, the Raiders led 23-20 and were one defensive stop away from pulling off an upset on the road. But Trent Green and the Kansas City offense put together an incredible two-minute drive with the Arrowhead faithful on the edge of their seats. In the closing seconds, the Chiefs handed the ball to Larry Johnson, who jumped over the pile at the one-yard line for the game-winning touchdown with five seconds left on the clock, lifting Kansas City to a 27-23 win.
Chiefs 23, Raiders 17 (2015)
At one point during the 2015 season, the Chiefs were 1-5 and going nowhere. However, once they started winning, they didn’t stop. However, the 7-8 Raiders made the trip to Arrowhead in Week 17 with a chance to spoil their playoff hopes. Of course, Kansas City jumped out to a 14-0 lead. After that, most teams would have rolled over, but not in this rivalry. The Raiders refused to go down without a fight, scoring ten unanswered points in the second quarter to make it a 14-10 game at halftime.
A safety and a touchdown from the Chiefs in the third quarter gave them a comfortable 23-10 lead. But the Raiders put together an impressive touchdown drive in the fourth quarter and then got the ball back late in the game down 23-17 with a chance to win the game. But the Kansas City defense picked up a sack on the final drive of the game, helping the clock to run out a couple of plays later, giving the Chiefs a 10-game winning streak to close out the regular season and overcome a terrible start to the year.
Raiders 41, Chiefs 38 (1999)
This game meant nothing to the Raiders, who were eliminated from playoff contention the previous week. Meanwhile, the Chiefs could have clinched the AFC West title with a win over a team they beat 37-34 in another classic earlier in the season. A punt return by Tamarick Vanover and a pick-six by James Hasty helped give Kansas City a 17-0 lead, giving the Chiefs confidence that they would get to the playoffs.
But in this rivalry, the Raiders weren’t going to back down. Not only did they get back in the game, they actually took the lead by halftime. The game was pure drama from that point forward. The Chiefs managed to regain the lead, only to see Joe Nedney kick the game-tying field goal with 45 seconds left and then the game-winning field goal in overtime, ruining Kansas City’s season by keeping the Chiefs out of the playoffs.
Chiefs 10, Raiders 6 (1991 AFC Wild Card Round)
There wasn’t much scoring in this game, but that just added to the drama. At any point, the game could have been decided one way or another by a single play. However, both defenses stood on their heads to keep the game close. In the end, Steve DeBerg’s touchdown pass to Fred Jones in the second quarter was the only touchdown of the game. A field goal in the fourth quarter made it a 10-6 game, giving the Chiefs enough of a cushion to secure the win.
Chiefs 17, Raiders 17 (1970)
If we’re being honest, there’s nothing more dramatic than a fight. In that sense, nothing could ever top the 1970 meeting between the Chiefs and Raiders. Kansas City led 17-14 late in the game and was close to running out the clock. That’s when Raiders’ Ben Davidson laid a dirty hit on quarterback Len Dawson, leading to a bench-clearing brawl.
The penalties from the fight negated the first down that Dawson had picked up on the play. That forced the Chiefs to punt the ball, giving the Raiders one more possession. They ended up in field goal range, with George Blanda kicking the game-tying field goal with just eight seconds left. The Chiefs had to settle for the tie, and because it was a tie rather than a Kansas City win, the Raiders edged out the Chiefs for the AFC West title at the end of the season.