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article imagePhoto Essay: Chiefs dominate in season opener against Jaguars Special

By Kay Mathews     Sep 10, 2013 in Sports
Jacksonville - In Week 1 of the 2013 NFL regular season, the two worst performing teams of the 2012 season faced each other in Jacksonville, Fla. The Kansas City Chiefs easily defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 28-2 in what the local newspaper called a "dismal opener."
At the conclusion of the National Football League's (NFL) 2012 season, the win/loss record of the Chiefs and Jaguars was tied at 2-14, the worst in the NFL. Since that time, both franchises worked to restructure their teams by bringing in new coaches and players and releasing others. Sunday's game in Jacksonville was a test to find out which team had put together a winning combination.
Fans arrived early at the beautiful EverBank Field, which is only minutes away from an equally beautiful downtown Jacksonville.
Fans arriving at EverBank Field with part of Jacksonville skyline in the background.  Jacksonville  ...
Fans arriving at EverBank Field with part of Jacksonville skyline in the background. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
Few of the clouds seen over downtown Jacksonville made their way to EverBank Field. About an hour before the 1 p.m. kickoff, the temperature hovered around 90 degrees and with humidity felt closer to 100 degrees.
EverBank Field about an hour before Chiefs v. Jaguars kickoff.  Jacksonville  Fla.  9/8/13
EverBank Field about an hour before Chiefs v. Jaguars kickoff. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
By the time the National Anthem was being sung, fans wearing the home team's colors of black, gold, and teal took up many of the 67,246 seats; and, many clusters and dots of fans wearing red and yellow attire could be seen across the stadium.
 Rockets  were launched during the singing of the National Anthem.  Jacksonville  Fla.  9/8/13
"Rockets" were launched during the singing of the National Anthem. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
File Photo: The U.S. flag was waved during the singing of the National Anthem.  Jacksonville  Fla.  ...
File Photo: The U.S. flag was waved during the singing of the National Anthem. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
Americans were united during the singing of the anthem, but when the teams took to the field for the coin toss, Chiefs fans and Jaguars fans staked out their territory and were ready to root for their team.
Representatives of the Chiefs and Jaguars at mid-field for the coin toss.  Jacksonville  Fla.  9/8/1...
Representatives of the Chiefs and Jaguars at mid-field for the coin toss. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
Only a few minutes into the first quarter, J.T. Thomas, a linebacker for the Jaguars, blocked a punt by Chiefs' punter Dustin Colquitt. The ball rolled out of the end zone, which resulted in a safety. Those two points were the only points scored by the Jaguars.
A 36-yard punt return by Dexter McCluster (22) set in motion the first scoring drive for the Chiefs.
Dexter McCluster (22) returns a punt for 36 yards and signals a first down for the Chiefs.  Jacksonv...
Dexter McCluster (22) returns a punt for 36 yards and signals a first down for the Chiefs. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
Wide receiver Donnie Avery caught a pass from Chiefs QB Alex Smith and took it in for a touchdown. Ryan Succop's extra point attempt was good, as usual, and the Chiefs took a 7-2 lead.
File photo: Chiefs punter Dustin Colquitt (2) prepares to hold a snap for kicker Ryan Succop (6) -  ...
File photo: Chiefs punter Dustin Colquitt (2) prepares to hold a snap for kicker Ryan Succop (6) - Jacksonville, Florida - 9/8/13.
Kansas City Chiefs' fans, and, full disclosure, this reporter is one, are acutely aware that the top scorer for the Chiefs in 2012 was Ryan Succop (6). Succop kicked 28 field goals and 17 extra points for a total of 101 points for the Chiefs, out of 211 total points in 2012. It was, therefore, exciting to see the Chiefs score a touchdown followed by an extra point by Succop, instead of, as in the past, relying on Succop for field goal points.
With less than two minutes left in the first quarter, the Chiefs' left cornerback, Brandon Flowers, intercepted a throw by Jaguars QB Blaine Gabbert and ran it back for 36 yards. The Chiefs were in excellent field position, which resulted in another touchdown and extra point. Junior Hemingway caught a short pass from Smith and scored.
The Kansas City Chiefs in excellent field position and a touchdown was scored shortly thereafter.  J...
The Kansas City Chiefs in excellent field position and a touchdown was scored shortly thereafter. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
Going into the second quarter, the Chiefs were ahead 14-2, but that score didn't stay that way too long. A 21-yard pass by Chiefs QB Alex Smith to McCluster put the Chiefs on a 57-yard scoring drive that resulted in a touchdown run by running back Jamaal Charles (25). The Chiefs led 21-2.
Chiefs Quarterback Alex Smith (11) practices throwing the ball during warm-up.  Smith completed 21/3...
Chiefs Quarterback Alex Smith (11) practices throwing the ball during warm-up. Smith completed 21/34 passes during the game for 173 total yards and two TDs. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
The score remained 21-2 in the third quarter, but early in the fourth quarter Chiefs defensive linebacker Tamba Hali had a pick-6. Hali intercepted a pass by Gabbert and ran it back ten yards for a touchdown. At the 12:51 mark in the fourth quarter, the Chiefs led 28-2. It was at that point that Jacksonville Jaguars fans left EverBank Field in droves, as seen in the photograph here, and their departure had little to do, it seemed, with the high temperatures. The group of Chiefs fans I was sitting with at this point in the game [there were lots of empty seats to choose from due to Jaguars fans leaving] began saying "Buh-bye. Buh-bye" as in the SNL skit.
The only other newsworthy developments in the fourth quarter concerned injuries. Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles (25) left the game due, reportedly, to a quadriceps injury. Quarterback Blaine Gabbert left the game due to an injury to his right hand, which "needed 15 stitches after he hit it on an opponent’s face-mask" The Florida Times-Union reports.
Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles (25) leaves the game under his own power.  Jacksonville  Fla.  9/...
Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles (25) leaves the game under his own power. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
Gabbert was seeing a lot of opponents' face masks during the game. He was often pressured by the Chiefs defense and, at the end of the day, he was sacked six times by the Chiefs.
Jaguars QB Gabbert gets off a pass amid pressure from Chiefs defense.  Jacksonville  Fla.  9/8/13
Jaguars QB Gabbert gets off a pass amid pressure from Chiefs defense. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
One of six times Jacksonville s QB Blaine Gabbert (11) was sacked by the Chiefs.  Jacksonville  Fla....
One of six times Jacksonville's QB Blaine Gabbert (11) was sacked by the Chiefs. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
Jaguars QB Gabbert sacked again by Chiefs.  Jacksonville  Fla.  9/8/13
Jaguars QB Gabbert sacked again by Chiefs. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
Kansas City Chiefs fans stayed until the game's end, and were thrilled to see the Chiefs dominate against the Jaguars in the season opener.
Chiefs fan thrilled with victory over Jaguars.  Jacksonville  Fla.  9/8/13
Chiefs fan thrilled with victory over Jaguars. Jacksonville, Fla. 9/8/13
The next morning, September 9, The Florida Times-Union headline read: "Battered, beaten in dismal opener...Gabbert, offense have miserable day in loss."
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