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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- San Francisco linebacker Aldon Smith will miss Thursday night's game at St. Louis and perhaps sit out longer, 49ers CEO Jed York said Sunday.

Smith will seek treatment following his arrest Friday for suspicion of driving under the influence and marijuana possession. After Sunday's loss to the Colts, Smith apologized and acknowledged he will get help, but didn't field questions.

"First off, I wanted to apologize to the team, the organization, my family and everybody I let down," he said. "I also wanted to let it be known that this is a problem and it's something that I will get fixed, and that I'll do everything in my power to make sure that this never happens again.

"I also wanted to let everybody know that once again I'm sorry."

Smith started for San Francisco and had five tackles in a 27-7 loss, two days after he was arrested and jailed early Friday morning following an accident in which his truck hit a tree. York defended the organization's decision to play Smith.

"Our opinion is if you're sitting someone down and paying them to sit down when they're going to seek treatment in the future, we didn't feel like that was an appropriate punishment," he said. "We're not trying to circumvent what the NFL will do. This is about making sure that Aldon has the opportunity to work on something, to get better, and he knows that he has our support and hopefully he has everybody's support in something that is going to be very difficult."

York expects Smith to get help, but the 49ers won't interfere.

"I think Aldon is going to take steps on his own," York said. "We're not worried about that."

Smith is a key pass rusher and sacks leader for the 49ers, and coach Jim Harbaugh had said leading up to Sunday that the NFL would decide how to punish the third-year pro, who turns 24 Wednesday. He had a franchise-record 19 1/2 sacks last season, second in the NFL.

When asked about Smith getting help, Harbaugh said "there's a process there we'll apprise you of at the appropriate time."

"It will be indefinite," York said. "There's no timetable."

York said Harbaugh and general manager Trent Baalke handled the situation and communicated with him.

"I think this was the best thing for Aldon," York said. "Again, there's no right answer here. We're very fortunate that nobody got hurt, Aldon included and anybody else. And we want to make sure that Aldon is never in a position like this again."

The league is likely to suspend Smith, but whether that is later this season or next year is unclear. 49ers defensive lineman Demarcus Dobbs was suspended for Week 1 without pay for a violation of the NFL's substance abuse policy that happened last season. Dobbs was arrested last Nov. 30 - his 25th birthday - for suspicion of driving under the influence and possession of marijuana.

Smith has had a rash of run-ins with the law that raised questions about his character.

"It was disappointing, but we support him, and knowing that what he wants to do is not a one-day fix, it's a long-term fix for Aldon," York said. "Aldon is willing to fight for himself and try to make this right, and I will see it through, and I will support him. I will take any shots that anybody wants to direct at the organization. They can direct at me, and I will support Aldon as long as he is willing to work at this and fight to get better."

Earlier this month, a lawsuit was filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court naming Smith by a Northern California man who said he was shot at a party at Smith's house on June 29, 2012.

The players charged a $10 admission and $5 per drink, the lawsuit said. Smith and former 49ers tight end Delanie Walker, 29 were allegedly intoxicated on Smith's balcony when they later fired gunshots in the air while trying to end the party, the lawsuit said.

Before the 2012 home opener last September, Smith was the passenger in a car accident in Santa Clara County in which the driver swerved to avoid hitting a deer. Smith sustained a cut beneath his right eyebrow. He apologized and insisted he had grown up.

The 49ers selected Smith seventh overall in the first round of the 2011 draft out of Missouri. He became an instant impact player like many of the others chosen by Baalke in the past three drafts.

"This was not an easy weekend for us," York said. "Again, I'll support our players as long as they're willing to work toward getting better and being better teammates, better members of the community I believe that Aldon wants to do that, and I will support him and I will stand by him as long as that's what he's willing to do."

Sunday, 22 September 2013 22:27
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ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Sam Bradford and the St. Louis Rams faltered under pressure.

And they still can't stop Bradford's college teammate DeMarco Murray.

Bradford was sacked six times, after none the previous four games going back to last season, and Murray ran for 175 yards with a touchdown on 26 carries and the Dallas Cowboys beat the Rams 31-7 on Sunday.

"We didn't do really, do anything well today," coach Jeff Fisher said. "I did not see this coming. This is a defining moment for us right now. We've got to get past this and get ready for the 49ers."

With a home game Thursday night against the defending NFC champions, St. Louis (1-2) has to correct things in a hurry.

The good part for the Rams is they don't have much time to worry about another lopsided loss against the Cowboys or another breakout performance by Murray against them.

The running back had a Cowboys-franchise record 253 yards rushing as a rookie two years ago in a 34-7 win over the Rams.

"It's a little frustrating. I'm not really sure why he has to do it against us," Bradford said of Murray, his teammate at Oklahoma.

The Rams had only 232 total yards. They were 0 for 12 on third-down conversions until a 9-yard run on the game's last play.

They had a punt return for a touchdown nullified by a penalty and they trailed 24-0 before finally scoring in the third quarter on a fourth-and-goal play from the 4.

It was the second week in a row the Rams trailed by at least three touchdowns before scoring. They lost 31-24 at Atlanta after being down 21-0 in the first half.

"Pretty much, we had a flat start," said receiver Tavon Austin, whose 84-yard punt return in the second quarter was wiped out by a holding penalty.

"We've got to find ourselves right now. Our back is against the wall. We've got to come out and play harder and harder and hopefully get some wins."

Players and coaches held a closed-door meeting in the locker room immediately after the game.

"We have to stick together," defensive end Chris Long said. "Nobody is going to come in here and save the day. It is on us to change things."

Tony Romo threw for 210 yards and three scores for Dallas, and Murray had his first 100-yard game in more than a year.

It started with a 14-yard run on Dallas' first offensive play, and he had plenty of open space on a 36-yarder to start Dallas' second drive to a 10-0 lead late in the first quarter.

Bradford finished 29 of 48 for 240 yards. But he was sacked four times by halftime when the Rams, trying for their first 2-1 start since 2006, had just 18 yards total offense. Murray had 96 by himself and the Cowboys 202 with a 17-0 lead by then.

The Rams then had a turnover on their first play of the second half when Chris Givens fumbled after a 26-yard catch.

Romo threw 2 yards to Dez Bryant for the first Dallas score. He had a pair of 24-yarders in the second half to rookie tight end Gavin Escobar and Dwayne Harris, who bounced back from a fumble on the game's first punt.

When the Rams finally started getting defenders around Murray at the line of scrimmage, Romo found him on the outside for a pair of catches on a drive that ended with a 2-yard run by Murray for a 17-0 lead.

Murray went around the left end before extending the ball over the goal line right on the pylon, and there was no review.

St. Louis avoided the shutout on Bradford's 4-yard pass to Austin Pettis on fourth down late in third quarter after an interception by rookie safety J.J. Wilcox was wiped out by a roughing-the-passer penalty against Jason Hatcher.

The Rams had a chance to stay in the game on their next drive, but Bradford threw behind Givens while Givens on fourth down. Dallas scored three plays later for a 31-7 lead when Romo hit Harris in stride in the back of the end zone.

"You name at it as far as execution errors and we did it today," Bradford said. "In the first half, we just never got anything going, played behind the chains all day. First play (of the second half), turn the ball over. Just things you can't do. Just a very poor performance on our part today."

Sunday, 22 September 2013 22:26
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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — James Franklin threw for 343 yards and two touchdowns, and defensive end Kony Ealy returned an interception 49 yards for a score to lead Missouri past Indiana 45-28 on Saturday night.

The Tigers (3-0) won in Bloomington for the first time since 1953 and ended an eight-game winless streak in this series, though the teams hadn't played since 1992.

Indiana (2-2) was led by Nate Sudfeld, who threw for 229 yards and one TD, but he was picked off three times. The Hoosiers are now off have a bye week before hosting Penn State on Oct. 5.

It was the only regular-season meeting between schools from the Big Ten and SEC, but the highly-anticipated shootout became a one-sided affair after the Hoosiers tied the score at 14 midway through the second quarter.

Franklin broke the tie with his 1-yard TD run. Then 275-pound Ealy leapt up, picked off Sudfeld and scored to make it 28-14.

Indiana never recovered.

On a night the Hoosiers wore their chrome-striped helmets and celebrated the 20-year anniversary of their Independence Bowl team, fans got to see a little bit of everything in the first 30 minutes.

While Franklin and Sudfeld were busy trading scores, each team had a receiver top the 100-yard mark. And during two quarters in which the teams combined for 627 yards, 93 plays, six touchdowns and five turnovers, the two biggest turned out to be a successful fake field goal that eventually led to a Missouri touchdown and Ealy's incredible interception and touchdown trot.

The second half, however, was a different story.

While the Hoosiers struggled to move, Missouri took its time, extended the lead and prevented Indiana from taking advantage of its quick-strike offense.

Missouri, which led 28-14 at the half thanks to Ealy, made it 31-14 on Andrew Baggett's 31-yard field goal late in the third quarter. Franklin then hooked up with L'Damian Washington on a 14-yard TD pass early in the fourth to seal it.

Coach Gary Pinkel won his 93rd game at Missouri, tying Dan Devine for second on the school's all-time victory list.

Indiana did manage to get a 68-yard scoring pass from Tre Roberson to Shane Wynn with 11:24 left in the fourth and Roberson scored on a short run with 10 seconds to go, but the Hoosiers never got a chance to get close.

Franklin finished 32 of 47. Marcus Lucas caught 10 passes for 101 yards, Dorial Green-Beckham had eight catches for 105 yards and a score, and Russell Hansbrough ran 13 times for 104 yards and scored a TD.

Sudfeld was 21 of 39. Cody Latimer had eight catches for 139 yards and a score, while Wynn caught five passes for 90 yards and another TD.

Saturday, 21 September 2013 23:13
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MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Matt Carpenter broke Stan Musial's team record for doubles by a left-handed batter in a season, Lance Lynn won for the first time since early August and the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Milwaukee Brewers 7-2 Saturday night to maintain a two-game lead in the NL Central.

Seeking their first division title since 2009, the Cardinals (91-64) have surged ahead of Pittsburgh (89-66) and Cincinnati (88-67), which dropped three games back with a 4-2 loss in Pittsburgh.

St. Louis lowered its magic number to one for clinching a postseason berth, won for the 12th time in 17 games and improved to 14-4 against the Brewers this year, including 8-1 in Milwaukee.

Carpenter's fifth-inning double was his 54th of the season, one more than Musial's total in 1953.

Lynn (14-10) allowed one run, four hits and four walks in 6 1-3 innings with seven strikeouts. He had been 0-5 with a 5.44 ERA in eight starts since winning at Cincinnati on Aug. 4.

Yovani Gallardo (11-10) gave up two runs and four hits in seven innings and dropped to 1-11 with a 6.46 ERA in 17 career starts against St. Louis.

Matt Adams hit a two-run homer for the second straight night, putting the Cardinals ahead in the first. Davis hit an RBI grounder in the bottom half, but the Cardinals blew open the game in a five-run eighth.

Rob Wooten walked Yadier Molina on a nine-pitch at-bat with the bases loaded, David Freese hit a two-run single and Daniel Descalso added a two-run double against Alfredo Figaro for a 7-1 lead.

Davis doubled in a run in the bottom half against Seth Maness.

NOTES: Brewers players drove through the parking lots and tossed bobbleheads and T-shirts to surprised tailgaters after batting practice, part of an effort to thank fans at the end of a disappointing season. ... Cardinals GM John Mozeliak said that INF-OF Allen Craig's left foot will be re-evaluated at the end of next week. He's missed 16 games since spraining his left foot Sept. 4 at Cincinnati. ... Mozeliak said that team will remain flexible in how it closes games. Edward Mujica's 37 saves leads the club, but his recent struggles force the Cardinals into a closer-by-committee approach. "So, just having somebody labeled our closer right now, we can't do that," the GM said. He added that there still was enough time yet this season to correct the problem.

 
Saturday, 21 September 2013 23:11
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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Patrik Berglund scored a power-play goal in overtime to lead the St. Louis Blues to a 3-2 win over the Dallas Stars on Saturday night.

Berglund collected a rebound of Alex Pietrangelo's blast that bounced off the glass behind the Dallas net. Berglund's first goal gave the Blues their second win over the Stars this preseason.

Pietrangelo tied the game at 2-2 on a power-play goal with 4:41 left in regulation.

Jamie Benn and Alex Chiasson scored for Dallas, which had won two straight. It was Benn's second of the preseason.

The Blues tied the game at 1-1 with 11:30 remaining in the second on Jaden Schwartz's goal. His score ended Dallas goalie Kari Lehtonen's shutout streak at 59:30. Lehtonen stopped 33 shots.

Jake Allen made 22 saves for the Blues.

 
Saturday, 21 September 2013 23:09
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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Valtteri Filppula assisted on three of Tampa Bay's four goals, and the Lightning beat the St. Louis Blues 4-3 on Friday night for their third NHL preseason win in three days.

Artem Sergeev, Brett Connolly, Ondrej Palat and Pierre-Cedric Labrie had goals for the Lightning (3-0), who will host the Florida Panthers on Saturday night.

Ben Bishop, who grew up in St. Louis, and Anders Lindback split time in goal for the Lightning. Bishop stopped 14 of 15 shots. Lindback made 13 saves on 15 shots.

Corey Locke had a goal and assist for the Blues, who were beaten by the Lightning 4-3 in a shootout on Wednesday. Alexander Steen and T.J. Oshie added goals.

Jaroslav Halak made his first preseason start in goal and played the entire game, making 19 saves.

 
Friday, 20 September 2013 23:34
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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Markus Golden had trouble describing what went through his mind during one of the greatest moments of his college career.

But he still remembers how he forced Toledo quarterback Terrance Owens to lose control of the ball before snatching it in the air and sprinting 70 yards for a touchdown.

"I can't sit here and tell you exactly how I felt," the Missouri defensive end said, smiling. "But I know when I got to the end zone and set that ball down and looked at the crowd, it felt good."

His teammates felt good, too.

Golden's score increased the Tigers' lead to 24-9 over Toledo on Sept. 7 and gave Missouri its first defensive score against a Football Bowl Subdivision team since 2008.

It was Missouri's fifth interception of the year, and another by safety Ian Simon left the Tigers (2-0) with just one fewer pick than they had all of last season.

"There's nothing — nothing — in my business that determines winning or losing more than that stat," coach Gary Pinkel said. "Turnovers and turnover margin. There's no stat that comes close to that."

Pinkel said luck may be a factor with the interceptions, which obscure two bend-but-don't-break performances from his defense this season.

After Golden's return, the Rockets got two quick touchdowns to get within a point, but the Tigers stiffened and pitched a shutout in the fourth quarter to win 38-23.

In its opener against Murray State, the team trailed 14-13 after the first quarter before scoring the final 45 points of the game.

Part of the problem lies with the defense's struggles to apply pressure.

Missouri has failed to force a fumble and has three sacks, all against Murray State.

Last year, opponents fumbled 28 times and the Tigers ranked first in the Southeastern Conference with 16 recoveries. The team also had 21 sacks.

"We just want to get as much pressure back there as we can," end Kony Ealy said. "If we can get sacks, that's great. But we're not concentrating mainly on sacks, but just getting turnovers, three-and-outs, getting the ball back to our offense."

Pinkel attributes the issue to quick-throwing quarterbacks, part of a trend in college football. Missouri will face another high-octane attack this week at Indiana (2-1), which leads the Big Ten with 50 points and 571.3 yards per game.

Nothing that the Tigers aren't used to, however.

"I've seen their offense, and honestly, they're no faster than our offense, and we practice against them every day," cornerback E.J. Gaines said. "So the tempo shouldn't be that big of a deal."

While slowing the Hoosiers would be a difficult task on a normal day, Missouri will start without linebacker and last year's leading tackler Andrew Wilson, who is suspended for the first half after being ejected for targeting in the third quarter against Toledo.

The captain described his initial reaction as "shock," having never been forced from a game previously.

Although he has no complaints about how officials applied the rule, Wilson added, "It's not going to change the way I play."

And the Tigers aren't planning to change how they play defense despite the roller coaster ride they've already experienced this season.

The team has still forced a turnover in 32 consecutive games, but statistics aren't discussed in meetings. Rather, coaches concentrate on how players respond to big plays by opponents.

"For the most part, I think our guys have handled that, whatever adversity has come their way, and stiffened up when they've needed to," safeties coach Alex Grinch said. "And in other scenarios we haven't. And we need to do better at that."


 

Friday, 20 September 2013 23:31
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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- San Francisco 49ers All-Pro linebacker Aldon Smith was released from jail Friday after his pickup truck apparently struck a tree and he was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence and marijuana possession, authorities said.

Smith later took to the practice field with his teammates Friday afternoon at team headquarters in Santa Clara. He is scheduled to appear in court on Nov. 4.

Smith declined to comment when reporters asked about his arrest.

Head coach Jim Harbaugh told reporters Friday that he expects that Smith will play Sunday when the Niners host the Indianapolis Colts at Candlestick Park.

"I expect Aldon - like today - he'll be back to work and playing on Sunday," Harbaugh said. "I anticipate that, yes."

Harbaugh said that any potential discipline will likely come from the NFL.

"There will be consequences. There always is," Harbaugh said. "Good or bad, we all have consequences."

Smith, 23, posted $5,250 bail and was released from the Santa Clara County jail late Friday morning, just hours after he was taken into custody by police responding to a single-vehicle crash that involved his truck in San Jose, Santa Clara County Sheriff's Sgt. Kurtis Stenderup said.

San Jose police arrested Smith after officers received a call from a resident about the crash in the city's Silver Creek area around 7 a.m., Sgt. Heather Randol said.

Officers gave Smith breath tests and other tests after his pickup apparently struck a tree, hit a curb and left streak marks on a driveway and sidewalk.

"They conducted an investigation and determined he was under the influence," Randol said about Smith. "He was the only person inside the vehicle."

The linebacker, who helped the 49ers get to the Super Bowl last season, has 37 sacks in 34 career games and was selected to his first Pro Bowl and was an All-Pro last season.

Smith won the team's MVP award last season as he set the Niners' franchise record with 19 1/2 sacks. A first-round draft pick out of Missouri in 2011, Smith also set the team's rookie sack record with 14 that year.

His teammate, Pro Bowl tight end Vernon Davis, said Friday that Smith's arrest caught him by surprise as the team constantly talks about staying out of trouble.

"Some guys listen, some guys don't. You can take the horse to the water, but you can't make him drink. It's all about doing the right thing," Davis said. "I'm sure he'll come around. It's just a matter of time. Hopefully, he'll learn from this situation that he got himself into, and maybe it will come out positive instead of negative."

Smith, who turns 24 on Wednesday, has had other issues with the law as he was also arrested on suspicion of drunken driving in Miami Beach in January 2012.

In addition, he's named in a lawsuit by a Northern California man who said he was shot during a party at Smith's house.

In the suit filed earlier this month in Santa Clara County Superior Court, David Kleczek, an attorney for Ronndale Esporlas, claims that Smith and former 49ers tight end Delanie Walker fired weapons illegally during a party at Smith's San Jose home on June 29, 2012.

The players charged a $10 admission and $5 per drink, the lawsuit said. Smith and Walker, who is also named in the suit, were allegedly intoxicated on Smith's balcony when they later fired gunshots in the air while trying to end the party, the lawsuit said.

Kleczek said they then moved to the driveway where he alleged more shots were fired. Esporlas, 21, was shot twice in the leg while he was "caught in the crossfire between the two groups of people firing gunshots at each other," the lawsuit said.

As a result, Esporlas, "sustained serious, catastrophic and permanent injuries," the lawsuit said. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages.

Attorneys for Smith and Walker, 29, who currently plays for the Tennessee Titans, have said Esporlas "freely and voluntarily exposed himself to all risks of harm" by attending the party.

They say injuries suffered by Esporlas, who was shot in the leg, were not caused by the defendants.

Santa Clara County prosecutors have said they are considering criminal charges.

 
Friday, 20 September 2013 23:29
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MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Carlos Beltran's 10th-inning sacrifice fly lifted St. Louis to a 7-6 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers Friday night and kept the Cardinals in sole possession of first place in the NL Central.

The Cardinals hold a two-game lead over Cincinnati and Pittsburgh. The Reds downed the Pirates 6-5 in 10 innings to move into a tie for second place.

Former Brewers closer John Axford (7-7 ) picked up the win, while Carlos Martinez got his first save of the year for the Cardinals.

Beltran's fly ball to deep right field off Michael Blazek (0-1) scored Kolten Wong, who led off the 10th with a walk.

Matt Adams smacked a towering two-run, ninth-inning home run to give the Cardinals a 6-4 lead, but the Brewers rallied for two runs in the bottom of the frame to tie the game.

Jeff Bianchi hit a lead-off double and later scored on a single by pinch-hitter Logan Schafer. The Brewers added another run on Aramis Ramirez's slow roller off Axford, whom the Cardinals acquired from the Brewers earlier this season. Carlos Gomez grounded into an inning-ending double play to send the game to extra innings.

Adam's blast to right-center field came off Brewers' closer Jim Henderson, who walked Matt Holliday to start the inning.

The Cardinals jumped on Brewers' starter Johnny Hellweg for a run in the first inning on Matt Holliday's single.

Ramirez hit a three-run home run with one out in the Brewers' half of the first off Shelby Miller, who entered the game having given up just three earned runs over 25 innings in four previous starts against the Brewers this season.

Holliday's run-scoring single in the fifth cut the Brewers' lead to 3-2. Ramirez's sacrifice fly in the Brewers' half of the frame allowed Milwaukee to regain a two-run lead.

Matt Carpenter and Beltran connected for back-to-back doubles in the seventh to cut the lead to 4-3. Adams' run-scoring single tied the game.

The Brewers had a chance to regain the lead in their half of the seventh, but Beltran threw out Norichika Aoki at the plate as he tried to score from second on a single by Ramirez.

Hellweg gave up seven hits and two runs over in an erratic five-inning stint. He walked five, struck out one, hit a batter and threw a wild pitch.

Miller surrendered seven hits and four runs in six innings. He walked two and struck out four.

Aoki had four hits, a walk and scored three runs for the Brewers.

NOTES: The Cardinals ran their record to 7-1 at Miller Park this season and 13-4 overall against the Brewers. . Shelby Miller became the first St. Louis rookie pitcher to start 30 games in a season since Rick Ankiel in 2000. . With four strikeouts, Miller passed Harvey Haddix for third place on St. Louis' rookie strikeout list with 166. . St. Louis wraps up its final regular-season road trip with the three-game series in Milwaukee.

Friday, 20 September 2013 23:27
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PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- This was one time Andy Reid didn't mind being a big target.

The man in the bull's-eye so often when he coached in Philadelphia was easy for Chiefs receiver Donnie Avery to find. At the end of Kansas City's 26-16 victory over the Eagles in Reid's homecoming Thursday night, Avery gave Reid a Gatorade shower.

Reid already looked strange decked in all red on the visitors' sideline. Now, he was drenched, too - but smiling, even joking he was doing Gatorade promotions.

"Yeah, it was different," Reid said. "I was on the opposite side of the field than I normally am at. But I can't tell you that I was caught up in that part of it."

The result was similar to what he gave Philadelphia in his 14 years in charge of the Eagles, thanks to a dynamic Chiefs defense that forced five turnovers and sacked a harried Michael Vick five times. Vick even limped off after a late fumble - he said his ankle got rolled, but he was fine - but stayed around to hug Reid following the final play.

"It was great to see the players that are here," Reid admitted. "I had a chance to talk to them after the game."

Kansas City, which has not had a giveaway in opening 3-0, has won one more game already than it did in 2012 - after which it hired Reid days after he was fired on the heels of Philly's 4-12 finish.

"It's important," he said of the fast start, "but there's still a lot of season left. There no time to relax on what you have done."

The usually stoic Reid showed some fire to match his bright red outfit late in the first half when he thought the Chiefs got a bad spot. He came out to the hash mark to yell at the officials, then walked off at halftime still gesturing his displeasure.

That was far more emotion than he displayed when he entered the stadium with the Chiefs just before kickoff. Although the Philly fans gave him a warm ovation, some standing in tribute to the man who won 140 games and six division titles for them, Reid walked briskly along the sideline, never turning his gaze toward the stands.

But he later said he recognized the tribute.

"I appreciate the fans and the support they gave me," he said. "That was kind of them."

He certainly had to like much of what he saw on the field from his defense, particularly linebacker Justin Houston.

It was offensive master Reid's defense and special teams that set the tone and put his team ahead early, silencing the sea of green at the Linc. The Chiefs forced four first-half turnovers and Houston had three of their four sacks in the first half. He had another half-sack to start the second half, off a bad snap to Vick, and he forced Vick to fumble with 1:34 remaining. Houston has 6 1/2 sacks in three games.

"The defense, man - the DBs, the linebackers giving great coverage, the big guys in the middle pushing the pocket," he said. "When they're doing that, it's real easy for me to do my job."

Damaris Johnson's muffed punt return gave Kansas City the ball at the Eagles 8, leading to Ryan Succop's 33-yard field goal for a quick 3-0 lead. Derrick Johnson then deflected Vick's ill-advised throw into the flat and Eric Berry picked it off, going 38 yards with the first interception of the year for the Philly quarterback.

There would be more mistakes as Philadelphia (1-2) lost its eighth straight home game.

"I take full responsibility," Vick said. "I didn't get the offense going. I didn't get the tempo going. We didn't play well by any stretch. We didn't execute at all and we didn't play the way we're capable of."

But after falling behind 10-0, Vick got the Eagles' no-huddle, fast-tempo offense in gear with the longest run of his 12-year career. He burst up the middle, shook off two attempted tackles and sped 61 yards. Two plays later, it was his arm doing the damage. Under a heavy rush, he stood in and led Jason Avant perfectly in the left corner of the end zone for a 22-yard score.

That three-play, 87-yard spurt epitomized the fast-paced offense coach Chip Kelly brought from Oregon in replacing Reid. But Kelly got cute, going for a 2-point conversion on tight end Zach Ertz's run that failed.

The takeaways kept the Chiefs in front. And after Avery turned a short pass into a 51-yard gain thanks to sloppy Eagles tackling, Succop made a 31-yard field goal. He kicked a 34-yarder moments later after another turnover, Sean Smith's interception, for a 16-6 halftime edge.

Avery had a big night, finishing with seven catches for 141 yards.

Alex Henery's 29-yard field goal was the only scoring of a sloppy third quarter, and when Jamaal Charles surged around right end for a 3-yard TD early in the fourth quarter, Reid's return was a rousing success. Not even LeSean McCoy's 41-yard TD run with 11:36 remaining could spoil that.

"This was definitely bigger than coach Reid, and he would be the first to admit that," cornerback Sean Smith said. "This was about us as an organization, as a team, to go out there and be 3-0, which is big in the NFL."

NOTES: The Eagles retired Donovan McNabb's No. 5 jersey at halftime. ... The Chiefs are the fifth team to go 3-0 after losing 14 games or more the previous season. ... Kansas City came into the game tied for the league lead in sacks and now has 15. ... Chiefs LG Jeff Allen injured his groin and CB Brandon Flowers aggravated a knee injury,

--- AP NFL website: HTTP://WWW.PRO32.AP.ORG

© 2013 THE ASSOCIATED PRESS. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. THIS MATERIAL MAY NOT BE PUBLISHED, BROADCAST, REWRITTEN OR REDISTRIBUTED. Learn more about our PRIVACY POLICY and TERMS OF USE.
Friday, 20 September 2013 06:32
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Wainwright's 2-hitter leads Cards past Nats 8-0

Wainwright's 2-hitter leads Cards past Nats 8-0

  WASHINGTON (AP) -- Adam Wainwright threw a two-hitter Thursday night for his seventh career shutout, chipped in at the plate with a double and single, and St. Louis b...

KELLY HURT AS CARDINALS LOSE TO BREWERS 5-1

KELLY HURT AS CARDINALS LOSE TO BREWERS 5-1

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- The St. Louis Cardinals' 5-1 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday may prove more costly than one defeat in the NL Central standings. Cardinals starte...

Cards pitching shuts down Brewers again 6-1

Cards pitching shuts down Brewers again 6-1

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Shelby Miller struck out seven and allowed three hits over six innings, and Mark Ellis had two RBIs in his return from the disabled list to lead the St. Louis ...

Lynn, Cardinals snap Brewers' 9-game win streak

Lynn, Cardinals snap Brewers' 9-game win streak

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- The Milwaukee Brewers' nine-game winning streak was snapped Monday night when Lance Lynn struck out 11 in seven innings and Jon Jay hit a three-run homer for t...

49ERS LINEBACKER ALDON SMITH ARRESTED AT AIRPORT

49ERS LINEBACKER ALDON SMITH ARRESTED AT AIRPORT

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- San Francisco 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith was arrested Sunday at Los Angeles International Airport after authorities said he became belligerent during a sec...

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