Last Saturday, all of America was exposed to something that Kansas Citians have known about for years: the Kansas City Sports Curse.
How else do you explain the Chiefs going from having a 28 point lead, to losing by one point? It’s simple really; we as a fan base are cursed. If this were baseball, we would be the Chicago Cubs and pre-2004 Boston Red Sox (and the Royals). If this were hockey, we would be the Toronto Maple Leafs and if this were basketball we would be the Clippers, Warriors and Knicks rolled into one historically losing package.
Our curse is often overshadowed by fellow Midwestern city Cleveland’s, but trust me, the Kansas City Curse is every bit as real as theirs.
I’ve been a Chiefs fan my entire life and I witnessed firsthand all eight of our consecutive losses in the playoffs (an NFL record, mind you). If I had to choose an order to my top cursed moments, last Saturday’s debacle in Indianapolis is Number 1, (congratulations Lin Elliot for finally moving down to Number 2).
This game started off with Jamaal Charles, one of the best players period in the NFL, getting concussed within the first three minutes of the game. Seriously, who else has their MVP candidate running back get injured on the first drive of the game?
The Curse is real.
At this point, I had given up all hope and then somehow the rest of the Chiefs rose from the ashes of Jamaal’s burning star crashing down and stepped their game up. We scored on that first drive, but we didn’t stop there. We continued to pile on points, and the Colts uncharacteristically continued to make mistakes.
We were up 31-10 at halftime and I thought, “Maybe we can finally beat The Curse.”
Seriously, I really thought we had a chance. Alex Smith, who we traded to get from San Francisco, was looking like the second coming of Joe Montana, another 49ers castoff we traded for, and the last quarterback to win a playoff game for the Chiefs. In fact, Montana had us one win away from the Super Bowl before he was knocked out of the game — with a concussion, of course.
At 6 years old, I found out the hard way: The Curse is real.
However, this year’s team seemed to be the one destined to break the curse’s stranglehold over Kansas City. I mean, what team can blow a 28 point lead? Well, apparently my team can and did just that.
For some reason, The Curse likes to see Chiefs fans get the slightest glimmer of hope on their faces before it robs us of the ability to smile and have pleasant thoughts for the next few weeks.
When Colts quarterback Andrew Luck picked up a goal line fumble and dove his bearded, lanky form over the bodies of both Chiefs and Colts players alike to score, I knew what the outcome of this game would be, despite us still having the lead.
After that, every other moment of that game seemed to pass by me in a blur of anger, shock and disbelief. When it was all said and done, the Chiefs lost by one point, five starters and one key backup were injured and once again the Colts beat us in the playoffs.
The Curse is real.
One of my favorite things about social media, is I can connect with all of my fellow Chiefs fans at home and nationwide and we can celebrate and suffer (mostly suffer) together. One of my favorite sportswriters, Bill Reiter of Foxsports.com, even retweeted my response to his tweet:
“I was 6 for our last playoff win and I will be 27 next week. I want this win!”
It should come as no surprise to me that we lost this game in the most unrealistic way possible. Seriously, you couldn’t pull that comeback off in a video game, but that doesn’t make it hurt any less. At least this game makes my memory of them losing on my birthday in 2011 slightly less painful.
So as I spend this week wallowing in self-pity after another Chiefs defeat, I guess I should be glad to celebrate my 27th birthday tomorrow, but I want to make one thing perfectly clear:
The Curse is real.