Warren Moon rushed one yard for a touchdown and passed two yards to Jamie Williams for another score to enable the Houston Oilers to snap an NFL-record 23-game road losing streak with a 17-16 victory today over the Kansas City Chiefs.
It was Houston's first road triumph since a 9-3 victory over the Cleveland Browns Sept. 13, 1981, and its first victory in 11 games this season. It also ended an overall 11-game losing streak dating back to the 15th game of the 1983 season, when the Oilers beat Cleveland, 34-27.
"We started smelling it with about nine minutes left," Moon said. "Our defense was controlling their offense, and our offense was controlling the ball. It was a matter then of not making any mistakes and letting them get back in it."
"We're not to the point where we're cocky," said wide receiver Tim Smith. "We're 1-10."
Nick Lowery kicked field goals of 31, 38 and 33 yards to give the Chiefs (5-6) a 9-7 lead. But Houston nose tackle Mike Stensrud recovered a fumbled snap from center by quarterback Todd Blackledge at the Oilers' 45 with 1:02 left in the third period.
Moon capitalized on the mistake, driving Houston 55 yards in eight plays for a 14-9 lead with his one-yard score. He scored one play after beating a blitz with a lob pass over the head of cornerback Greg Hill, Smith catching it for a 25-yard gain.
Joe Cooper ended the scoring for the Oilers with a 44-yard field goal with 1:34 left, for a 17-9 lead. That enabled Houston to absorb a four-yard touchdown pass from Blackledge to Henry Marshall with 26 seconds left.
Moon was 19 of 26 passing for 180 yards. Teammate Larry Moriarty had his first NFL 100-yard day, gaining 117 yards on 29 carries.
Houston, ranked last defensively in the league entering the game, sacked Blackledge five times, with Gregg Bingham applying frequent pressure. The Chiefs, one week after an embarrassing 45-0 loss to Seattle, also dropped several passes.