Pete Stoyanovich kicked a 38-yard field goal with three seconds left, giving Kansas City a wild 31-28 victory over Minnesota tonight and boosting the Chiefs into a first-place tie in the AFC West.

Elvis Grbac completed 5 of 6 passes to put Stoyanovich in position for the winning field goal. Kansas City (8-5) has won three straight to catch Seattle, which has lost three in a row.

"Two weeks ago . . . we didn't know what was going on," Stoyanovich said. "Our playoff hopes looked really dim."

Minnesota's Randy Moss, making up for two fourth-quarter fumbles, returned Daniel Pope's punt 64 yards for a touchdown to tie it at 28 with 1 minute 38 seconds left.

With 8:01 to go in a fourth quarter that saw wild momentum swings on both sides, Kansas City's Eric Hicks returned Jeff George's fumble 44 yards for a touchdown to put the Chiefs up 28-21.

The Vikings (7-6), who have lost two in a row after a five-game winning streak, dropped two games behind Tampa Bay in the NFC Central.

The teams exchanged fumbles on consecutive plays deep in Vikings territory before Derrick Thomas sacked George and forced a fumble. Hicks, a 280-pound defensive end, picked it up and outran all pursuers for the Chiefs' first touchdown since the first moments of the second quarter.

Scoring on its first three possessions, Kansas City took a 21-0 lead before George completed his first pass.

But then Robert Tate ran 76 yards for the first touchdown on a kickoff return the Chiefs have surrendered in 10 years.

The Chiefs led 21-7 at that point and all George had done was lose a fumble and get sacked twice. Making things even bleaker for the Vikings, star wide receiver Cris Carter, who had scored six touchdowns in his previous three games, left with an injured ankle.

But George, who entered the game a career 0-5 with 21 sacks against Kansas City, tied it at 21 with an eight-yard touchdown pass to Matthew Hatchette near the end of the second quarter and a 12-yard strike to Moss late in the third.

Following tight end Tony Gonzalez's second touchdown catch 13 seconds into the second quarter, Tate took the ball on the 24 and sailed up the middle. He shook off Carlton Gray on the 50 and ran untouched for Minnesota's first score.

The teams missed medium-range field goals and then in the final minute of the half, faced with fourth and two from the 32, George connected with Moss on a 19-yard pass to the 13.

Two plays later, Hatchette -- who came in for Carter -- beat James Hasty for an eight-yard touchdown catch that made it 21-14.

Jake Reed caught passes for 15 and 18 yards in a 14-play, 74-yard drive, capped by Moss's touchdown catch with 4:34 left in the third.