KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Romeo Crennel stood dripping wet on the sideline, a water cooler having been dumped over his head. Kyle Orton’s jersey was covered in grass stains as he took one last snap from center.
The Kansas City Chiefs had a new coach Sunday. They had a new quarterback, too.
They looked like a whole new team.
Orton threw for 299 yards to outduel Aaron Rodgers, and the Chiefs rallied behind Crennel for a shocking 19-14 victory over Green Bay on Sunday that ended the Packers’ 19-game winning streak and bid for a perfect season.
“We played the way I’d like the Chiefs to play all the time,” Crennel said.
It was the Packers’ first loss since Dec. 19, 2010, and kept them from securing home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. Green Bay can still wrap it up in its final two games against Detroit and Chicago, but no longer with the pressure of the NFL’s second-longest winning streak and the chance to become the second team in NFL history to win a Super Bowl with a perfect record.
Rodgers was 17-for-35 passing for 235 yards and a touchdown, and he also scampered 8 yards for another score with 2:12 left. But the Packers were unable to recover the onside kick, and Kansas City picked up a couple of first downs to secure the victory.
“The Chiefs had a good plan today,” said Rodgers, who quickly brushed aside the ending to the Packers’ remarkable win streak. “The next step is the No. 1 seed in the playoffs.”
Ryan Succop kicked four field goals for Kansas City, which had lost five of its previous six games and fired coach Todd Haley a week ago. Jackie Battle added a short touchdown plunge with 4:53 left in the game, points that came in handy when Rodgers led one last scoring drive.
“That’s about as much fun as I’ve ever had on a football field,” said Orton, who was claimed off waivers from Denver a few weeks ago but had played one snap before hurting the index finger on his throwing hand. Orton was finally healthy enough to make the start in place of Tyler Palko, who had started the previous four games after Matt Cassel went down with a season-ending injury.
“It wasn’t one guy or one coach,” Orton said. “It was a team win, everybody fighting together.”
The Packers marched down field in the closing minutes, and Rodgers showed his moxie by scampering around the end for a touchdown that made it 19-14. But the onside kick ended up in the Chiefs’ hands, and they were able to pound out a couple first downs to secure the upset.
Green Bay came into the game averaging nearly 36 points, but was held to its lowest total since beating the Chicago Bears 10-3 in Week 17 last year.
“We set the tone on both sides of the ball,” Chiefs linebacker Derrick Johnson said.
“If you’re better on that given Sunday, you’ll get the win.”