'Stud-Ebaker' Key to Kansas City Chiefs Upset over Steelers

Steve SwearenginContributor INovember 23, 2009

KANSAS CITY, MO - AUGUST 29: Andy Studebaker #96 of the Kansas City Chiefs celebrates after he sacked quarterback Seneca Wallace #15 of the Seattle Seahawks during their preseason game at Arrowhead Stadium on August 29, 2009 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

An over-matched Chiefs' team seemingly full of never-heard-ofs, cast-offs, and backups proved more resilient than the Super Bowl Champion Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday. 

One "never-heard-of" was a key figure in the Chiefs 27-24 overtime victory.  Andy Studebaker started his first NFL game yesterday in place of the injured Mike Vrabel.

To say Studebaker was in the right place at the right time might be an understatement.  The first of his two interceptions came off a deflection from Steeler's tight end Heath Miller.  Studebaker was behind Miller on the play and was able to pick off a pass that dropped directly into his lap.

The second interception was a key interception and arguably the key play that sparked the turnaround.

With the Steelers deep in KC territory, Studebaker found himself with 100 yards of open field after a picking off a a Roethlisberger pass in the end zone.  After motoring for 94 yards, it was his lungs and Rashard Mendenhall that got the best of him. 

The Chiefs were only able to get a field goal out of it, but that field goal tied the score 17-17 in the third quarter. 

The end of regulation score was 24-24, in which the Chiefs won the game in overtime off a 61-yard pass to Chris Chambers which led to the winning chip-shot field goal.  Chambers was a new addition to the Chiefs after the Chargers released him a few weeks ago.

Andy Studebaker was another player who didn't have an NFL home when the Chiefs took a chance on him. 

Studebaker was a Division III product from Wheaton College who found himself on the Eagles practice squad in 2008.  The Eagles selected him in the sixth round of the 2008 NFL draft.  The Eagles released him before the start of the 2008 season and the Chiefs signed him in November of 2008.

To this point Studebaker's only NFL action has been primarily on special teams. 

After Sunday's upset win, Studebaker may have found himself a starting linebacker position should Vrabel not make it back into a Chiefs' uniform. 


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