Just a couple of days after the release of top running back Kareem Hunt, the Chiefs were able to gut out a win over the Raiders on Sunday. Things started off slowly at times as Oakland made things very interesting. But the play and leadership of Patrick Mahomes, and a career day from Travis Kelce were enough to grab the team’s tenth win of the season. Let’s get to this Chiefs-Raiders recap.
Mahomes may have had a slow start, but showed his ability to grind out a spectacular performance. He displayed the talent and ability that other signal callers do not possess. There were throws he made on the run that most cannot connect on, even with a perfect pocket.
For example, you had one play in the first half where the Raiders pass rush did everything correctly. Mahomes had to step up into the pocket. Due to the coverage, Mahomes had to hold on to the ball and roll out left. Then, he completed a pass throwing against his body and got it to Kelce for sixteen yards on 3rd and 15.
You also had a pass where Mahomes rolled out right, knowing he had a free play and threw the ball to where only Kelce could snatch it against Reggie Nelson. Even though the call on the field was reversed from a touchdown to a down by contact in the red zone, Mahomes’ fastball was perfectly placed. Right after that play, Mahomes lasered a ball right between two defenders to find Demetrius Harris for a touchdown. That play displayed the arm strength of Mahomes that many people marvel over.
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Lastly, the play that was huge in terms of the outcome came when Mahomes had to roll out again. This time running to his right, Mahomes perfectly placed a subtle, precise lob pass to Kelce to get the Chiefs inside the Raiders ten-yard line.
Mahomes added four more touchdown passes to his total, which gives him 41 on the season. Also, no turnovers is always a plus for the young quarterback. Something that is unbelievably eerie though, Mahomes touchdown to interception ratio is now 41:10 this season through 12 games. That is the exact same touchdown to interception ratio Mahomes had in 12 games in his final season at Texas Tech in 2016. The biggest difference, at Texas Tech his stats didn’t always result in wins.
Kelce Sets Career Highs
The day started off on the wrong foot for Kelce. After making a catch and running for about twenty yards, Kelce fumbled on the first play of the game.
From then on, Kelce was a reliable target for Mahomes in any type of catch that needed to be made. Kelce’s ability to shake and wiggle at the top of his routes and find the right zones to sit in allow for open catches and plenty of YAC. Kelce set career best’s in receptions (12) and receiving yards (168). More importantly, he reached the end zone twice.
Defense Does Just Enough
As good as the Chiefs offense was as the game went on, the Raiders offense had similar amounts of total yards, passing yards, rushing yards, yards per play and time of possession. Oakland even finished better in third-down conversions compared to the Chiefs. It was also a day filled with more penalties, which continues to be a detriment to Kansas City week in and week out. The 33 points by the Raiders, was the most they had scored in over a month and only the second most points they have scored in a game this season. So, if it wasn’t for the three Raider fumbles, who knows what the outcomes would have been.
AFC West Dominance
The Chiefs continue to stifle their division foes. After Sunday’s win, Kansas City has now won in 20 of their last 21 division contests. Overall, the Chiefs have 25 wins against the division under Andy Reid. Reid did that in just 6 seasons at Kansas City. The Chiefs past 25 wins over the division before Reid took 10 seasons for the team to accomplish.
Thank you for reading this Chiefs-Raiders recap. Remember to check out Full Press Coverage throughout the remainder of the NFL season of great football content.