Chiefs – Raiders Breakdown
The Chiefs took down their divisional rival in an intense MNF matchup. Let’s break it down.
By: Justin Miles
The Chiefs took down the Raiders in a Monday Night Football Classic. The Chiefs went down big early, facing a 17-0 deficit halfway through the second quarter. As the game continued, Kansas City rallied behind 4 touchdowns from Travis Kelce to come back and win 30-29. Let’s break down the team’s performance.
Patrick Mahomes continued his MVP campaign with an astounding performance. He went 29/43 for 292 yards and 4 touchdowns through the air. The Raiders’ defense could not stop Mahomes and he was able to make them pay. An unstoppable performance by the franchise guy and there is no doubt that he is out to send a message this season.
Jerick McKinnon got it going for the run game. His explosive play earned 53 yards off of just 8 carries. Midway through the game, McKinnon was able to keep momentum on the Chiefs side, with big play after big play. He looked to be playing at a different level at certain times and was dominant throughout. Clyde Edwards-Helaire saw little action throughout this one, racking up only 35 yards on 12 total touches. After a hot start, CEH finally came down to earth a little bit. However, you can still expect elite performances from him moving forward. The rookie Isiah Pacheco who has seen an inconsistent snap count, only saw 1 carry today. This is likely the lowest volume he will have all season. He will likely get brought back into the mix moving forward.
We saw some new faces lead the way for the receiving committee Monday night. However, a very familiar face in Travis Kelce had a record-breaking performance. While Kelce caught 7 passes for only 25 yards, he caught 4 touchdown passes! These touchdowns tie for the second most ever by a tight end in a single game. Marquez Valdes-Scantling had his best game this season, catching 6 passes for an impressive 90 yards. Mecole Hardman also had his best game this season managing 73 yards off of 4 catches. These guys were able to take their few targets and turn them into big plays. JuJu Smith-Schuster and rookie Skyy Moore combined for 48 yards off of 5 catches. While no one saw extreme volume in this one, all played significant roles in fighting for the win.
The offensive line started off the season unstoppable, however as the season has progressed they have allowed more and more pressure on Mahomes. They gave up 3 sacks and a few QB hits. While they are still a great unit and perfection is impossible, this group needs to tidy some things up moving forward.
Before we dive into the defense, the penalties must be discussed. Nearly everyone saw the bogus “roughing the passer” called on Chris Jones after forcing a fumble. This call was awful and the league needs to address this moving forward. On that same page as far as penalties go, our defense gave up a couple of huge penalties, particularly from the secondary. While sometimes, pass interference is all you can do against a great receiver like Adams, it is crucial that the entire defense cleans things up moving forward. For the most part, our defense played pretty well. Despite 124 yards and 2 touchdowns, the secondary limited Adams to only 3 catches throughout the game. He was clearly frustrated as he pushed over a camera man while heading into the tunnel after the game. This disgusting act will likely see him receiving a fine along with possibly a suspension.
Darius Harris, who is filling it for the suspended Willie Gay Jr, led the defense through the win. He racked up 10 total tackles, including a tackle for a loss and a sack. He will likely see playing time even after Gay returns. Nick Bolton continued to lead our defense as well, with 9 total tackles. Frank Clark and rookie George Karlaftis were one of the many getting after Carr all night and ended up splitting a sack. While sloppy at times, the defense overall played pretty well. They came up clutch when needed and stayed consistent throughout.
In possibly his last game as the Chiefs starting kicker, Matthew Wright went 1/2 on field goals and 3/3 on PATs. Wright missed a 41-yarder early but later redeemed himself by nailing a 59-yard field goal. Wright’s 59-yard kick broke the record for the longest field goal in Arrowhead history. It is possible that Harrison Butker will make his long awaited return next week, putting an end to the Wright era in KC.
Overall, it was a gritty one but the Chiefs came out on top! They look to clean things up next week as they welcome the Buffalo Bills in what may end up as the game of the year. This next game may likely show the sleight of hand for who is the pick of the litter coming out of the AFC. Tune in next Sunday afternoon, you’re not going to want to miss this one. As always, GO CHIEFS!
Images via: Chiefs.com
Stats via: ESPN.com