Mahomes shines in Chiefs’ comfortable victory over Jets

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Chiefs quarterback and wide receiver celebrating after their second touchdown against the Jets
After connecting for their second touchdown on the day, quarterback Patrick Mahomes and wide receiver Tyreek Hill celebrated with a piggyback ride. (Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Kansas City exposed the lowly Jets’ defense with the ultimate weapon of Patrick Mahomes’ arm in a 35-9 blowout victory over New York.

After the game, Mahomes talked about New York’s defense and the Chiefs offense, and gave credit to his teammates for making plays when he threw them the ball.

“They were really focused on stopping the run, which they did a good job of doing,” Mahomes said. “The guys were getting open in space, and I was putting the ball in their hands.”

Unlike the past couple of weeks, the Chiefs allowed their half-billion-dollar quarterback to show why he received the luxurious contract during the offseason. In the last two games combined, Mahomes threw for 425 yards and three touchdowns. On Sunday, the quarterback threw for 416 yards and five touchdowns, nearly matching the statistics of his last two games.

Kansas City’s first drive went as expected, and the Chiefs were able to dissect New York’s porous defense with the electric pass game. Mahomes connected with four receivers on the drive, completing all of his five passing attempts, including a 30-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Mecole Hardman. The Jets would take a seven-minute drive and settle for a field goal, reducing Kansas City’s lead 7-3 with a little over four minutes remaining in the first quarter.

On the Chiefs’ next drive, Mahomes had his way with the Jets’ defense again. New York was hyper-focused on Kansas City’s run game throughout the day, holding the Chiefs to 50 yards rushing on the game. However, when playing the Chiefs, it’s nearly impossible to stifle the entire offense. Opposing defensive coordinators must sacrifice one thing in order to stop another. In this game, New York paid the price on the deep ball on multiple plays, including a laser-beam, 36-yard touchdown pass from Mahomes to wideout Tyreek Hill down the seam. Kansas City increased their lead 14-3 after this electrifying play. Just like that, the Jets had played 15 minutes of football with the Chiefs and found themselves down double digits heading into the second quarter. 

New York’s quarterback Sam Darnold was more than happy with taking what the Chiefs’ defense gave him on the Jets’ next drive, completing a number of intermediate passes in order to drive the ball down the field. Nonetheless, Kansas City’s defense adopted a ‘bend but don’t break’ defense during the first half of the game, surrendering a couple field goals in the first half. In order to beat this Chiefs team, teams must keep pace with Kansas City by scoring touchdowns, not field goals. The Jets’ field goals minimized their deficit 14-9 with a few minutes before the halftime whistle.

But again, field goals don’t amount to much when facing the Chiefs, and more importantly, leaving any time on the clock is detrimental to opposing defenses competing against the Chiefs.  The Jets left around three minutes on the clock for the Chiefs to strike again on the next drive. Mahomes, in a two-minute drill, is a death sentence for any defense, especially the Jets, who lack secondary players. Mahomes went six for seven on the drive with 61 yards and a three-yard shovel touchdown pass to superstar tight end Travis Kelce. Kelce had four receptions for 59 yards and a touchdown on the drive. New York attempted another field goal right before half, but the Chiefs blocked the attempt. Kansas City led 21-9 heading into the half.

Air Kelce: The elite tight end caught eight passes for 109 yards and a touchdown as the Chiefs trounced the Jets 35-9 on Sunday. (Chiefs/Chris Donahue)

The third quarter began with multiple scoreless drives. Neither team could gain any traction with their run games, giving the defenses easy outs on long third downs. With two minutes left in the third quarter, the Chiefs solidified their win with a quick touchdown drive that concluded with another long touchdown pass from Mahomes. This time, Mahomes was able to connect with receiver Demarcus Robinson on a 26-yard back-shoulder touchdown, increasing the lead 28-9 late in the third quarter.

The second half seemed to be the cue for the Chiefs offense to hit cruise control, as Kansas City looked to be running through the motions with an overwhelming double-digit lead. However, the Chiefs got one more punch in before the starting lineups would be pulled to preserve players and eliminate any chances of injury. Mahomes and Hill connected for their second touchdown of the day on a 41-yard deep ball. Kansas City increased their lead 35-9, and sent in the backups to take over.

Kansas City’s receiving core had a well-balanced attack as Kelce finished with eight receptions and 109 yards; Hill caught four passes for 98 yards; Hardman completed the game with seven receptions for 96 yards; and Robinson had four catches for 63 yards. Meanwhile, the Chiefs rushing attack was non-existent, as Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Le’Veon Bell combined for 28 yards on 12 total carries. The Chiefs have recently shown they can win in multiple fashions, whether by using Mahomes to air the ball all over the field, or by taking the load off of Mahomes’ shoulders and using the run game and defense to stifle opposing offenses.

The Chiefs improved their record to 7-1 and will look to keep pace with the undefeated Pittsburgh Steelers in the race for the AFC one seed when they host the Carolina Panthers on Nov. 8 at Arrowhead Stadium.

laldpy@mail.umkc.edu

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