DENVER — The Denver Broncos had everything go their way to snap a 16-game losing streak to the Kansas City Chiefs.
Kansas City committed five turnovers, only mustered 275 total yards and 0 touchdowns, were 3 for 10 on third down and 0 for 3 in red zone attempts.
Those key stats led to a 21-9 loss to the Broncos for the Chiefs.
“You miss off an inch in this league and it’s a mile, so it just kills you,” head coach Andy Reid lamented after the loss.
“I take full responsibility for it. I saw things tonight that I haven’t seen before from the guys. That’s my responsibility to make sure they are right and we weren’t right today.”
It wasn’t just those stats, but little things as well.
The Chiefs offense couldn’t execute screens or any short-yardage passing game at a high level like they’re used to. The Chiefs failed to capitalize on the lone turnover and short fields they faced.
Kansas City also held the ball for nine minutes and six seconds in the second half. Denver dominated possession time by seven minutes, which made all the difference.
On their only third-quarter drive, rookie wide receiver Rashee Rice dropped a wide-open pass from quarterback Patrick Mahomes but a Justin Watson catch gave them a first down the next play.
Two plays later, a too many men on the field penalty pushed 2nd and 7 back to 2nd and 12. After an Isiah Pacheco run made it 3rd and 5 late in the third quarter, Mahomes overthrew an open Watson.
On one of the Chiefs’ last drives, Mahomes threw a deep shot to Skyy Moore on fourth down who was open in the end zone, and it went through his hands.
Pressure from the Broncos also plagued Mahomes all day with three sacks and 11 QB hits.
“They did better,” Reid said. “We didn’t execute the way we need to. I gotta go back and look at the things that I called. Not very good.”
“Wasn’t good enough,” Mahomes said. “Obviously the turnovers but just execution in general. They did a good job against us with their defense, but we got to execute at a high enough level when we clearly haven’t done in the two games we played against them.”
The Chiefs defense was on par with how well they’ve performed so far this season.
Denver only managed 240 yards, 114 through the air from QB Russell Wilson, but he scored three TDs on short fields. Running back Javonte Williams led a 153-yard rushing effort with 85 of his own yards.
KC’s defense also got six sacks on Wilson along with eight QB hits.
“This is a team, we know each other’s personnel extremely well. And they came in with something to prove after how the first game went and they came out good. So it was a good job by them,” safety Justin Reid said.
But the Broncos defense had the Chiefs’ number in the first game two weeks ago, just didn’t have the points to back it up.
The Chiefs were 1 for 5 in the red zone in that game, were 4 for 13 on third down, racked up 84 yards in penalties and only managed a single touchdown in the 19-8 win.
Mahomes anticipates teams replicating the Denver defensive blueprint.
“Obviously they’ve seen two out of the last three weeks, the Broncos be able to kind of stifle our offense,” Mahomes said.
“And really just kind of get after us as far as making us execute on the field. And so I’m sure other teams in the league are gonna watch that and we have to prove that we have answers for that. And that’ll be something that I will go back to the film and really try to pay attention to.”