The Chiefs can beat you in a lot of different ways, but their favorite way is to use Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce, and that’s what they did against Seattle. Mahomes passed for 224 yards, and more than HALF of those yards went to Kelce, who caught six passes for 113 yards. As good as the Chiefs’ offense was, the defense could have been better. The unit shut down Seattle on third down, keeping the Seahawks to just two conversions in 14 attempts. The pass rush also caused serious problems for Geno Smith, who was sacked twice while throwing a nasty interception. After two straight weeks of playing close games, Chiefs fans were likely excited to get a win that concluded early in the fourth quarter.
Mahomes is the legitimate MVP. Can we use a little common sense here? Statistically, visually, fitting the context: No matter how you do the math, the answer is Mahomes. When the Chiefs traded the most explosive receiver in the league, Tyreek Hill, they bet Mahomes would make up the spread, and it was an extremely safe bet. His main running back is Isiah Pacheco. Their top two wide receivers, Juju Smith-Schuster and Márquez Valdez-Scantling, are familiar names to fans, but the steelers and the Packers are two of the best-run organizations in the league, and they were willing to let those two guys go without much of a fight.
Let’s not make this more complicated than it needs to be. Is there anyone out of Philly, or even in Philly: Who would seriously rather have Jalen Hurts than Mahomes? This is not a knock on Hurts! It has been great. “I’d rather have Patrick Mahomes” is not an insult. But we go. Put Mahomes on the Eagles, and they’d still be having the best season of any team. Put Hurts on the Chiefs, and there will be a drop.
Kenneth Walker II
There’s no question Walker isn’t 100%, but he was one of the few offensive bright spots of the day. Walker rushed for 100+ yards on 26 carries and had a much higher ERA when Shane Waldron finally started spamming passes under center instead of shotgun and pistol.
Another week, another big kick comeback. He mishandled a kick later in the game, and oddly enough, that resulted in a long drive that produced Seattle’s only non-junk time points. Just put it on the active list, now!
I counted only one target towards Woolen and it was the deep shot to Justin Watson that broke. He is good. He is very good.
3) Will Patrick Mahomes have to play a postseason game as a member of a road team for the first time in his career?
Mahomes has 11 career playoff starts. Nine have been to Arrowhead Stadium, the other two to the Super Bowl. If the season ended today, Buffalo would be the No. 1 seed in the AFC. Here’s the thing: I don’t expect the Bills to keep the No. 1 spot. I hope the Chiefs earn it.
They’re currently tied with Buffalo at 12-3 for the best record in the conference, but the Bills own the tiebreaker based on a head-to-head win on Oct. 16. With that being said, expect the Bills to lose on January 2. in Cincinnati, thus opening the door for the Chiefs to land the top seed with wins over the Broncos at home and the Raiders on the road.
Around the NFL
The Chargers can clinch a playoff spot with a win Monday night at Indianapolis.
—Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 26, 2022
Why did the Dolphins lose?
Rotations, rotations, rotations and rotations. The Dolphins were getting what they wanted offensively Sunday until running back Raheem Mostert fumbled late in the first half. That allowed the Packers to end the half with a field goal that cut Miami’s lead to seven, 20-13. Tua Tagovailoa’s three consecutive interceptions led to two Packers field goals and the end of the game. Teams that lose the turnover battle more often than not lose the game.
It was the Broncos’ 10th loss in their last 12 games, and they are still 0 for the United States in road games this season, with their only “road” win over the Jacksonville Jaguars at Wembley Stadium in London, when they were designated as the visiting team.
“I think they’re upset about all the losses, we all are,” Broncos coach Nathaniel Hackett said of the meltdown. “Each of us, that is unacceptable, that is not what we do, that is not what we want to do. We went in with the mindset that we were going to win this game, but in the end we weren’t ready. … It was not good, we are all.
“…It always starts with me, without a doubt, that’s embarrassing, I’m embarrassed. That’s not what we do, that’s not what we’ve done all year.”
The GOAT comes in clutch. In a game where neither team could walk away and points were scarce, it all came down to who could execute when it mattered. And with his team’s season possibly on the line, it was Tom Brady who showed his experience and poise under pressure by leading the Buccaneers to victory in the end. After the Cardinals took a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter, classic Brady finally emerged after more than three quarters of mediocre play. Tampa first ran a touchdown drive in less than two minutes to close the gap, and then, after a lucky fumble by the Cardinals, they were able to score again, this time a field goal to tie the game at 16. Then, in overtime, Cardinals QB Trace McSorley couldn’t manufacture more than a first down on the first possession, and Arizona turned the ball over to Brady with plenty of time and a chance to win on any score. Brady didn’t waver, connecting on all six of his passes for 69 yards and setting up kicker Ryan Succop to win with a 40-yard field goal. Neither team played like a winner for most of Sunday’s game, but in overtime Brady showed why he’s still known as the GOAT, engineering a key winning drive to preserve the Buccaneers’ lead in the NFC South and give them the chance to win. secure the division next week.
In Case You Missed It at Arrowhead Pride
Tight end Travis Kelce: It’s almost every week. Every season, Kelce goes for over 100 receiving yards. Against Seattle, most of them came on a drive in the fourth quarter, when the Chiefs essentially put the game out of reach with a touchdown drive. Sure, Kelce had an early catch that he left upfield, and he seemed to blame himself, but that was quickly forgotten as Kelce led all receivers in this game.
Wide Receiver Kadarius Toney: The stats weren’t surprising, but Toney’s presence was felt on the field this week. The road race and quickness were evidence of a player who can be a big factor down the stretch. He scored the first touchdown of the game this week with the little “rush pass” as he weaved his way through traffic on his way to the end zone. That’s one element the Chiefs have been missing.