Chargers vs. Chiefs rating, takeaways: Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce hook up for 3 TDs, including game-winner

Patrick Mahomes as soon as once more pulled a rabbit out of his hat. With simply over 90 seconds to play in regulation and his workforce down by 4, the Chiefs quarterback constructed a 75-yard landing drive that culminated in a 17-yard catch and rating by Travis Kelce, propelling Kansas City to the 30-27 win over the Chargers in Los Angeles.

That game-winning rating got here after the Chargers appeared to ship a demise blow of their very own as Justin Herbert took the LA offense 64 yards down the sphere to recapture their lead with beneath two minutes to play. As has confirmed to be the case throughout Mahomes’ profession, nonetheless, you may’t go away him any time on the clock otherwise you danger falling sufferer to a last-second loss. After the KC rating, Andy Reid’s protection was in a position to slam the door shut as Nick Bolton picked off Herbert with 26 seconds remaining to ice the sport and convey the Chiefs to 8-2 on the season. This win not solely retains Kansas City with a robust first-place place within the AFC West, however continues to have them because the No. 1 seed within the AFC playoff image.

Mahomes completed with 329 yards by way of the air and three touchdowns, all of which went to Kelce. The tight finish was additionally on the receiving finish of six Mahomes completions for 115 yards together with these scores. Running again Isiah Pacheco rushed for 107 yards on 15 carries within the win. On the opposite aspect. Herbert was 23 of 30 passing for 280 yards, two touchdowns and that rating. Joshua Palmer was Herbert’s go-to weapon by way of the air as he completed with 106 yards receiving and two touchdowns. Austin Ekeler rushed for 83 yards and a landing whereas catching each of his targets for 17 yards.

For a extra detailed breakdown of how this sport unfolded, take a look at our takeaways under.

Why the Chiefs gained

Kansas City wanted to get off to a scorching begin within the second half after back-to-back three-and-outs to shut out the second quarter have been sandwiched round a 10-0 run by the Chargers that put them out in entrance by a landing on the break. Coming out for the third, it was the Chiefs protection that was forcing LA to punt the ball away and the KC offense occurring a 10-0 run to reclaim the lead. While that first drive in the end ended with only a subject objective, the Chiefs have been in a position to reestablish their floor assault on this drive as 51 of their 56 whole yards gained have been through the operating sport. That stored the Chargers protection sincere, which then opened issues up for Patrick Mahomes to move for 150 yards and two touchdowns down the stretch.

Pacheco was the primary 100-yard rusher for the Chiefs since Week 4 of final season. If he can proceed to be that a lot of an element on the bottom, that ought to make Kansas City much more harmful than they already have been.

Meanwhile, you may’t speak about this win for the Chiefs with out acknowledging some massive performances from a number of move catchers. With the membership down various starters and/or key contributors to the receiving sport, Travis Kelce continued to be an elite outlet for Mahomes, significantly after they have been in hanging distance of the tip zone. In the fourth quarter alone, Kelce’s two receptions went for a mixed 49 yards and every have been touchdowns that gave the Chiefs the lead. Rookie Skyy Moore additionally made various clutch receptions and completed with 5 catches for 63 yards within the win.

Defensively, the KC protection was in a position to apply stress on Herbert, sacking him 5 occasions.

Why the Chargers misplaced

Los Angeles began the sport off scorching. It took Justin Herbert simply three performs to search out the tip zone, hitting Joshua Palmer for a 50-yard landing. They scored factors on all however one in all their first half drives, however the halftime break proved to be a little bit of a velocity bump for Brandon Staley’s membership. After occurring a 10-0 run to finish the primary half, LA allowed the Chiefs to go on their very own 10-point run as they punted on back-to-back drives to start the third quarter.

When they began to get again right into a rhythm within the third and crossed into Kansas City territory, Herbert accomplished an 11-yard move to Keenan Allen that may have introduced the Chargers to the Chiefs’ 32-yard line however the veteran receiver fumbled the ball away While Jerick McKinnon would give the ball again to the Chargers on the following drive with a fumble of his personal, that squandered a scoring alternative for LA that may have tied the sport at 23 on the very least as they have been in subject objective vary.

The safety round Herbert additionally appeared to fade as this sport went on as 4 of his 5 sacks on the day got here within the second half.

While this can be just a little nit-picky, that Chargers did not do an awesome job of bleeding as a lot clock as they may have earlier than scoring the landing that may give them the 27-23 lead over the Chiefs. After Herbert linked with Allen for the 46-yard move to place LA within the crimson zone, they referred to as two operating performs to get to the 2 minute warning.

Coming out of it, they’d Herbert drop again to move, which was harmful on various completely different fronts because it was deflected on the line of scrimmage and ended up again within the quarterback’s arms. That pressured KC to burn its first trip of the second half. The subsequent play, Herbert linked with Palmer for the rating, however nonetheless left 1:46 left on the clock. With a chip-shot subject objective to pressure OT as the security web, it might have been a smart thought by Staley to not less than pressure the Chiefs to make use of a number of timeouts in order that they did not have it on the following drive as they tried to go and win it.

When it is Patrick Mahomes on the opposite sideline, it’s important to burn as a lot clock as attainable to cut back the chances of what in the end ended up occurring.

Turning level

Have to go together with the game-winning landing drive right here for apparent causes, proper? Kelce was in a position to get a step on Derwin James on a crossing route and glided to the tip zone to provide the Chiefs the 30-27 lead. That rating capped off a methodical 75-yard drive that took simply six performs and 1:15. As we have seen from Mahomes in earlier video games this yr, the quarterback utilized his legs on this drive when the Chargers protection bottled up the passing sport. Of his two rushes on the drive, his 16-yard run simply earlier than the Kelce game-winner was essentially the most impactful. It introduced the Chiefs all the best way to the LA 17-yard line. After an preliminary timeout following the run, KC had a timeout of their pocket and 37 seconds to get into the tip zone. While they solely wanted another play to do it, that run put them in place for a number of straightforward pictures in the event that they wanted it.

Play of the sport

While we will level to various Kelce catches or probably one in all Joshua Palmer’s touchdowns, this 46-yard catch by Keenan Allen was essentially the most jaw-dropping. At the time, it felt like a dagger for the Chiefs because it put Los Angeles contained in the crimson zone after it felt like they have been on the doorstep of punting it away. Prior to that bomb to Allen, Herbert was sacked on back-to-back performs and was going through a third-and-18 state of affairs from the Chargers 38-yard line. That catch utterly flipped the sphere and momentarily put the sport on its head.

Allen, who made his return to motion after lacking a piece of time as a consequence of a hamstring damage, completed with 5 receptions for 94 yards, including that seize.

What’s subsequent

From right here, the Chiefs will head again to Arrowhead Stadium and await the Rams in a Week 12 matchup in Kansas City. As for the Chargers, they will go on the street and tackle the Arizona Cardinals subsequent Sunday at State Farm Stadium.

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