On multiple occasions, Washington seemed content settling for field goals or playing the field position battle, which isn’t typically a recipe for success against the high-scoring Chiefs. Facing third and eight at the Kansas City 27 early in the second quarter, Heinicke threw a short pass underneath to McLaurin for a three-yard gain. With Washington trailing 24-13 early in the fourth quarter, Heinicke somehow avoided a sack near midfield on third and eight, only for Coach Ron Rivera to elect to punt on fourth down.
Defense contains Patrick Mahomes — but only for one half: After Washington allowed 12 passing touchdowns over the previous three weeks, Mahomes seemed poised for a career day in his first appearance against Washington. The Pro Bowl quarterback appeared well on his way after he completed 5 of 6 passes on a 95-yard touchdown drive on the Chiefs’ first possession, but he was mostly dreadful for the remainder of the first half. Washington’s defense sacked Mahomes only once before halftime, but it hit him six times, and that pressure contributed to nine incompletions and a pair of interceptions.
Mahomes, who has thrown more interceptions this season (eight) than he did all of last year (six), figured things out in the second half, leading three consecutive touchdown drives after Kansas City punted on its first possession of the third quarter. He finished 32 for 47 for 397 yards with two touchdowns and scrambled three times for 31 yards.
Turnovers gave Washington a chance: The Chiefs came into the game with 11 giveaways, second most in the league behind the Jaguars, and they continued their generous ways on offense against a Washington defense that had forced only four takeaways through five weeks.
On Kansas City’s second possession, wide receiver Tyreek Hill had a pass deflect off his hands and into the waiting arms of cornerback Kendall Fuller at the Washington 6. Linebacker Cole Holcomb forced a fumble by wide receiver Mecole Hardman in the second quarter, and Mahomes threw his second interception in the final minute of the first half, an ill-advised wobbler that he let go as he was being knocked to the ground. Washington scored only seven points off Kansas City’s three turnovers, none of which resulted in a short field, and took a 13-10 lead into halftime despite being outgained 274-200.
Chiefs’ playmakers showed up in the second half: Hill was questionable for the game with a quadriceps injury but started and had two catches on Kansas City’s opening touchdown drive. The speedy wide receiver spent time on the sideline and the stationary bike in the first half and was held without another catch until he had four, including the go-ahead touchdown, on the Chiefs’ second drive of the third quarter. Hill finished with nine catches for 76 yards.
Despite a similarly quiet first half, Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce finished with eight catches for a game-high 99 yards. He was on the receiving end of a backhanded flip from Mahomes on a third-and-six conversion that led to Darrel Williams’s second rushing touchdown of the game and a 24-13 Chiefs lead early in the fourth quarter.
In a familiar sight, Washington’s defense couldn’t get off the field for much of the day. After converting only 3 of 7 third downs in the first half, Kansas City converted 8 of 10 in the third and fourth quarters.
Read below for highlights from the game.