The Chiefs got back in the win column on Monday night with a victory over the AFC East-leading Bills. Let’s take a look at some of the things that stood out from Monday’s game.
The Chiefs running game was dominant from the first second Clyde Edwards-Helaire touched the ball. The rookie recorded 26 carries for 161 yards, with his longest run going for 31 yards. Not only was Edwards-Helaire productive running the ball, Darrel Williams and Darwin Thompson both had positive nights carrying the football. Williams recorded six carries for 26 yards and a touchdown, while Thompson recorded three carries for 17 yards. The Chiefs offense recorded 245 rushing yards which is the most by an offense in under eight seasons Reid has been with the Chiefs.
The run game would not have been possible if it weren’t for outstanding performances from the offensive line. Daniel Kilgore and Nick Allegretti performed way above anyone’s expectations with Kelechi Osemele out and Mitchell Schwartz leaving the game early.
The offensive line dominated consistently throughout the game, which really crafted the tempo for the Chiefs offense. As made evident in the game against the Raiders, our passing playbook became too limited. After a strong rushing and offensive line performance, it opened the playbook up for Kelce to record five receptions for 65 yards and two touchdowns, while also allowing both he and Demarcus Robinson to make crucial catches to keep the Chiefs chances for a win alive.
The Chiefs offense is used to scoring, but when forced to punt Tommy Townsend, the rookie out of Florida, has really showed up. He had two punts in the game against the Bills for 80 yards and one inside the 20.
The defense started the game a little slow by letting Josh Allen have his way rushing. It caused problems during the first half, but fortunately, the defense tightened up in the second half, allowing the Chiefs to play the game their way.
The tight defense was evident especially at the end of the third quarter on a crucial 3rd and 1 for the Bills. Chris Jones was aware the time was running out and the Bills were trying to draw the Chiefs defense off. Jones alerted the defense and allowed us to get the big 3rd down stop in the 4th quarter.
The Chiefs defense in the first half could not stop the run game, which was nothing but beneficial to the Bills. They controlled the tempo, which was crucial because the weather made the passing game riskier. When the Bills offense decided to take risks downfield they were able to convert consistently off of penalties or lazy one on one coverage. The Bills picked on Charvarius Ward all game and he simply didn’t stand up to the challenge.
Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes have a special relationship with timeouts. With time running out in the second quarter and the Chiefs up three with plenty of timeouts, they seemed like they were in a good position to get some points on the board. Edwards-Helaire picked up a good chunk of yards, but the Chiefs didn’t call a timeout which ran way too much time off the clock. The Chiefs offense loves to keep defenses off guard by getting to the line quickly but no timeout in that spot almost blew a chance for the Chiefs to score (Kelce eventually fumbled and Chiefs lost possession).
Mother nature was not on anyone’s side with a consistent downfall throughout the game. It caused some missed throws by both Mahomes and Allen.
The Chiefs defense got a big stop by pushing Josh Allen out of bounds, but the referees granted the Bills the first down. There was no challenge by Reid and initially, it seemed minuscule, but the Bills offense pushed down the field and picked up three points, allowing them to control the tempo in the first half. Potentially the game could have been gone differently had the Chiefs threw the challenge flag.
Butker missed his fourth extra point this season. Butker is still one of the best kickers in the NFL but he must tighten up on the routine kicks. He did show his strength on his two field goals and fortunately the extra point was never an issue on the scoreboard.
There is an argument that the referees were not helping the Chiefs, but there is still no excuse for the amount of penalties the Chiefs were found guilty for. There were a few plays, like a hold by Allegretti that were clearly not illegal, but some hands to the face and defensive pass interferences put The Chiefs in bad spots.