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Chiefs defense comes up big in 30-14 victory over Jaguars

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The Chiefs defense gave up over 500 yards — again — but had five takeaways in the victory

Jacksonville Jaguars v Kansas City Chiefs Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images

Even though they once again gave up over 500 yards, the Kansas City Chiefs defense had five takeaways, and kept the pressure on Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles, leading the way to a 30-14 home win that extended the Chiefs record to 5-0.

Full game stats from NFL.com

First quarter

The Chiefs won the toss and deferred to the second half. The Jaguars faked a handoff on the opening kickoff, but the Chiefs special teams unit wasn’t fooled, and stopped the Jaguars return at the 20-yard line.

After getting a first down with a couple of runs from T.J. Yeldon and a third down reception from Keelan Cole, the Jaguars opening drive stalled with a dropped pass, a bad throw from Blake Bortles and a tackle for loss by the Chiefs Anthony Hitchens. The Jaguars were in no mood to test Tyreek Hill as a punt returner, and punted out of bounds, starting the Chiefs at their 27-yard line.

On their first play from scrimmage, Hill took an end-around for 40 yards, but a holding penalty on Sammy Watkins negated the play. After a short run by Hill and a short reception to Travis Kelce, Patrick Mahomes hit Anthony Sherman for a 15-yard gain.

Now in Jaguars territory, Mahomes found Hunt for seven yards, and then Kelce for 15 — and the Jaguars were called for unnecessary roughness on the play. That gave the Chiefs a new set of downs at the Jaguars 4-yard line — but they’d only need one.

On the next play, Mahomes kept the ball and scored his second rushing touchdown in as many weeks — and the first opening-half touchdown given up by Jacksonville all season — giving the Chiefs a 7-0 lead with 6:39 remaining in the first quarter.

Starting at their own 25 after a touchback, the Jaguars got six yards on a Yeldon run, and then Bortles swung for the fences, hitting D.J. Chark for a 38 yard reception. On the next play, Chris Jones notched his first sack of the season, dropping Bortles for a six-yard loss. Thanks to the sack, after Bortles couldn’t connect on two more deep passes — while under heavy pressure from the Chiefs pass rush — the Jaguars had to punt instead of trying what would have been a 54-yard field goal.

Starting at their own 14, the Chiefs went with a run to Hunt and a reception from Watkins for a first down. After a short rush from Hunt and a deep pass thrown just beyond Kelce’s grasp, the Jaguars blitzed two defensive backs, but Mahomes got the ball off anyway, hitting Spencer Ware for a 13-yard gain.

Second quarter

Three plays later, Mahomes saw Watkins all alone in the Jaguars secondary, and turned it into a 33-yard play, setting up first and goal at the Jaguars 10-yard line. But after a pair of incompletions and a false start penalty called on Chris Conley, on third and 15, Mahomes couldn’t find an open target in the end zone and scrambled to the 4-yard line. With the resulting 22-yard Harrison Butker field goal, the Chiefs led 10-0.

After a touchback, the Jaguars settled down to a short game, getting first downs on short passes and runs — plus a 17-yard gain from Yeldon on third and one from the Chiefs 48. The Jaguars worked their way down the field, reaching the Chiefs 12-yard line. After two rushing plays and an incompletion, the Jaguars decided to go for it from fourth and one at the two-yard line. But Armani Watts broke up the goal line pass to Austin Seferian-Jenkins, and the Jaguars came away empty-handed.

A 13-yard strike to Kelce moved the Chiefs away from their own goal, and another 13-yard reception by Hill — which might have touched the ground — came one play later. The Chiefs wisely rushed to the line to avoid giving the Jaguars a chance to think about challenging the play, but the down was wasted when Damien Williams was stopped for no gain. After a incompletion to Conley, Mahomes’ deep throw to Hill was high, and was intercepted by Tashaun Gipson.

But Mahomes’ first interception of the season — also the first for the Jaguars this year — would not go unavenged. On the next play, Ford — who had been in the offensive backfield consistently from the Jaguars’ opening drive — stripped the ball from Bortles. Breeland Speaks fell on the ball at the Chiefs 49-yard line.

One play later, Mahomes hit Kelce with a short pass that the star tight end turned into a 40-yard gain that gave the Chiefs first and goal at the Jaguars 9-yard line. But the Chiefs couldn’t take full advantage of the opportunity, as Mahomes couldn’t connect on two end zone pass attempts, and was sacked for 15 yards on third down. Butker’s 42-yard field goal gave the Chiefs a 13-0 lead at the two-minute warning.

After the kickoff, the next Jaguars drive ended before it could begin. Trying to set up a screen to Yeldon, Bortles didn’t see Jones, who intercepted the pass and returned it for a Chiefs touchdown — the team’s first defensive score of the season — and the Chiefs led 20-0.

The Jaguars were stopped at their own 14 on the ensuing kickoff, and went back to work with 1:45 remaining in the half. After three short passes, Bortles hit Chark with a 30-yard pass that put the Jaguars at the Chiefs 33. Two plays later — after Bortles’ deep pass to Cole was broken up by Orlando ScandrickDee Ford was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct, and the Jaguars had a fresh set of downs at the Chiefs 10-yard line with 39 seconds remaining in the half.

After Bortles scrambled for seven yards, his pass for Donte Moncrief bounced off the helmet of one of his offensive linemen, and Steven Nelson notched the third takeaway of the half when he intercepted the ball in the end zone, sending the teams to their locker rooms with the Chiefs holding a 20-0 lead — and touching off a tip-drill touchdown celebration.

Third quarter

The skies were clearing as the Chiefs took a touchback to start the second half. After a 14-yard reception to Conley to open the drive, the Chiefs stumbled for the first time in the game. A stuff of Hunt at the line of scrimmage, a pair of incompletions, a holding call on Eric Fisher and a false start called on Mahomes added up to fourth and 25, and Dustin Colquitt had his first punt of the game.

Starting at their 23-yard line, the Jaguars immediately jumped out past midfield when Bortles found Dede Westbrook with a short pass that became a 30-yard gain — but that was all the Jaguars could manage, punting three plays later.

Pinned to their own 2-yard line by Logan Cooke’s punt, the Chiefs moved away from their own goal with a 10-yard pass to Watkins. De’Anthony Thomas became the ninth Chief with a reception in the game with a hard-fought 13-yard catch. Two plays later, Hunt found running room an the sideline after a short throw, and scampered for 24 yards — 15 of which were immediately removed when Hunt was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Now at midfield, Mahomes found Kelce for a 30-yard completion, but that was all the Chiefs could do on the drive. After Ware was stopped for no gain, Mahomes had to throw the ball away on second down, and Jalen Ramsey broke up a deep pass to Hill, which forced Butker’s third field goal of the game. The Chiefs then led 23-0.

The Jaguars finally got on the board on the next drive, moving 75 yards on six plays. A pass to Westbrook for 23 yards and another to Cole good for 32 set up a 14-yard touchdown pass to Yeldon, narrowing the Chiefs lead to 23-7.

But on the extra point attempt, Chris Jones was flagged for unnecessary roughness, and was ejected for a non-football act.

Starting at their own 21 after the ensuing kickoff, the Chiefs answered with a quick drive of their own, featuring short passes to Hill and Watkins, and then a 36-yard completion to Hill that had an additional 15 yards added when Malik Jackson was flagged for roughing the passer. Hunt’s 4-yard rushing touchdown capped off the drive that extended the Chiefs lead to 30-7.

Fourth quarter

On their next drive, the Jaguars got a good start with an 18-yard reception to to Moncrief, and got another first down with an 11-yard catch from Niles Paul. But then Bortles missed three straight passes, and the Jaguars were forced to go for it on fourth and 10 at the Chiefs 46. Former Chiefs tight end James O’Shaughnessy got the call, and fought for extra yardage to convert the first down.

On the next play, Tremon Smith sacked Bortles on a corner blitz, but two plays later, the Jaguars got another first down when Bortles gained four yards on a keeper.

But then Ford again got his hands on Bortles as he released a pass intended for O’Shaughnessy near the goal line. The pass was picked off by Jordan Lucas, who returned it 49 yards on an impressive open-field run.

But two plays later, Mahomes threw his second interception of the game — and the season — when A.J. Bouye picked off a pass at the Jaguars 33-yard line, returning it nine yards.

Facing a short field, the Jaguars were almost stymied immediately when Paul couldn’t stretch a third down catch past the sticks. But Bortles was able to convert on fourth and one with a quarterback sneak. After an incompletion, Bortles was sacked on two consecutive plays; Xavier Williams got his first sack of the season, and then Allen Bailey chased Bortles out of bounds.

But that play proved costly for the Chiefs. Ford was flagged again for unsportsmanlike conduct after taunting Bortles on the sideline, and became the second Chief to be ejected from the game.

After the Jaguars got another first down with a 13-yard pass to Moncrief, the Jaguars again found themselves facing fourth down. Bortles converted the fourth and two with a 21-yard run that just made it into the end zone, narrowing the Chiefs lead to 30-14 with 5:56 remaining in the game.

The Jaguars needed an onside kick, and they got one. Placekicker Josh Lambo recovered his own kick at the Jaguars 48. But Jacksonville was unable to make use of the break. Helped by a roughing the passer penalty called on Breeland Speaks during a 19-yard pass play to Paul, the Jaguars finally ended up with fourth and 10 at the Chiefs 11-yard line, and the pass to Cole was just short of the sticks.

The Chiefs went three and out on their next possession — giving the Jaguars hope for a comeback — but Jacksonville was flagged for running into the kicker on Dustin Colquitt’s punt — giving the Chiefs a first down, and sealing the 30-14 win.

Full game stats from NFL.com


Stats Headlines

Patrick Mahomes was 22 for 38 for 313 yards, no passing touchdowns, a rushing touchdown and two interceptions. His passer rating was only 62.9 on the day. He was sacked once.

For the Jaguars, Blake Bortles completed 33 passes on 61 attempts for 430 yards, with one passing touchdown and one rushing touchdown, and four interceptions. That added up to a passer rating of 54.7. The Chiefs sacked him five times.

Travis Kelce led Chiefs receivers with 100 yards on five catches. Sammy Watkins had six catches for 78 yards, and Tyreek Hill had four for 61. Kareem Hunt rushed for 87 yards and a touchdowns on 22 attempts. The Chiefs combined for 126 yards rushing on 30 attempts, and allowed the Jaguars 101 yards on the ground on 17 attempts — led by T.J. Yeldon, who had 53 yards on 10 carries.

Injuries

Tanoh Kpassagnon was injured in the second quarter. After the trainers took a look at him, he limped to the sideline. Justin Houston left the game after being ruled out with a hamstring injury. Safety Eric Murray did not return after suffering a lower leg injury. Safety Armani Watts suffered a groin injury. Late in the fourth quarter, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif suffered a knee injury that appeared to be serious, but he was able to walk to the sideline with assistance.


Next week

The Chiefs go back on the road to play the New England Patriots in prime time. Kickoff will be at 7:20 pm (Arrowhead Time) on Sunday.

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