The Kansas City Chiefs hardly dominated the Oakland Raiders in Oakland, but they did hold on to beat their longtime division rivals 40-33, extending their record to 10-2 — and continuing their domination of the AFC.
The Raiders won the toss and deferred to the second half.
Tremon Smith returned the opening kickoff 19 yards, which gave the Chiefs the ball at their own 22-yard line to begin their first drive. Patrick Mahomes found Travis Kelce on a crossing route on the first play from scrimmage, which the tight end turned into a 23-yard gain. But Tahir Whitehead forced a fumble on the tackle. The Raiders recovered, putting them in business at their own 44-yard line.
The Raiders got two yards on a run from Doug Martin and a yard from a short pass to Jordy Nelson. On third-and-seven, Derek Carr completed a pass to Seth Nelson that was short of the sticks, which brought up a fourth-and-one at the Chiefs 47. The Raiders decided to go for it, and handed it off to Martin for a 10-yard gain — but former Chief Rodney Hudson was called for holding, nullifying the play and forcing a punt, which went out of bounds at the Chiefs 35-yard line.
Kansas City tried a running play to Tyreek Hill, who turned the corner on the left side and sprinted down the sideline for a 33-yard gain that put the Chiefs at the Raiders 32-yard line. Mahomes couldn’t connect on a deep pass to Conley, but Nick Nelson was penalized for pass interference, which gave the Chiefs a first-and-10 at the six-yard line. Oakland was then called for a neutral zone infraction — moving the Chiefs three yards closer — and on the next play, Mahomes found Kelce in the end zone to put the Chiefs ahead 7-0 with 12:11 remaining in the first quarter.
On the kickoff, a 25-yard Erik Harris return — and a holding penalty against the Raiders’ Justin Miller — gave the ball to the Raiders at their own 15. They immediately picked up 24 yards with a pass to Nelson, and then Carr was run out of bounds for an eight-yard gain. But on the next play, Martin was tripped up by Dee Ford, and Allen Bailey forced a fumble while bringing him down. Justin Houston recovered the ball at the Oakland 49, and the Chiefs had a short field for their next drive.
The Chiefs gave Spencer Ware a handoff for his first touch of the game, which gained two yards. On the next play, Mahomes was forced out of the pocket and found daylight on the left side, gaining 24 yards before being run out of bounds. But Cameron Erving was called for unnecessary roughness on the play, which moved the Chiefs back to the Raiders’ 34. After an incompletion to Demetrius Harris, Mahomes hit Damien Williams with passes on consecutive plays — one for six yards, and one for a yard — which weren’t enough to move the sticks, and the Chiefs had to settle for a 29-yard Harrison Butker field goal that made the score 10-0 with 7:45 remaining in the first quarter.
The next play was unusual, to say the least. Butker’s kickoff appeared to be headed out of bounds, and Raider Dwayne Harris was going to let it go. At the last moment, the ball took a bounce that would have put it into the end zone for a touchback, but Harris knocked it back on to the field of play at the one-yard line. But because Harris had one foot out of bounds when he touched the ball, the kickoff was ruled out-of-bounds, which gave the Raiders the ball at their own 40-yard line.
The Raiders got to midfield with a five-yard pass to Jared Cook, a two-yard rush from DeAndre Washington, and a three-yard pass to Nelson. Houston dropped Martin for a one-yard loss, Martin picked up two yards on a pass reception, and then Bailey and Ford sacked Carr for a four-yard loss, which forced another Raiders punt.
Starting at their own 14-yard line, the Chiefs got a first down with a 10-yard pass to Harris. Ware was stopped in the backfield for a two-yard loss, and then caught a pass for a five-yard gain. Mahomes’ third-and-7 pass to Harris fell incomplete, and the Chiefs were forced to punt.
From their own 38, the Raiders missed a pass to Cook, and picked up a first down with a pair of carries by Martin. Another incompletion — this one to Roberts — brought up second down, and Carr found Cook for a 12-yard pass completion that put the Raiders past midfield to end the first quarter.
A pass to Nelson gained two yards, and Jalen Richard gained seven on a run inside. Martin gained two more for another first down. But then Washington was stopped for a two-yard loss, and the Chiefs’ Jarvis Jenkins forced a fumble, which Dorian O’Daniel recovered at the Kansas City 30-yard line.
Ware was dropped for a three-yard loss, and then gained four. Mahomes found Kelce for a 13-yard gain for a first down. A false start by Erving blew the next play dead and moved the Chiefs back five yards. From his own 39, Mahomes then tried a deep short to Hill — which Hill couldn’t bring in while triple-covered near the goal line — followed by another deep shot to Gehrig Dieter that was overthrown. That brought up thrid-and-15, which Mahomes converted with a 16-yard pass to Kelce, and then gained six with a scramble to the right. Damien Williams got six yards off-tackle for another first down, and got another carry for three more. Ware gained only a yard on second down, which brought up third-and-six. Mahomes was forced to scramble, but his deep pass to Harris at the Raiders seven-yard line was ruled to have been thrown from beyond the line of scrimmage, and the Chiefs had to settle for a 50-yard field goal, extending their lead to 13-10 with 7:07 remaining in the first half.
The Raiders — starting at their 25 after a touchback — started with a seven-yard rush, and then Carr hit Cook with a 29-yard pass that put them into Chiefs territory. Carr then found Nelson for another six yards, but Marcell Ateman was called for offensive pass interference, which put the Raiders at second-and-20. Carr went for Ateman on the next pass, which he caught for a seven-yard gain. The Raiders converted on a 16-yard pass to Roberts, and then Carr hit Harris for a nine-yard gain that put the Raiders in the red zone for the first time. Martin gained five on first down, and then Ford was called for a neutral zone infraction that put the Raiders at the Chiefs 12-yard line as the two-minute warning was sounded.
Martin gained seven off-tackle after play resumed, and then Carr — under pressure — tried a pass to Nelson in the end zone that went high. But Cook and the Chiefs’ Eric Murray got into a shoving match on the left sideline at the end of the play, which continued well past the whistle. After officials and other players separated the players, both were penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct. That made it third-and-five at the Kansas City seven. Carr tried a pass to Roberts that went incomplete, but Kendall Fuller was called for pass interference, which gave the Raiders a new set of downs at the one-yard line. Two plays later, Martin powered through the middle for a touchdown, narrowing the score at 13-7 with just 1:04 left in the half.
Tremon Smith returned the ensuing kickoff 43 yards to the Chiefs 48, but Dieter was called for holding, which started the Chiefs at their 18-yard line. Mahomes hit Conley for a five-yard gain, and found Kelce for another 25. Kelce caught another for eight that put the Chiefs into Oakland territory. On the next play, Mahomes found Demarcus Robinson deep on the right for a 38-yard gain that Robinson carried all the way across the field before being forced across the left sideline at the Raiders six-yard line. On the next play, Kelce scored on a six-yard pass from Mahomes with just seven seconds remaining in the half. The extra point was blocked, and the Chiefs took a 19-7 lead into the locker room.
Starting from their own 25 after a touchback, the Raiders got a first down with a one-yard gain from Martin, a two-yard pass to Nelson, and an eight-yard completion to to Richard. Then Richard found daylight around right end, picking up 30 yards, and putting the Raiders well across midfield. A short pass to Roberts gained three, and then Ford sacked Carr for a six-yard loss. Carr fumbled on the play, but the Raiders recovered. Carr couldn’t connect with Ateman on the third-and-eight pass, and Oakland had to settle for a 50-yard Daniel Carlson field goal on their opening drive of the half. That made the score 19-10 with 11:10 left in the third quarter.
After a touchback, the Chiefs gained three with a handoff to Ware, and picked up a first down with a 13-yard pass to Hill — his first completion of the game. Ware picked up 13 on a nifty run that was good for another first down in Oakland territory. Mahomes hit Kelce for eight yards, and Williams romped for 17 on an off-tackle run. Now at the Raiders 21-yard line, Mahomes couldn’t connect with Conley, and then found Harris for a 16-yard gain than gave the Chiefs first-and-goal at the five. Mahomes lateraled to Hill, who went around right end, but stepped out of bounds before touching the pylon. Ware couldn’t get in on third down, and the Chiefs decided to go for it. Shifting into a wildcat formation with Mahomes motioning to the left, Ware took the snap, faked a handoff to Hill and scored on a one-yard run that extended the Chiefs’ lead to 26-10.
Spencer Ware with the touchdown! pic.twitter.com/WyXiqZVpJr— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) December 2, 2018
Harris returned the kickoff 31 yards, which started the next Oakland drive at their 32-yard line. Car found Nelson for a six-yard gain, went incomplete to Ateman, and then hit Cook for a 20-yard gain that put the Raiders across midfield. Richard ran off-tackle for 23 yards, and that put the Raiders in the red zone. Richard gained 10 yards off-tackle, but the play was called back for an illegal shift. Carr took an end zone shot to Roberts that went incomplete, but then found Cook in the end zone for a 24-yard touchdown pass. The Raiders two-point conversion attempt — a run by Richard — failed, making the score 26-17 with 3:28 left in the third quarter.
Smith returned the kickoff 19 yards to the Chiefs 20, but the Chiefs couldn’t get anything started, going three and out after a three-yard rush from Ware and a couple of incomplete passes — one of them a deep shot that Hill dropped.
The punt started the Raiders at their 34. On the first play, Richard went off-tackle for a 17-yard gain, but Kendall Fuller forced a fumble than Dan Sorensen recovered at the Chiefs 48-yard line.
Mahomes started the next drive with another deep shot to a wide-open Hill in the end zone, but it was just beyond Hill’s grasp. Then Mahomes hit Kelce for a nine-yard gain, and ran it himself for two to get the first down. A pair of incompletions brought up third-and-10. Mahomes went deep for Kelce, who caught the ball and fell to the ground — seemingly untouched — and then got up ran to the end zone. But after the scoring replay, the officials determined Kelce was down by contact at the Oakland 13. On the next play, Mahomes found Harris for a touchdown pass, and the Chiefs led 33-16. with four seconds left in the third quarter.
The Raiders came right back. After a touchback, Martin gained seven up the middle, and picked up a first down with four more off-tackle. Carr found Nelson with a 13-yard pass for another first down. Richard got two yards around right end, Martin caught a pass good for four, and a nine-yard completion to Nelson gained another first down and put the Raiders in the red zone. Richard gained 16 yards, giving the Raiders first-and-goal at the three. Martin couldn’t get in, but on the next play, Carr found fullback Keith Smith wide open in the end zone, and the Raiders cut the lead to 33-23 with 10:41 left in the game.
The Chiefs’ next drive would go nowhere. After a seven yard rush by Damien Williams, a six-yard pass to Kelce was called back when Conley was called for holding. After two incompletions, the Chiefs were forced to punt.
Starting at their own 46, the Raiders lost two yards when Ford stopped Martin in the backfield. Then Orlando Scandrick was called for pass interference on a deep incompletion to Nelson, which put the Raiders into Chiefs territory. A 20-yard pass to Nelson put the Raiders into the red zone. The Raiders set up first-and-goal at the nine-yard with runs from Martin and Washington. Carr had top throw the ball away under pressure on first down, but on the next play, he found Ateman in the end zone, and narrowing the score to 33-30 with 6:46 remaining.
Following a touchback, Mahomes scrambled for eight yards to start the drive — helpfully extended by a defensive holding call against the Raiders — and nine more on a keeper. Ware gained six yards, but the play was called back when Mitch Morse was called for holding. Ware came back with another six-yard run. Mahomes couldn’t connect on a deep pass to Hill, but the Raiders were offside on the play, giving the Chiefs a first down. Mahomes then hit Conley for 18 yards, which put the Chiefs into Oakland territory. Williams ran off-tackle for five, Ware was stopped for no gain, and then — after beiing forced from the pocket — Mahomes ad-libbed a 25-yard pass to Kelce that gave the Chiefs first-and-goal at the Raiders’ four-yard line.
Ware gained two yards off-tackle as the two minute warning sounded. When play resumed, Mahomes extended the Chiefs lead to 40-30 when he hit Conley at the back of the end zone with 1:54 remaining in the game.
The Raiders managed a field goal on their final possession — which started with a sack by Chris Jones, marking his eighth consecutive game with a sack — but couldn’t recover an onside kick afterwards. That sealed a 40-33 Chiefs victory.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes was 23 for 38 for 295 yards. He had four touchdown passes and no interceptions, and had a passer rating of 120.0 on the day. He was was not sacked, and gained 52 yards on nine carries.
Derek Carr completed 29 of 38 for 285 yards, with three touchdowns and no interceptions. His passer rating for the game was 123.2. The Chiefs sacked him three times.
Travis Kelce led Chiefs receivers with 168 yards and two touchdowns on 12 receptions. Demetrius Harris caught three passes for 39 yards and a touchdown, and Chris Conley had three catches for 25 yards and a touchdown.
Spencer Ware gained 47 yards rushing on 14 attempts, plus five yards on one catch. Damien Williams had five runs for 38 yards, and Tyreek Hill had two for 37. As a team, the Chiefs had 30 rushing attempts good for 174 yards.
The Raiders’ Doug Martin and Jalen Richard combined for 156 yards rushing on 24 attempts.
Wide receiver Sammy Watkins, safety Eric Berry, defensive lineman Justin Hamilton, offensive linemen Kahlil McKenzie and Jimmy Murray, and tight end Deon Yelder were listed as inactive for the game.
Eric Fisher left the game in the second quarter, but returned. Travis Kelce took a hard hit to the ribs on a reception in the second quarter, but stayed in.
The Chiefs return to Arrowhead on Sunday, December 9 in a critical AFC matchup with the Baltimore Ravens. Kickoff is set for 12:00 noon Aroowhead time.
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Thank you all for your cooperation. — Pete Sweeney