Tied with the Kansas City Chiefs at 24 in the fourth quarter, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers connected on a short screen pass to running back Aaron Jones. Jones took the ball upfield for a 67-yard touchdown and a 31-24 lead. The Packers never looked back, defeating the Chiefs Sunday night at Arrowhead Stadium.
The Chiefs had an opportunity to tie the game on a drive after the Packers took the lead, but they stalled at the 40-yard line. With a little more than five minutes to go in the game — facing fourth-and-3 — Chiefs head coach Andy Reid brought in the punt team. The Chiefs never got the football back as the Packers took all the time off the clock.
The Packers started the game with the football, converting two third downs on a 10-play, 74-yard drive to take a 7-0 lead in the first quarter. On the second of the two, facing third-and-9, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers threw a perfect 34-yard pass to wide receiver Jake Kumerow down the right sideline. Kumerow appeared to bobble the football on a diving catch, so head coach Andy Reid challenged the play — but it was upheld. Running back Aaron Jones finished the drive with a 4-yard touchdown. Jones added another touchdown later in the first quarter to give Green Bay a 14-0 lead.
The Chiefs got on the board when quarterback Matt Moore faked a pitch and shovel pass, which led to tight end Travis Kelce being wide open deep downfield. Moore threw up a rainbow pass, and Kelce tracked and caught the ball for the Chiefs’ first points of the day.
On the Chiefs’ next possession, wide receiver Mecole Hardman took a quick shovel pass 30 yards for a touchdown to tie the game at 14.
Harrison Butker — who missed a 50-yard field goal in the first quarter — made his second attempt to make it 17-14 Chiefs at the half.
The Packers pushed the ball inside the Chiefs’ red zone on their first possession of the third quarter — but on third-and-goal at the Kansas City 7-yard line, defensive lineman Emmanuel Ogbah broke through for a sack. The Packers settled for a 35-yard field goal to tie the game at 17.
LeSean McCoy fumbled the ball on the next possession, giving Rodgers and the Packers the ball at the Chiefs 27-yard line. Rodgers was nearly sacked at the Kansas City 15-yard line, but when falling backward, he floated a ball up to the right corner of the end zone. It was perfectly placed. Running back Jamaal Williams came down with the 3-yard touchdown pass, putting the Packers ahead 24-17.
The Chiefs tied the game at 24 by way of a 10-play, 75-yard drive constructed by Moore. A 3-yard touchdown run by Damien Williams — who went in the game after McCoy fumbled — tied the game at 24, but only two plays later, Rodgers found Jones for the 67-yard touchdown pass that sealed the game.
Chiefs stats of note
Matt Moore registered a passer rating of 107.1, completing 24 of 36 for 267 yards and and interceptions. He was sacked twice.
Aaron Rodgers was 23 of 33 for 305 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions, good for a passer rating of 129.0. He was sacked five times in the game — the most sacks the Packers have allowed since their Week 1 game against the Chicago Bears.
The Chiefs allowed 118 yards on the ground on 26 attempts — an average of 4.5 yards per attempt. 45 of those yards came on 12 attempts in the fourth quarter. The Chiefs gained 88 yards on 40 carries for 4.4 yards per attempt.
Damien Wilson had the Chiefs’ best defensive game — registering six tackles (five solo), three quarterback hits and a key sack midway through the second quarter. Defensive lineman Tanoh Kpassagnon had two sacks in the game. Khalen Saunders registered his first career sack late in the third quarter.
Chiefs head coach Andy Reid will take major heat for his decision to punt at the Chiefs’ own 40-yard line in the fourth quarter — as will running back LeSean McCoy for a bad fumble.
But the Chiefs showed that perhaps their defensive effort on Thursday night was not an outlier — but rather a sign of things to come. Even though Chad Henne will be available, quarterback Matt Moore probably earned another start.
And the Chiefs should be healthier next week and beyond.
The loss is by no means the end of the world — but the Chiefs could have won.