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4 winners and 4 losers from the Chiefs’ win over the Jets

Kansas City held on to win in New York. Which players caught out attention?

Kansas City Chiefs v New York Jets Photo by Kevin Sabitus/Getty Images

If there are no moral victories, then there aren’t moral losses, either.

It just doesn’t matter that we feel the final three quarters of the Kansas City Chiefs’ 23-20 victory over the New York Jets on Sunday night were... well, ugly. At the end of the game, the Chiefs got to 3-1 on the season.

Yes... after Kansas City turned in a dominant first quarter, New York was better on both offense and defense. But fortunately, Kansas City has the league’s MVP. He was determined to grind out a victory on the ground if he wasn’t able to do it through the air.

Here are a few Chiefs who stood out in a game that was far too close for comfort — but was nonetheless a win.


NFL: Kansas City Chiefs at New York Jets Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Running back Isiah Pacheco: The game’s first touchdown came from the local New Jersey kid. He was electric throughout the game, collecting 158 total yards and that score. The Kansas City offense sputtered after a hot start, so it needed someone to provide a spark. So it turned to No. 10. Power, speed, contact balance and receiving ability. Pacheco has it all — — and on Sunday night, it was all on display. The Chiefs wouldn’t have won without him.

Mike Edwards: The Chiefs’ third safety had a first-quarter sack, a momentum-shifting tackle in the third quarter and near-interception after that. He was brought in to help force turnovers; he’s known for being able to find the football. Two weeks in a row, Edwards has been getting it done.

Kadarius Toney: In the second quarter, he finally got involved with an important diving catch where he took a big hit and came down with the ball. He immediately got the ball back on a pop pass and broke some tackles to get a bit downfield. Toughness may not be synonmous with his name — but maybe it should be. While these two plays would be his only impacts on the game, they were still encouraging to see after his season got off to such a slow start.

Quarterback Patrick Mahomes — when running: We’ve said before that running Mahomes is the best Mahomes. Against the Jets, he was incredible on the ground. Finishing as the team’s second-leading rusher with 51 yards on seven carries, Mahomes showed how he has a real knack for sensing just the right moment to take off and move the chains. In large part, Kansas City’s seven-minute, game-sealing drive happened because Mahomes simply refuses to lose. The MVP ran for 14 yards (called back for penalty), 25 yards and 9 yards — before sliding down short of the goal line like Jerick McKinnon in the Super Bowl.


NFL: Kansas City Chiefs at New York Jets Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Wide receiver Skyy Moore: On the first drive, the Chiefs stalled when Mahomes tried to hit Moore — but due to lack of separation (or maybe his inability to lay out and make a play), the pass fell incomplete; Harrison Butker came on for a field goal. In fact, Moore failed to convert either of his two targets — although he did rush twice for 19 yards. While he was consistently featured as a decoy on jet sweep motions, we just have higher expectations for the second-year receiver.

Right tackle Jawaan Taylor: New York’s first points came on yet another penalty on the team’s right tackle. This time, it was a facemask call as he was protecting Mahomes in the end zone. Later, a holding flag would erase Mahomes’ run for a first down — which forced him to do it again on third-and-22. At this point, the penalties have become ridiculous — and they are completely overshadowing what is otherwise a solid start for his season.

Running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire: The Chiefs ran for over 200 yards on Sunday night — but it wasn’t like Week 3, when each of the running backs played a big role. Edwards-Helaire managed just 13 yards on four touches. There will be other days when he is one of the reasons the team wins — but against the Jets, he wasn’t really able to get going.

Quarterback Patrick Mahomes — when throwing the ball: It’s rare to see Mahomes on the losers’ list — and even more unusual to put him on both lists. But it’s just startling to see the greatest quarterback on Earth throw two interceptions and have a third one dropped. (he also fumbled once — but to his credit, he recovered it and made a first down). He did come back and put the team on his back to win this game — but for Mahomes, it was an uncharacteristically ugly passing performance.

Note: Applying the labels “winners” and “losers” is not intended to be a judgment on the talent or character of any of these players. It’s just a simple way to grade their performance in a single game. No disrespect is intended.

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