Despite a knee injury to quarterback Patrick Mahomes, the Kansas City Chiefs defeat the Denver Broncos, 30-6, on Monday Night Football behind a strong defense that limited the Broncos to six points.
The Broncos started the scoring, embarking on a 10 play, 75-yard drive that was capped off by a one-yard Royce Freeman touchdown run. The two-point conversion was unsuccessful. The Broncos would lead 6-0 early, the only points scored by the Broncos all night.
The Chiefs would respond with a 75-yard drive of their own, ending when Mahomes found Mecole Hardman for a 21-yard touchdown, launching the Chiefs into a 7-6 lead, which they would never sacrifice.
After a 33-yard field goal from Harrison Butker to push the Chiefs lead to 10-6 at the end of the first quarter, Mahomes led the Chiefs on a near seven-minute drive. Towards the end of the drive, Mahomes attempted a quarterback sneak. With an already injured ankle, the opposing defenders landed awkwardly on his knee, dislocating it in the process. Mahomes was ruled out for the rest of the game, and the injury is significant enough that the Chiefs are certain he’s missing six to eight weeks, with the potential of missing the season.
With the Chiefs missing the reigning MVP of the league, the team kept their composure, settling for a 20-yard field goal from Butker and scoring a defensive touchdown at the end of the second quarter to push the lead to 20-6 at halftime.
The second half was all Chiefs and no Broncos. In the third quarter, back up quarterback Matt Moore found Tyreek Hill for a 57-yard catch-and-run touchdown. Butker hit a 39-yard field goal in the fourth, and the Chiefs won 30-6 against the division rival Broncos.
The future of the Chiefs relies on the power of Mahomes, who is the heart and soul of the offense. The Chiefs now face a decision to rest Mahomes for the remainder of the season and preserve future opportunities, or rush him back in eight weeks to compete against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots for the AFC title.