LAS VEGAS — Patrick Mahomes scrambled away from pressure as he ran toward the line of scrimmage and launched a deep ball that turned a seemingly broken play into a touchdown.
Sunday night saw the return of the Mahomes and now the Kansas City Chiefs sit at the top of the division.
Mahomes completed five touchdown passes, returning to his normal form following a surprisingly shaky start to the season. The Chiefs beat the Las Vegas Raiders by 41-14.
“We’ve done it before,” Mahomes said. “We’ve done it these last few seasons, we were doing at the beginning of this season. It was all about moving the ball, making lots of things happen. It was just turning over the ball. Then we kind of went through a little little spell where we weren’t making these drives and we were still finding ways to win. I knew that we’re going to click back into it.”
Mahomes, 6-4, and Chiefs (5-6) showed no resemblance with the AFC team over the last three seasons. It raised questions about their ability to win back the Super Bowl.
However, they dominated the Raiders (5-0) on a day that everyone in the division lost. This allowed them to return at the top of the standings.
Mahomes was able to complete three short TD passes and then showed his great playmaking skills in the final quarter. He converted a fake punt from Marcus Kemp on a 16-yard Kansas City pass.
Mahomes scrambled to throw a deep ball across his body, which Darrel Williams caught for an 38-yard touchdown. It made it 34-14. Before he could see the opportunity to make the big play, he almost chose to throw or run a shorter pass.
“Out of peripheral I saw Darrel,” Mahomes said. “I actually underthrew it a little bit. Darrel says he caught it. It seems that I can see it. So he made a pretty big-time play.”
Mahomes finished the game 35-for-50 for 406 yards with Byron Pringle’s 22-yarder. Mahomes also made an 8 yarder to Tyreek Hill during the first quarter. Then he connected on 1-yarders to Hill, rookie tight end Noah Gray.
“He’s a guy that never gets comfortable,” Hill said about Mahomes. “He’s always trying to get better. He’s always trying to find ways to improve himself, the team. We can’t do it without him. He knows that.”
After a promising start, the Raiders lost back-to-back matches due to poor execution and other issues.
They won two straight games after coach Jon Gruden resigned following the publication of his old offensive emails but haven’t looked the same the past two weeks. Henry Ruggs III, who was accused in a DUI collision that claimed the life of 23-year old woman died, also lost both games.
Las Vegas turned the ball five times in the last two weeks. That’s the same number as for the seven previous games. The improved defense couldn’t slow Mahomes.
Derek Carr threw two touchdown passes and also intercepted his third pass in two weeks, as the offense had difficulty getting going.
Raiders were limited to just 82 yards in their first half. This was eight years ago. Third downs went 1 for 9. To fall by double digits in halftime for the fifth year, the Raiders finished the season at 1 for 9.
“We got in a hole and against this team that’s hard,” Carr said. “They just play soft coverage. They take a huge lead and play soft cover. It’s a hard way to do it.”