EditorsNote: A few tweaks, most notably third graf and ninth graf
Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes on Sunday became the second quarterback in NFL history to pass for 5,000 yards and 50 touchdowns in a season as the Chiefs bashed the visiting Oakland Raiders 35-3.
The victory gave the Chiefs home-field advantage as the top seed in the AFC playoffs after going 12-4 and claiming their third consecutive AFC West title.
An 89-yard scoring bomb to Demarcus Robinson with 8:33 left in the third quarter was Mahomes’ 50th TD strike of the season and pushed the first-year starter past the 5,000-yard plateau. The only other quarterback to reach both milestones in the same season was Denver’s Peyton Manning in 2013, when he set records for touchdown passes (55) and passing yardage (5,477) in a season.
Mahomes punctuated his MVP candidacy with 281 yards against the Raiders, going 14 of 24 with two touchdowns and one interception. Tyreek Hill led the Kansas City receivers with five receptions for 101 yards and scored touchdowns on a 67-yard reception and 15-yard rush.
Oakland finished 4-12 in Jon Gruden’s first season returning as coach. The Raiders were sidetracked by four turnovers on their first four possessions and fell to Kansas City for the eighth time in their last nine matchups.
Quarterback Derek Carr passed for 185 yards, going 24 of 33 with two interceptions. He also lost a fumble and was sacked three times. Oakland running back Doug Martin topped all rushers with 100 yards on 21 carries.
Among the Raiders’ turnovers was an interception Chiefs safety Daniel Sorensen returned 54 yards for a touchdown to make it 14-0 with 5:44 left in the first quarter.
The interception was the first thrown by Carr in 332 attempts and came after Mahomes fired the 67-yard scoring bomb to Hill to cap the Chiefs’ first series.
Kansas City also capitalized on a fumble recovery by Justin Houston after the linebacker stripped Carr. That led to a 60-yard touchdown drive and a 21-0 lead before a 50-yard field goal by Oakland’s Daniel Carlson made it 21-3 at halftime.
Chiefs defensive lineman Chris Jones, who did not start but did play, failed to record a sack and thus ended his NFL-record streak at 11 games with at least a sack.
—Field Level Media