The Washington Redskins vie for their second straight dominating prime-time performance against an AFC West opponent on Monday night when they face the undefeated Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium. The Redskins handed the Oakland Raiders their first loss of the season under the lights on Sunday night, forcing three turnovers and limiting Derek Carr. and Co. to just 128 total yards of offense in a 27-10 rout.
“There was some fundamental clinic tape in that game that I am very, very impressed with,” Washington coach Jay Gruden said of his defense that limited the Raiders to 32 rushing yards and did not allow them to convert on third down last week (0-for-11). “Now the standards are set very high around here now. The ability to maintain it is going to be critical for us.” That improved defense could have a tall task in corralling electrifying rookie Kareem Hunt, who stepped in for the injured Spencer Ware in the preseason and leads the NFL with 401 rushing yards. The third-round selection ran for 172 yards in a 24-10 win over the Los Angeles Chargers last week and is the first rookie since 1981 to record six touchdowns through his first three career games. Kansas City averages a league-leading 162.0 rushing yards, and its 397.3 yards of total offense is third-best in league.
TV: 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN. LINE: Chiefs -7. O/U: 49.5
ABOUT THE REDSKINS (2-1): Kirk Cousins threw for 365 yards and three touchdowns last week while boasting a 150.7 passer rating to earn NFC Offensive Player of the Week honors. Fresh off his best start of the season, Cousins could also see the returns of two key offensive cogs on Monday as tight end Jordan Reed (ribs, shoulder) and running back Rob Kelley (ribs) each have expressed confidence in getting back to action after a one-game absence. Their respective understudies did quite well in their stead, with veteran tight end Vernon Davis reeling in a touchdown pass and fourth-year back Chris Thompson amassing 188 all-purpose yards and a score in last week’s rout. Washington’s ground game could pay dividends against a Kansas City defense that is 21st in yards per carry (4.3) and 19th in rushing yards per game (111.7).
ABOUT THE CHIEFS (3-0): Kansas City has recorded at least one touchdown of more than 50 yards in an NFL-record nine straight regular-season games, with 11 scores in total coming in that stretch. “We’ve got big-play guys that can go, when given the opportunity. (They) can take it the distance,” quarterback Alex Smith said. Second-year wide receiver Tyreek Hill (team-leading 16 receptions, 253 yards) was responsible for six of those touchdowns while Hunt has three. Tight end Travis Kelce, who has one of those scores, is looking to rebound after a one-reception, one-yard performance on the heels of making eight grabs for 103 yards and a touchdown the previous week.
1. Kansas City LB Justin Houston is third in the AFC with four sacks.
2. Washington LB Zach Brown’s 33 tackles are second in the league, trailing only Jatavis Brown (36) of the Chargers.
3. The Chiefs are hosting their first Monday Night Football game since dominating New England 41-14 in 2014.
PREDICTION: Chiefs 27, Redskins 20