Chiefs vs. Broncos winners and losers, highlights, score, top plays


The Kansas City Chiefs’ latest victory looked a lot like their last few.

Outplay the opposition, but let them stick around to make it a game. When it came time to execute in the fourth quarter, the game really wasn’t a contest.

Kansas City, winners of five straight, stifled the Denver Broncos 19-8 on “Thursday Night Football.” It’s the Chiefs’ 16th straight victory over their AFC West rival. And yes, there was famous pop singer watching from the suite section of Arrowhead Stadium cheering on tight end Travis Kelce, who was questionable entering the game with an ankle injury. But Kelce went off with seven catches and 109 yards in the first half (and finished with nine catches for 124 yards). 

Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes was 30 of 40 for 306 yards through the air with a touchdown and one interception. Rookie wideout Rashee Rice had four catches for 72 yards, while running back Isiah Pacheco rushed 16 times for 62 yards. 

Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson threw two picks and finished with just 95 passing yards (13-for-22) and 31 rushing yards (four attempts). 

Harrison Butker made all four of his field-goal attempts; his 60-yarder as time expired in the first half made it 13-0 and his 52-yarder out of the two-minute warning in the fourth quarter iced the game. 

Here are the winners and losers of “Thursday Night Football”:


Patrick Mahomes

Mahomes didn’t play a great game by his standards, but he was the best player on the field Thursday.

Mahomes went 30-for-40 passing for 306 yards. He tossed one touchdown and one interception and finished with a passer rating of 94.4.

Chris Jones extends sack streak

Jones tallied four tackles, one sack, one pass deflection and three QB hits. Jones has recorded a sack in eight straight games.

Travis Kelce shows out in front of Taylor Swift

Travis Kelce was more productive by himself than the entire Broncos offense in the first half.

Kelce had 109 receiving yards in the first two quarters. The Broncos produced 94 total yards in the first half.

Kelce ended with nine catches and 124 receiving yards in the win. Seven of Kelce’s nine receptions were on hitch routes, according to Next Gen Stats.

Rashee Rice becoming Chiefs’ top wide receiver?

Rice is slowly become Kansas City’s best wide receiver.

He had a nice 28-yard catch and run on third down in the fourth quarter. The rookie wideout led all Chiefs wide receivers with four catches for 72 yards. He caught all four of his targets.

Mahomes’ connection with Rice is steadily improving.


Broncos’ offense

The Broncos had the NFL’s worst defense entering Week 6, giving up the most points (36.2) and yards (450.6) per game. But Denver’s defense fought hard on the road and limited the Chiefs to 19 points and 389 total yards.

It was Denver’s offense that couldn’t get into a rhythm.

The Broncos’ lone touchdown didn’t come until the fourth quarter. They only managed one drive of over 50 yards.

Broncos QB Russell Wilson was subpar. He had a meager 95 passing yards and just one touchdown and two interceptions.

Wide receiver Courtland Sutton led the Broncos with four catches, 46 receiving yards and a touchdown.

Broncos in general, as losing streak vs. Chiefs moves to 16 games

The Chiefs have now defeated the Broncos 16 straight times. Denver’s last victory over Kansas City was on Sept. 17, 2015.

Unfortunately for Denver, it faces the Chiefs again in Week 8.

Thursday’s loss dropped the Broncos to 1-5 on the season.

AFC West

Since 2015, the Chiefs have a 43-6 record against AFC West opponents.

The Chiefs have won the AFC West for seven consecutive seasons and are well on their way to winning an eighth straight division title. They are the only team in the division currently with a winning record.

Broncos vs. Chiefs highlights

Patrick Mahomes took a sack on third down that made Harrison Butker’s kick 50-plus yards. However, the distance didn’t matter.

Butker split the uprights on a 52-yard field goal that made it a 19-8 game.

Butker’s 52-yard field goal to give the Chiefs some breathing room also had significant wagering implications. The spread entering the game, according to BetMGM, was 10.5 points.

Butker is 4-for-4 on field goals in the game.

The Broncos have some life.

Denver finally scored a touchdown in the fourth quarter when wide receiver Courtland Sutton made an acrobatic 11-yard catch in the end zone for a touchdown. The officials initially called it an incomplete pass, but the Broncos challenged the call, and it was reversed. Denver then got the two-point conversion to make it a 16-8 game.

The Broncos’ scoring drive was eight plays and went 61 yards. It was Denver’s first drive of the game over 50 yards. 

— Tyler Dragon

Both teams ended the third quarter by trading punts. Both teams are under 40% on third-down attempts for the game. Russell Wilson had 44 passing yards entering the fourth. 

Broncos tight end Greg Dulcich is questionable to return with a hamstring injury. He’d missed the four previous games due to a hamstring injury suffered in Week 1.

— Chris Bumbaca 

Once again, a Russell Wilson interception killed a Denver drive in Kansas City territory.

This time, Chiefs linebacker Willie Gay leaped from the line of scrimmage and batted a Wilson pass intended for tight end Greg Dulcich. The ball landed in safety Justin Reid’s arms for Wilson’s second interception of the game. 

The Broncos had moved the ball 47 yards in six plays in a two-possession game. Kansas City took over at its own 25 with 5:40 left in the third. 

— Chris Bumbaca 

Harrison Butker has been a busy man, as the Chiefs offense stalled once again inside the red zone. 

Butker’s 25-yard field goal made gave Kansas City a 16-0 lead 5:44 into the third quarter and capped a 12-play drive. The big gain came via a 23-yard connection between Mahomes and rookie wideout Rashee Rice. Running back Isiah Pacheco (11 rushes, 55 yards) has eclipsed the 55-yard mark for the fourth consecutive game. 

— Chris Bumbaca 

A fairly stereotypical – as in, snoozy – first half of “TNF” ended with the Kansas City Chiefs leading the Denver Broncos 13-0. 

Harrison Butker’s 60-yard field goal as time expired was one of the more exciting plays of the half. A 13-yard Patrick Mahomes scramble set up the score. 

The flow of the game has made it seem like the Kansas City lead is more than 10, but Denver’s defense has stood strong in the red zone, holding the Chiefs to one successful trip in four tries. 

Mahomes is 15 of 23 for 162 yards with one touchdown, a 3-yard pitch-and-catch with Kadarius Toney in the second quarter. Travis Kelce, with beau Taylor Swift in attendance, has seven catches for 109 yards. 

Russell Wilson (7-for-11, 37 yards) has been sacked three times and is averaging 3.4 yards per pass attempt.

— Chris Bumbaca 

The Chiefs scored the game’s first touchdown on their fourth possession.

Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes found WR Kadarius Toney wide open outside on a flat route for a 3-yard touchdown. 

Chiefs TE Travis Kelce had two nice catches during the seven play, 62-yard touchdown drive, including a 19-yard catch that made Taylor Swift get up and cheer.

Kelce has a game-high seven catches for 109 yards in the first half. 

— Tyler Dragon

The NFL cannot get enough of the tush push. 

Problem is, nobody can execute the short-yardage play quite like the Philadelphia Eagles. 

With 8:10 left in the first half and the Chiefs facing a fourth-and-2 from the Broncos’ 6-yard line, head coach Andy Reid called for a fake field goal. Second-string tight end Noah Gray lined up under center and got a push from behind via punter Tommy Townsend and offensive lineman Wanya Morris. But Gray could not advance the ball past the first-down marker and the Broncos escaped another Kansas City red-zone appearance with zero points allowed. 

The Chiefs are 0-for-3 in the red zone and have three points despite winning the field position battle thus far. 

— Chris Bumbaca

The Broncos and Chiefs have traded turnovers in the first quarter.

Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes threw an interception right after Kansas City’s defense forced a takeaway.

Mahomes was standing in the pocket looking for an open receiver. With the pocket collapsing around him, he tossed an ill-advised pass near the end zone that was intercepted by Broncos safety Justin Simmons.

Simmons returned the interception 6 yards to the Denver 7-yard line.

The interception was the first of the season for Simmons.

— Tyler Dragon

The Broncos were having success running the ball. 

Then Russell Wilson ended the party. 

Wilson threw an interception to Chiefs linebacker Nick Bolton, who was sitting underneath a Broncos receiver in zone coverage. Wilson never saw him, and the Chiefs got the ball back on the 43-yard line. It was Wilson’s third interception of the season. 

— Chris Bumbaca

The Chiefs’ opening drive stalled in the red zone, but they were able to get three points on kicker Harrison Butker’s 35-yard field goal.

Kansas City’s opening drive was highlighted by tight end Travis Kelce’s 5-yard catch and lateral to fellow tight end Noah Gray. Gray was able to pick up an additional seven yards after the lateral. The play helped set up the Chiefs in field goal position.

The Chiefs covered 42 total yards on their opening drive. 

— Tyler Dragon

Denver came up empty on the opening drive of the game despite moving the ball into Kansas City territory. 

The Broncos converted a third-and-2 when Javonte Williams bounced off a pair of tacklers but Russell Wilson was driven out of bounds by Justin Reid on the subsequent fourth down.  

The drive lasted nine plays and took 5:36 off the clock.

— Chris Bumbaca

Fresh off attending the premiere of her “Eras Tour” movie in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Taylor Swift is off to Kansas City for another one of her passions: watching Kansas City Chiefs football games.

Swift was spotted Thursday arriving at the Chiefs’ game against the Denver Broncos. The singer wore a black dress, paired with a red varsity jacket. She was then seen sitting next to Travis Kelce’s mother, Donna.

— Steve Gardner and Edward Segarra

All eyes were on the Chiefs’ inactive list prior to Thursday night’s for official word on Travis Kelce’s game status. The star tight end is a go.

Kelce is active despite his ankle injury and will be suiting up against the Denver Broncos.

Former NFL wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. tried to make peace with Broncos wideout Jerry Jeudy. The interaction apparently did not go well and left the NFL Network analyst inclined to blast the 2020 first-round pick during the NFL Network pregame show. 

According to Smith, he used the term “JAG” – “just a guy” – to describe Jeudy on his “Cut To It” podcast. Trying to explain himself and wish Jeudy luck from the sideline set on Thursday, Smith said Jeudy had no interest, and apparently responded: “(Expletive), I don’t mess with you.” 

“I hope today that you actually show up in a way like you haven’t since they drafted you,” Smith said on air. 

Smith wasn’t done: “When teams call me and ask should they trade for Jerry Jeudy, I will say no. Because he is mentally unable to handle constructive criticism from people who watch specifically can he be a wide receiver? He can be a wide receiver. Tier 3.”

— Chris Bumbaca

Frank Clark’s tenure with the Broncos appears to be nearing an end. 

According to multiple reports, Denver will try to trade Clark before this month’s trade deadline. Clark is inactive for the matchup against the Chiefs – meaning he won’t face his former team in the AFC West contest – and has played in just two games (36 snaps) since signing with the Broncos this past offseason. NFL Network reported Clark and the Broncos reworked his contract to facilitate a potential trade. 

Clark spent the first four seasons of his career with the Seattle Seahawks before being acquired by the Chiefs ahead of the 2019 campaign. He won two Super Bowls with Kansas City and went to three straight Pro Bowls from 2019-21. 

Denver moved on from another veteran pass rusher, Randy Gregory, last week and sent him to the San Francisco 49ers for late-round draft compensation. 

— Chris Bumbaca

Broncos at Chiefs will begin at 8:15 p.m. ET on Oct. 12.

Broncos at Chiefs will be streaming exclusively on Amazon Prime Video and will be broadcast in local markets only.

Tyler Dragon: Chiefs 28, Broncos 16

The Broncos are a mess and on the brink of a fire sale. Denver has very little chance against the defending Super Bowl champions. The Chiefs have won four in a row since losing their season opener. Kansas City surprisingly has a top-10 defense and their wide receivers are slowly improving. Patrick Mahomes targeted Rashee Rice, Kadarius Toney and Justyn Ross 15 times in Week 5.

Victoria Hernandez: Chiefs 30, Broncos 17

Are Patrick Mahomes and company the same team as last year? No. But the Broncos haven’t shown anything that would make them competitive this year in the lopsided “rivalry.” Last week, Sean Payton got served a slice of humble pie and a short turnaround doesn’t help his cause.

Safid Deen: Chiefs 27, Broncos 17

Travis Kelce could be limited by an ankle injury, but Patrick Mahomes needs to get his other playmakers involved if Kansas City is going to repeat as champs. I like the Chiefs at home against the Broncos, who feel like a dysfunctional bunch during their 1-4 start under Sean Payton. 

The Chiefs entered Thursday as 10.5-point favorites, according to BetMGM NFL odds.

Inside Amazon’s quest to create unique pregame and postgame shows around “Thursday Night Football.”


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