KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Kansas City Chiefs played without their top wide receiver, their left tackle and their starting running back and still had no problem dispatching the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.
That’s because they received another big game from quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who threw for 374 yards and three touchdowns in the Chiefs’ 33-22 victory.
Mahomes fell short of his second straight 400-plus-yard passing game. He had 443 in last week’s game in Oakland. But he had his 13th straight game with more than 300 yards, breaking a tie with Hall of Famer Kurt Warner for the most by a player in his first 20 games in NFL history.
The Chiefs every week ask much of Mahomes, the NFL’s reigning Most Valuable Player, but his burden was bigger against the Ravens. The Chiefs played without wide receiver Tyreek Hill, left tackle Eric Fisher and running back Damien Williams, all out with injuries.
So they relied on Mahomes more than usual, particularly in the first half. Mahomes attempted a pass on 25 of 34 first-half plays. He completed 20 for two touchdowns, including an 83-yarder to Mecole Hardman that is the second-longest scoring throw of Mahomes’ career.
“I think it’s the preparation coach [Andy] Reid puts us through during training camp," Mahomes said when asked how the depleted Chiefs continued to roll without so many of their key components. “We get everyone in. Everyone gets reps with the [starters]. I think guys kind of build that confidence then to know that they can play whenever they get their name called."
To Mahomes’ point, the Chiefs got contributions from some unheralded players, most notably running back Darrel Williams. After playing little in the season’s first two games, Williams led the Chiefs in rushing with 62 yards and caught five passes.
But guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif pointed to Mahomes for keeping things together. Mahomes became the only player in the last 40 seasons with 250 passing yards and two touchdowns in the first half of three straight games.
“Pat being Pat for sure helped," Duvernay-Tardif said.
Ravens safety Earl Thomas said during the week the Ravens would shut off Kansas City’s flow of big plays. The Chiefs had six plays of at least 20 yards and five of at least 25.
“We’re going to play our offense and do our offense the way we do it," Mahomes said. “We’re going to have opportunities to beat people deep and we’re going to execute on those. You can say it during the week but we’re still going to do what we do every single week."