Mahomes survives shaky game and 30-yard sack as Chiefs clinch AFC West

  • Super Bowl champions move to 12-1 record for the season
  • Packers clinch NFC North title after win over Lions
Patrick Mahomes talks to Chiefs head coach Andy Reid on the sidelines during Sunday’s game
Patrick Mahomes talks to Chiefs head coach Andy Reid on the sidelines during Sunday’s game. Photograph: Wilfredo Lee/AP
Patrick Mahomes talks to Chiefs head coach Andy Reid on the sidelines during Sunday’s game. Photograph: Wilfredo Lee/AP
Agencies

Last modified on Tue 15 Dec 2020 15.43 EST

Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs overcame a 30-yard sack, four turnovers and a 10-point deficit Sunday to clinch their fifth consecutive AFC West title by beating Miami 33-27 on Sunday.

Mahomes was picked off three times, his first multi-interception game in more than two years, but threw for 393 yards and two scores to help the Chiefs (12-1) earn their eighth consecutive victory.

Tyreek Hill ran through the Dolphins’ secondary and behind it, scoring on a 32-yard run and a 44-yard reception when Mahomes hit him in stride at the goal line.

Travis Kelce had eight catches for 136 yards and a touchdown, Mecole Hardman scored untouched on a 67-yard punt return, and Kansas City’s defense was stout against Tua Tagovailoa and the Dolphins’ injury-riddled offense. Chris Jones sacked the rookie for a safety for a 30-10 lead.

Kansas City reached 12 wins for the third consecutive season, the longest streak in club history, and have the best 13-game record in franchise history. The Chiefs set a team record with their 10th road win in a row. The Dolphins (8-5) hurt their playoff prospects by losing for only the second time in the past nine games.

Green Bay Packers 31-24 Detroit Lions

Aaron Rodgers passed for 290 yards and three touchdowns – including a record-setting score to Davante Adams – and ran for another score as the vGreen Bay Packers clinched their second straight NFC North title.

Green Bay (10-3) vaulted into possession of the top seed in the NFC with the New Orleans Saints’ loss at Philadelphia. The Packers, who own the tiebreaker against the Saints, play two of their final three regular season games at home. Adams’ 56-yard catch and run marked the eighth straight game in which he has caught a touchdown, breaking Hall of Famer Don Hutson’s franchise record.

Washington 23-15 San Francisco 49ers

Rookies Chase Young and Kamren Curl scored defensive touchdowns and Washington grabbed sole possession of first place in the NFC East after a gritty win.

Washington (6-7) have won four straight games and are now one game ahead of the New York Giants. It is Washington’s first four-game winning streak since 2016.

Washington can thank their young, impressive defense for this win. The team took a 13-7 lead at halftime after Young scooped up a fumble, shook off a tackle and ran 47 yards down the sideline for a touchdown in the second quarter. It was Young’s first professional touchdown.

New Orleans Saints 21–24 Philadelphia Eagles

Jalen Hurts gave the Philadelphia Eagles more than just a spark. He helped deliver a victory. Hurts ran for 106 yards and threw for 167 and one touchdown, Miles Sanders had 115 yards rushing and a pair of scores and Philadelphia beat the New Orleans Saints 24-21. The Eagles (4-8-1) snapped a four-game losing streak and stayed within reach in the woeful NFC East.

Minnesota Vikings 14–26 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Taking advantage of a late bye week, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers emerged refreshed and improved their playoff prospects with victory over the visiting Minnesota Vikings.

Tom Brady was 15 of 23 in the air for 196 yards and two touchdowns, including a momentum-changing 48-yard touchdown pass in the first half to Scotty Miller. Antonio Brown had five catches for 49 yards for Tampa Bay, while Ronald Jones II had 18 carries for 80 yards and a TD. The Buccaneers (8-5) had lost three of four games before their bye but entered holding the No 6 spot in the NFC’s playoff pecking order. The top seven teams in each conference advance to the playoffs.

Indianapolis Colts 44–27 Las Vegas Raiders

TY Hilton caught two touchdown passes from Philip Rivers, Jonathan Taylor rushed for a career-best 150 yards and two scores, and the Indianapolis Colts solidified their spot in the AFC playoff race. Rivers passed for 244 yards and Taylor had a key 62-yard TD run for the Colts (9-4), who racked up 456 total yards while scoring on seven of their first eight drives in their fourth victory in five games.

Arizona Cardinals 26–7 New York Giants

Hasson Reddick set a franchise record with five sacks and Kenyan Drake rushed for 80 yards and a touchdown as the Arizona Cardinals notched a solid victory.

Kyler Murray went 24-of-35 passing for 244 yards and a touchdown for the Cardinals (7-6), who bolstered their playoff positioning with just their second win in the past six games. New York (5-8) committed three turnovers and had a four-game winning streak snapped. Daniel Jones went 11-of-21 passing for 127 yards and was sacked six times.

New York Jets 3-40 Seattle Seahawks

Russell Wilson threw four more touchdowns passes to give him a new career-high with 36 for the season before finally resting in the fourth quarter, leading the Seattle Seahawks to a rout of the New York Jets. Seattle (9-4) rebounded exactly as it hoped after last week’s surprisingly poor offensive performance in a loss to the New York Giants, and stayed even with the Los Angeles Rams on top of the NFC West. The Jets (0-13) remain winless.

Houston Texans 7–36 Chicago Bears

Mitch Trubisky tossed three touchdowns passes to three different receivers in a first-half eruption as the Chicago Bears parlayed a dominant defensive performance into victory.

Trubisky helped the Bears (6-7) snap a six-game losing skid by thriving in his matchup against Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson, who was taken 10 spots after Trubisky in the 2017 NFL Draft. Trubisky closed the first half 18 of 21 for 178 yards with scoring strikes to Jimmy Graham, Darnell Mooney and Allen Robinson II as the Bears raced to a 23-point halftime advantage. Watson, with his complementary skill talent ravaged by injury and suspension, could not keep pace.

Dallas Cowboys 30-7 Cincinnati Bengals

Andy Dalton was good enough in his return to Cincinnati, tossing two touchdown passes and helping lead the Dallas Cowboys to a win over the Bengals.

Cincinnati greatly contributed to the cause of their former longtime quarterback, who was playing in Paul Brown Stadium for the first time since he was cast aside by the team before the season. Dalton was serviceable, going 16 for 23 for 185 yards, as the Cowboys (4-7) stayed in contention in the weak NFC East. He threw an 11-yard, second-quarter touchdown to Amari Cooper, and hit Tony Pollard for a seven-yard score with 2:00 left in the game.

Denver Broncos 32–27 Carolina Panthers

Drew Lock threw four touchdown passes and Diontae Spencer returned a punt for a score as the Denver Broncos beat the Carolina Panthers

It marked the most scoring passes in a game for Lock, a second-year pro. He completed 21 of 27 throws for 280 yards, with two of the TD passes going to KJ Hamler. Lock evened his touchdown-to-interception ratio for the season at 13 apiece as the Broncos (5-8) snapped a two-game skid.

Atlanta Falcons 17-20 Los Angeles Chargers

Michael Badgley hit a 43-yard field goal as time expired and the Los Angeles Chargers rallied for a 20-17 victory over the Atlanta Falcons.

Los Angeles got the ball on their 26-yard line after Michael Davis picked off Matt Ryan’s pass intended for Calvin Ridley. Justin Herbert completed to passes to get into Badgley’s range. After Kalen Ballage’s one-yard run, Badgley came on and split the uprights for the second game-winning kick of his career. Herbert was 36 of 44 for 243 yards with two touchdowns and an interception.

Tennessee Titans 31-10 Jacksonville Jaguars

Derrick Henry ran for 215 yards and two touchdowns, and the Tennessee Titans dominated Jacksonville, handing the Jaguars a 12th consecutive loss.

It was Henry’s fourth game with at least 200 yards and two scores, setting an NFL record that he previously held with Hall of Famers Jim Brown, Barry Sanders and LaDainian Tomlinson. Henry also topped the century mark for the ninth consecutive road game, leaving him one shy of the NFL mark set by Sanders over the 1996 and 1997 seasons.