Kansas City beats Oakland 21-13, to take the lead in the division
COLUMBIA, Missouri – Alex Smith and Tyreek Hill’s aggression were the difference in the Kansas City Chiefs 21-13 win over the Oakland Raiders on Thursday Night Football.
The Raiders took an early 3-0 lead before the Chiefs answered with three touchdowns in the second quarter. On his way to 264 yards, Alex Smith had his highest yards per completion of the season, including a 36-yard touchdown pass to Tyreek Hill. The rookie also added a 78-yard punt return touchdown after muffing a punt in the first quarter. The touchdown was Hill’s second return-touchdown of the year and seventh total touchdown of the season.
The Chiefs started the third quarter with two consecutive turnovers, one of which resulted in an Oakland field goal, before finding their rhythm again. While temperatures remained below freezing throughout the game, precipitation was virtually non-existent and wind appeared to be a non-factor. The result was another Chiefs victory that handed them the AFC West lead and season sweep of the Raiders. The game also created even more parity in the division with the Broncos, Chiefs and Raiders all separated by just 2.5 games.
The Chiefs became just the fourth team this season to reach the 10-win mark – the third time the team has won at least double-digit games in the four years of the Andy Reid-era. The Chiefs are now 21-4 in their last 25 regular-season games and only need to keep pace with the Raiders over the last three games of the season to win the division for the first time since 2010, and likely earn a first-round bye in the playoffs.
The Raiders, who lost control of the division with the loss, now lead the AFC Wild-Card standings. They get 10 days off before traveling to San Diego to face a Chargers team they narrowly defeated earlier this season; the Chiefs will host a playoff hopeful Titans squad before the defending-champion Broncos come to town in an important Sunday Night Football, divisional game on NBC.