The Chiefs turned their luck around this season, earning their first Super Bowl berth in 50 years after defeating the Tennessee Titans in this season’s AFC title game. However, it was a long road back that was nearly derailed in the middle of the season due to a Patrick Mahomes injury.
But even before the Chiefs stepped onto the field in Week 1, the organization made some key moves.
First, the team traded Dee Ford – who was responsible for a crucial penalty against the Patriots in the playoffs – to the San Francisco 49ers. The team then traded for Frank Clark from the Seattle Seahawks to bolster the defensive line and then acquired a draft pick that resulted in Mecole Hardman’s selection.
Kansas City also acquired LeSean McCoy, Damien Wilson, Alex Okafor and Tyrann Mathieu in the offseason. The Chiefs selected Hardman and Juan Thornhill among others to bolster their roster.
THE FIRST SIX WEEKS
The Chiefs’ high-flying offense was back and it appeared that Mahomes was still in MVP mode going into his second full season as the team’s starting quarterback. He threw three touchdown passes in Week 1 against the Jacksonville Jaguars. However, Tyreek Hill got hurt in that game and missed the next four with an injury. Kansas City was still able to start the season winning their first four games.
Once September turned to October, Kansas City lost their first two games to start the month both of them with wild card potential teams – the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans. Things would get more serious the following week.
Against the Denver Broncos, Mahomes would go down with a knee injury. He appeared to have dislocated his kneecap during the game and then popped it back in.
MOORE STEPS IN, MAHOMES COMES BACK
Matt Moore took over for Mahomes in the interim. He played in games against the Green Bay Packers and the Minnesota Vikings. He went 1-1 in that span and after just two weeks Mahomes was back in the starting role.
He came back to play the Tennessee Titans in Week 10. He was 36-for-50 with 446 passing yards and three touchdown passes. The Chiefs lost the game, 35-32. That would be their final loss of the season.
WIN, WIN, WIN
Kansas City won their final six games of the season on their way to claiming the AFC West division title and a first-round bye in the playoffs. One of the victories included a 23-16 defeat of the Patriots.
Mahomes finished those final six games with 1,405 passing yards and eight touchdown passes.
The Chiefs’ first game back after a bye didn’t start off so great. Kansas City went down by 24 points in the start of the second quarter against the Texans. Not all was lost. Mahomes led the Chiefs on a furious comeback, throwing four touchdown passes in the second quarter – which hadn’t been done since the days of Doug Williams. Three of the touchdown passes came to Travis Kelce and one went to Damien Williams. Kansas City won the game, 51-31.
The Chiefs then had the opportunity to exact revenge on the Titans. Tennessee had beaten them in the regular season and the last time they played each other in the playoffs. The Titans had also taken two of the top three teams in the AFC going into the game. It was nothing but a thing for Kansas City. The Chiefs won the game, 35-24, behind four total touchdowns from Mahomes and a rushing touchdown from Damien Williams.
Kansas City finds itself in Super Bowl LIV against the San Francisco 49ers.