The Broncos aren’t especially good, but credit where it’s due – they did what they had to and covered the spread.
• Pat Mahomes led the team to a comeback win, but the explosive plays weren’t there – only 6.8 YPA and one TD pass – though he did have 304 yards and ran another one in for a score.
• After a slow start, Travis Kelce got his, thanks in part to a short TD flip near the goal line. Tyreek Hill (13-9-54) was quiet and inefficient, though he did have a big punt return and forced the Broncos to kick to the sidelines the rest of the game. Sammy Watkins injured his hamstring early and wasn’t a factor.
• Kareem Hunt had the Todd Gurley game for which we had been waiting – 19 carries for 121 yards and a TD, with three catches for 54 more yards. Hunt had only one catch coming into the game, so this was a major development for his value.
• Case Keenum had 254 yards on 7.4 YPA, but no TDs, one pick, and he missed a wide open Demaryius Thomas on what could have been a game-winning TD.
• Phillip Lindsay and Royce Freeman both looked great running the ball against a soft Chiefs front, but neither saw a major workload, and Freeman was not used at all in the passing game.
• The Broncos receivers were quiet, as Keenum spread the ball around. Tight end Jeff Heuerman (7-4-57) was their leading receiver.
• Even though it failed, I loved the hook and ladder attempt on the Broncos’ final play. There might have been enough time to spike the ball had they not tried it, but between getting lined up and spiking it without a penalty (and run-off) and executing the next play in the end zone, it would have been a long shot anyway. Why not try to get it then and there with a play they’re not expecting?
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• The Broncos defense was able to slow the Chiefs offense to an extent, but Week 5 at Jacksonville is the real test.