Taylor Swift didn’t make it to Frankfurt. But so did the Chiefs’ drops and red zone problems, as Kansas City held off a second-half comeback from the Miami Dolphins to win 21-14.
Patrick Mahomes has found 11 different receivers to ensure last week’s loss to Denver is well and truly washed away after this win over a fellow AFC contender removed a valuable tie-breaker.
Tyreek Hill was kept quiet. The Dolphins receiver’s most notable contribution, playing against his former team, was when he was on the wrong side of a strip and scored, putting the Chiefs up 21-0 at the half.
Hill had bragged before the game, saying, “They’ll get this job anywhere. You’d rather get that bulletin board material.’ But Chiefs cornerback Trent McDuffie vowed to keep his former teammate quiet and delivered his speech on the field.
It means the Dolphins have now lost to Buffalo, Philadelphia and Kansas City, the only three teams they have faced with winning records.
Travis Kelce and the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Miami Dolphins in Germany on Sunday
Patrick Mahomes found 11 different receivers to shake off last week’s loss in Denver
Kelce once again played without his girlfriend’s support after the pop star enjoyed a girls’ night out in New York City on Saturday with Selena Gomez (right) and Brittany Mahomes (left)
And Travis Kelce — who said the whereabouts of his pop princess affects the Vegas lines before games — was limited to just seven yards on three receptions as Noah Gray was the Chiefs’ best part.
Kansas City, which was nominally the home team, did not arrive in Frankfurt until Friday. But backed by a noisy crowd, they immediately looked home.
It helps when you have a quarterback like Mahomes who has looked good. The opening drive started with a 22-meter gain for Marques Valdes-Scantling. It ended with Rashee Rice shaking off four swinging tackles for an 11-yard score — the first on an opening drive for the Chiefs this season.
This was nominally a home game for KC and the Chiefs Kingdom made a little piece of Germany look like Arrowhead, albeit 5,000 miles away.
The Dolphins started with some trademark flash plays — a blinder allowed Jaylen Waddle to gain 31 yards — but their high-powered offense barely got out of first gear.
While they struggled both in the air and on the ground, they failed to score on their first three drives for the first time this season. Miami was 0 and 6 on third down, but completed their first midway through the third quarter.
Miami’s defense was worn down by a 13-play, 95-yard drive that took 8 minutes, 28 seconds off the clock as the Chiefs asserted their authority.
Rice made an excellent diving catch on third down – one of only two in the series. The other saw Mahomes find a wide-open Jerick McKinnon with a 19-yard touchdown pass, putting KC up 14-0 after the two-minute warning.
Kansas City didn’t arrive in Frankfurt until Friday, but they immediately looked home
Star tight end Kelce was limited to just seven yards on three receptions by the Do’phins
Tyreek Hill (left) was kept quiet by his former team despite bragging before the game
But while that was exhausting, the Dolphins were shattered by a strip and score soon after.
Hill snared Tagovailoa’s pass on a screen, but was unable to avoid the onrushing Trent McDuffie. Mike Edwards recovered the fumble, turned the ball to Bryan Cook and then made a key block as his fellow safety rushed 59 yards for a wild score.
But with the score still at 21-0, there was suddenly a glimmer of hope for Miami midway through the third quarter. Cedrick Wilson Jr outwitted McDuffie to snare Tagovailoa’s 31-yard pass into the right corner.
It wasn’t the first time Mahomes seemed shaken. Bradley Chubb raced straight up the middle looking for a strip sack, while Zach Sieler recovered deep in Chief territory. It was the fourth straight game with a sack for Chubb, who breathed new life into the stadium.
Aided by a costly penalty from Chiefs DE Chris Jones — his push on Miami tackle Austin Jackson negated a third-down stop — Mostert rushed for a 31-yard score — just the third rushing touchdown the Chiefs had conceded this season.
Suddenly it seemed like a game. It went to the extreme: after the two-minute warning, Miami was in midfield. A burst from Mostert took them to the Chiefs 31.
With the game on the line on fourth-and-10, Tagovailoa fumbled Connor Williams’ bad snap and the Chiefs held on for a win.