Chiefs vs Texans: Winners and losers from Sunday night

KANSAS CITY, MP - JANUARY 15: Quarterback Alex Smith
KANSAS CITY, MP - JANUARY 15: Quarterback Alex Smith /
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BALTIMORE, MD – AUGUST 19: Helmets line the sidelines of the Kansas City Chiefs during a preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens at M
BALTIMORE, MD – AUGUST 19: Helmets line the sidelines of the Kansas City Chiefs during a preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens at M /

Brett Veach

The biggest winner of the night has to be Chiefs general manager Brett Veach. Since being named general manager he has made four significant moves: trading D.J. Alexander for Kevin Pierre-Louis, trading a 2019 fourth round pick for Reggie Ragland, trading a 2018 fifth round pick for Cameron Erving and signing Butker after the Cairo Santos injury. All four of those moves were instrumental in the Chiefs winning tonight. Ragland and Erving both started the game and played well. Ragland forced a bad throw from Watson in the first half as well as ate up blocks in the running game allowing Derrick Johnson freedom to run and make some big plays.

Erving’s name was not mentioned one time the entire broadcast, and for an offensive lineman, that is as good as it gets. Against one of the best front seven units in the league, the equipment guys won’t have to spend much time on Smith’s jersey as he did not hit the ground often. In the fourth quarter he opened big holes for Hunt and helped keep Smith so clean, the staff may not even have to wash his jersey.

I’ve already discussed how well Butker played tonight but the unsung hero of the night has to be Pierre-Louis. He spent the entire fourth quarter with one of the toughest jobs of the night; spying Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson. He failed early in the fourth when he saw Watson in trouble and sprinted up the field to try and sack him. Watson is a great athlete and moved to the side as Kevin flew past him and rushed for 15 yards. Kevin did not give Watson’s athletic ability enough respect and it cost the Chiefs. That was the first and only time he made that mistake. The rest of the game he sat at the line of scrimmage and followed Watson up and down the line of scrimmage. Watson was not able to get any more rushing yards and, in fact, led to a couple Chiefs sacks.

Veach has only been the Chiefs GM for a few months, but his impact is already being felt.

Tyreek Hill

With the Texans going all out to stop Kareem Hunt and Travis Kelce going out a halftime with a concussion, Tyreek Hill took over the game late. He made an amazing toe tapping 38-yard catch on the sideline to end the third quarter. The play came on a third-and-16 following a Texans touchdown that had given them momentum. Hill’s grab swung the momentum back to the Chiefs as they took more time off the clock and finished the drive with a field goal.

The biggest play of the game came in the fourth quarter with the Chiefs up two touchdowns and the Texans refusing to go away quietly. The Texans chose to punt to Hill, a phrase that should make any special teams coach shutter. Hill caught the punt, made the first guy miss and was off to the races. Nobody can beat Hill in a race, and he ran 82 yards for the dagger touchdown the Chiefs needed to finish off any hopes of a Houston comeback. It was the first special teams score of the season and couldn’t have come at a better time.