The Kansas City Chiefs showed up in a big way against the Las Vegas Raiders on both sides of the ball. The defense continued to perform well on Sunday against the Raiders, putting the cherry on top of a dominant six-week run for a unit that wasn’t able to stop a nosebleed for the first seven weeks.
Aided by a less than stellar offense at the same time, this mixture of timing and poor play resulted in a 3-4 record through the season’s first seven games. However, these last 6 weeks have been a different story, and Week 14’s overwhelming win against the Las Vegas Raiders was a great example.
The Raiders, coming off a 1-3 stretch over their last 4 games, including a 41-14 demolition at the hands of the Chiefs back in Week 11, have fallen from grace after a 5-2 start to their year. Kansas City came into this matchup having only allowed six touchdowns in their last five games, and with the one touchdown the Raiders got in this game, the Chiefs have only allowed 7 TDs across the last half of the 2021 season.
K.C. Chiefs put up dominant defensive showing against Raiders in Week 14.
Multiple defenders stood out in this matchup including cornerback Mike Hughes, who started in place of L’Jarius Sneed who missed this contest due to personal matters. Hughes started the party early with a fumble recovery turned touchdown on the very first play from scrimmage for the Raiders, and it didn’t stop there. In the first half alone, the Chiefs defense had forced 2 fumbles and an interception and the team had scored 21 points off those 3 turnovers for a 35-3 halftime lead.
The Chiefs’ defense took their newfound nose for the football into the second half as well, forcing 2 more fumbles in the second half en route to a 48-9 annihilation of the Raiders. The 89 points scored by the Chiefs in their two meetings against the Raiders this year is the most by either team in a season series in the history of the Raiders-Chiefs rivalry.
Kansas City proved their defense is up to snuff and can make things happen in a big way. Even though they played against a fledgling team in the Raiders, they still showed up in a way we haven’t seen this season from this defense.
It’s games like today where we see the kind of playmakers on the defensive side of the ball, and how every game doesn’t need to come down to Patrick Mahomes throwing for 500 yards and 5 touchdowns to win by 8. Clyde Edwards-Helaire can score twice on the ground, the defense can get a score and keep the other team out, and that effectively shuts the door when Kansas City doesn’t have to throw their way back into a game or to increase their lead.
This game was a statement win for the Chiefs in a season where they lost to the Ravens, Bills, and Titans and couldn’t seem to pull a game together in every aspect. This was the exact sort of “look at us” game that Kansas City needed after a 5-0 stretch that firmly cements them back in the picture for the #1 seed in the AFC, and not just because they can beat up on poor teams, but because they can annihilate them.