A late decision to go for two points came back to haunt Las Vegas as Kansas City completed a 17-point comeback to sink the Raiders to 1-4 heading into the bye week.
In a Monday night primetime spot, the Raiders lost, 30-29, to the Chiefs at GEHA Field from Arrowhead Stadium.
“Give [Kansas City head coach] Andy Reid credit,” head coach Josh McDaniels said. “They fought back – we knew they would. We figured it would be a four-quarter game and they were able to make one more play than we did.” All four of the Las Vegas losses this season have come by one possession. Combined the team has lost all four games by 14 total points.
In addition, the Raiders are now 0-3 on the road and 1-2 in the AFC West with the bye week ahead.
“This is a marathon,” McDaniels said. “If this was a sprint, we lost the sprint. But that’s not what it is. Fortunately for us, it’s a marathon.” Kansas City tight end Travis Kelce set a new team record for his position as well as Monday Night Football record with four touchdown catches leading his team to the win.
Early in the contest, Las Vegas relied on stout third down defense to keep the home team from extending drives, opening the game 0-for-3 in such situations.
Defensive lineman Maxx Crosby found success to the tune of three tackles, two for loss and two sacks. Linebacker Denzel Perryman added eight tackles, one for loss, a sack and a quarterback hit.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes began to find his safety valve, Kelce, and things began to change.
Kelce’s first touchdown came late in the second quarter to put Kansas City on the board. Eventually, Las Vegas carried a 20-10 lead into the locker room at halftime.
Kelce started out early in the second half, scoring his second touchdown of the game on the Chiefs’ first drive of the third quarter. His fourth score gave Kansas City its first lead of the game with 3:20 to go in the third quarter. By that point, the home team had scored touchdowns on five straight drives.
Soon after, the Chiefs would convert their sixth straight third down attempt on the way to 29 first downs on the night while holding the Raiders to 18.
Four of those first downs came on the backs of Las Vegas penalties. Overall, the Raiders were penalized 11 times for 99 yards.
“I think we competed hard tonight, obviously not as clean as we’d like with the penalty situation and some of the mistakes that we made,” McDaniels said. “But hopefully, we’ll learn from this and be better.”
Las Vegas receiver Davante Adams was a big reason for the early lead for the visitors as he picked up two touchdowns in this one for five in the first five games. He finished with 124 yards on three catches and seven targets.
His first score of the night came on a 58-yard bomb in the first quarter from quarterback Derek Carr, which also went as the 200th career touchdown toss from Las Vegas’ QB1.
That’s crazy. I didn’t know that until you told me,” Carr said after the game. “I’d rather win. I’d rather have 200 wins, I can promise you that. And no touchdowns. But I’ve been doing it long enough, eventually, we’re going to get there.”
Carr ended the night with 241 yards on 19-of-30 passing with two touchdowns, both to his former college teammate.
That first score from Adams came on a 4th and 1 from the team’s own 42-yard line.
“[The Chiefs] are very aggressive in those situations,” McDaniels said. “When you choose to go for it in those scenarios and they really do everything they can, within their power to stop you. You noticed there wasn’t anybody back there other than Davante and the [cornerback]. They brought everybody.”
Adams was a thorn in the side of the defense even when he wasn’t catching the ball. Two times in a three-play span, members of the Kansas City secondary were whistled for defensive pass interference calls.
His second score of the game didn’t come until the fourth quarter but it brought the Raiders to within a point of tying the game with less than five minutes left in regulation.
“I love it, we were all fired up” Carr said. “I thought [running back Josh Jacobs] was in from my point-of-view. He wasn’t and it’s frustrating, it’s hard.” Jacobs was stuffed a yard shy of the goaline as the Chiefs held onto their one-point lead with 4:27 left in the fourth quarter.
“They really had a lot of momentum offensively in the second half,” McDaniels said of the Chiefs. “We had a play that we felt really good about and thought we would get a look that would give us a shot at it. And we had a chance, we had a fair fight at it.”
Jacobs put forth another career night for the second straight week, finishing with 154 yards on 21 carries and a touchdown.
“He’s a really good back – he’s a really good football player and he loves football,” McDaniels said. “I give him, our offensive line, our tight ends, [fullback Jakob Johnson] a lot of credit. They’re in there banging away.
“Being able to keep giving it to him and Josh is the kind of back that gets better as the game goes on. I’m proud of his effort. We’ve got to start turning his performances into W’s.”
Tight end Darren Waller left the game late in the first quarter, favoring his hamstring. He would not return.
Las Vegas did get receiver Hunter Renfrow back, who missed two games due to a concussion. He caught four passes for 25 yards.