Chiefs vs. Broncos: 10 Observations

Here are some things that stood out Monday night

The Kansas City Chiefs (6-2) beat the Denver Broncos (3-4) by a score of 29-19 Monday night at Arrowhead Stadium.

It's the fourth-straight win for the Chiefs over their divisional rival, and with the win, the Chiefs also extended their AFC West lead to two games.

Here are 10 observations from the game:

1. Chiefs bounce back in a big way

There was a lot going on for the Chiefs' organization surrounding Monday's game.

It was the "Salute to Service" game, and it was also Alumni Day, which had former receiver Carlos Carson inducted into the Chiefs' Hall of Fame, and the legendary Len Dawson was also honored before the game as the broadcast booth on the third floor of Arrowhead Stadium is now named after him.

But none of that was bigger than what took place on the field, where this version of the Chiefs showed what 10 days of rest can do for a team that many had considered one of the best in the league before losing back-to-back games against the Steelers and Raiders.

Basically, the Chiefs got their juice back Monday night, and it came in the form of a fantastic defensive performance by a group that really looked like it was out to prove something.

2. Chiefs had a takeaway party, and everyone was invited


The Chiefs finished with five takeaways, which proved to be the difference in the game.

Coming into Monday night, the Chiefs had forced only eight turnovers on the year, but defensive coordinator Bob Sutton spoke during the week about forcing the action, forcing turnovers, and winning the 50-50 balls.

The Chiefs accomplished all three of those things Monday night.

It was apparent from the first couple of drives that this wasn't the same tired team that faced the Oakland Raiders 10 days ago. The Chiefs were able to move Broncos' quarterback Trevor Siemian off his spot and make him uncomfortable. They forced the action.

Siemian finished 19 of 36 for 198 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions.

3. Marcus Peters just stole it away


Less than six minutes into the game, Chiefs' All-Pro cornerback Marcus Peters simply took the ball away from Broncos' running back Jamaal Charles, who was making his return to Arrowhead Stadium.

Charles finished with eight carries for 39 yards.

It's not the first time we've seen Peters just take the ball away from someone either.

Last year against Carolina Panthers' receiver Kelvin Benjamin, Peters did something similar late in the game, but this time, he picked it up and raced 45 yards the other way for the touchdown—beginning a barrage of big defensive plays for the Chiefs on the night.

The play gave the Chiefs an early 7-0 lead, and they would never trail in the game.

4. Rookie kicker Harrison Butker was money


Butker, who was signed off the Carolina Panthers practice squad before the Week 4 game against the Washington Redskins, connected on all five of his field goal attempts Monday night, including three in the fourth quarter.

Butker has now hit 18-straight field goals after missing the first of his career against the Redskins.

The guy was so money, and he doesn't even know it.

Butker now ranks fourth in franchise history with 18 made field goals as a rookie kicker, and he's also five shy of setting the franchise record for consecutive field goals made.

5. The rest of the turnovers were great, too


In addition to his forced fumble, which led to the scoop and score, Peters also had his NFL-leading 17th interception since coming into the league as the team's first-round pick (No. 18 overall) in 2015 on Monday night.

The interception, which came on one of several ill-advised passes from Siemian on the night, also came in the first quarter.

Peters, who had inside leverage on tight end Jeff Heuerman, didn't bite on the play-action, or the pump-fake, from Siemian, and basically just caught the pass thrown right to him, and he returned it eight yards.

The Chiefs would ultimately give it back on the ensuing drive after a Tyreek Hill pass was intercepted in the end zone on a play Reid laughed about to the media after the game—insinuating that play won't be called again.

De'Anthony Thomas also recovered a muffed punt, and cornerback Kenneth Acker, who got the start at right cornerback, and veteran safety Ron Parker, also chipped in with interceptions.

The Chiefs' five turnovers led to 13 points.

6. The matchup to watch was Mitch Schwartz and Von Miller, and it didn't disappoint

Miller finished with three tackles and for the first time in the last five games, was held without a sack, and much of that lack of production can be attributed to the guy lining up across from him for much of the night—Chiefs' right tackle Mitch Schwartz.

It was one of the matchups to watch coming into the night, and to hold one of the league's elite defensive players to a pretty quiet night means—as an offensive lineman—you had a fantastic night.

It was the first game this season that Miller was held without a quarterback hit, and it's the second time in four career matchups that Schwartz held him to without a hit.

7. Travis Kelce goes off against the Broncos, again


**In his two previous games last year against the Broncos, Kelce combined for 19 receptions for 266 yards and a touchdown, and he continued that level of success Monday night.

Kelce accounted for almost half of the Chiefs' total offense, hauling in seven passes for 133 yards and a touchdown.

The Chiefs had just 276 yards of offense against the league's No. 1 defense—the Broncos, who came into Monday's meeting with the Chiefs allowing an average of just 258 yards per game.

Kelce is one of just two players to record a 100-yard receiving game against the Broncos since last year, and he's now done it three times.

8. Justin Houston showed what makes him special

Justin Houston answered some questions Monday night.


After being limited at practice during the week, which made some fans nervous with his knee being listed as the reason—considering he's missed most of the last two seasons because of a knee injury, Houston was back to his usual dominant self on Monday night.

Houston finished with six tackles, two sacks, and three quarterback hits, and some of his best plays won't end up on a box score as he was constantly in the backfield and making things difficult for Siemian.

After the game, Reid mentioned that Houston was limited during the week and resting his knee because he had played almost 80 snaps on a short week against the Raiders the last time out.

They're just not wanting him to push too much considering he's still working himself back.

Late in the game, Houston also rested off to the side and gave way for rookie edge rusher Tanoh Kpassagnon to get some playing time. He had just four defensive snaps played this year before Monday's game.

9. Alex Smith hits career milestone, doesn't throw a pick, again


**Smith finished 14 of 31 passes for 202 yards and a touchdown, and in the process, surpassed the 30,000 passing yard mark for his career.

Smith now has 30,027 yards passing in his career—becoming just the 44th quarterback in NFL history to accumulate at least 30,000 career passing yards.

Smith's 29-yard touchdown pass to Kelce midway through the first quarter was the 16th of his season, which already surpasses his total from last season (15). He still hasn't thrown an interception this year.

10. Mitch Morse and Steven Nelson return to the field

It didn't take long for the Broncos to go after Nelson, who was making his debut after missing the first seven games of the year because of a "core muscle injury" suffered in training camp and the preseason.

Nelson was targeted on first two Broncos' passing plays, and both fell incomplete. He didn't allow a single reception in coverage all night.

Morse had missed the team's last five games as he was dealing with a foot injury.

The Chiefs did have two players leave with injuries.

Linebacker Dee Ford (back) and Albert Wilson (hamstring) both left early with "tightness" in their respective areas.

Photos from the Chiefs Week 8 matchup against the Broncos

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