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Chiefs vs. Broncos: 12 Observations

Here are 12 things that stood out during the Chiefs loss to the Broncos on Thursday night

1. Despite an unbelievable atmosphere of football, Chiefs fall 31-24 to the Broncos


The fans at Arrowhead Stadium did everything they could in providing a second-to-none atmosphere of football on Thursday night, but the Denver Broncos would leave with the 31-24 victory after scoring 14 points in the final 35 seconds to come back and beat the Chiefs in stunning fashion.

2. Five turnovers makes it difficult to win a football game

Alex Smith had two passes intercepted, Jamaal Charles fumbled twice and De'Anthony Thomas also lost a fumble as the Kansas City Chiefs couldn't overcome the consistent challenges they created for themselves.

The five turnovers from the Chiefs offense led to 14 points for the Broncos, which ultimately made the difference in the game.

3. The pregame festivities, highlighted by Eric Berry's introduction, were unbelievable

The Chiefs wore the red-on-red uniforms, there was a B2 Stealth Bomber flyover and after his battle with Hodgkin's Lymphoma, safety Eric Berry was the final player to run onto the field during pregame introductions.

Between the pregame introductions for Mike DeVito, Derrick Johnson and Berry, all of whom missed considerable time last season, the crowd at Arrowhead Stadium was rocking to start this game.

The Chiefs also honored members of the Super Bowl I and IV teams with a special ceremony at halftime.

4. Marcus Peters welcomes himself to Arrowhead in a big way

Last week in his first NFL game, and on his first NFL play, Marcus Peters picked-off Houston Texans quarterback Brian Hoyer.

It was a memorable way to begin his career.

On Thursday night, Peters made a fantastic play that immediately endeared himself to the home crowd and all of Chiefs Kingdom. Midway through the second quarter, Peters jumped in front of a Peyton Manning pass and returned it 55-yards for a touchdown.

It was the biggest moment of the night for the Chiefs and gave them an early 14-0 lead.

Peters finished the game with five tackles, four passes defensed and the one interception.

5. Mike DeVito's return highlighted by a key sack on Peyton Manning

While many players made their return to Arrowhead Stadium on Thursday night, veteran defensive lineman Mike DeVito made his presence felt early in the game. 

On first-and-10 from their own 9-yard line, the Broncos second offensive drive of the game began with a DeVito sack of Peyton Manning.


After the sack, the Broncos would ultimately go three-and-out on that drive as the Chiefs defense really set the tone early in the game.

DeVito, along with linebacker Derrick Johnson, suffered season-ending injuries in Week 1 of last season and couldn't wait to return to Arrowhead Stadium and play in front of the home crowd.

6. The flags were flying all night long

In the first half alone, the Broncos were called for three unnecessary roughness penalties and one roughing the passer penalty.

All in all, the Chiefs and Broncos totaled 17 penalties for 145 yards in the game.

After a late hit on quarterback Alex Smith by linebacker Von Miller, the Chiefs offense responded by driving down the field in four plays and ultimately taking the lead with Jamaal Charles' 34-yard touchdown run.


Charles finished the first half with 10 rushes for 74 yards and a touchdown.

7. Alex Smith interception late in the first half leads to points

On a short pass attempt with a little more than two minutes on the clock in the first half, Broncos cornerback Aqib Talib jumped in front of a Smith pass and made the diving interception, setting up the Broncos second touchdown of the game that tied it 14-14 going into halftime.

It was just a few plays later that Manning would find tight end Virgil Green for the 1-yard touchdown reception.

Talib made plays for the Broncos defense in Week 1 as it was his pick-6 of Joe Flacco late in the third quarter that ultimately gave them the Broncos the victory. 

8. First drive in second half leads to Cairo Santos field goal

Highlighted by a 30-yard strike from Alex Smith to Jeremy Maclin, the Chiefs offense responded after the Broncos finished the first half on a 14-0 run and grabbed back some of the momentum that Peters gave the crowd with a drive that ended with a Cairo Santos 35-yard field goal.

The Chiefs had a 17-14 lead after their first drive of the second half.

Photos from the Chiefs home opener matchup against the Denver Broncos

9. Third down struggles for offense

The Chiefs finished the game 0 for 7 on third down, which made it difficult to sustain any kind of momentum offensively.

10. Dustin Colquitt's punting kept field position advantage with Chiefs

While the defenses were trading blows back and forth and the offenses struggled to consistently move the football, Colquitt was busy bombing punts to keep the field position battle on the Chiefs side.

He finished the game with four punts for 210 yards (52.5 yards per punt average).

11. Justin Houston is tough to block (not a unique observation)



Nothing earth-shattering here, but it's just special to witness a player that everyone knows is a phenomenal pass rusher and yet he still can't be stopped.

Houston finished the game with six tackles, two sacks, three quarterback hits and a pass defensed.  

12. Rookie TE James O' Shaughnessy shows his ability

The first two catches of O'Shaughnessy's NFL career went for 24 and 30 yards.

Midway through the fourth quarter and with the game tied at 17, O'Shaughnessy showed some pretty impressive burst to accelerate past a would-be tackler to pick up a huge gain for the Chiefs offense in a key situation. A few plays later, Alex Smith would be hit as he released the ball and the Broncos would intercept their second pass of the night. This one from Chris Harris Jr.

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