The Kansas City Chiefs dropped a tough on Monday, falling to the Philadelphia Eagles, 21-17, at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium.
Here are some quick notes from the loss.
1. Despite the loss, the Chiefs' defense was outstanding yet again.
The Chiefs held Philadelphia – which entered the game as the No. 3 scoring offense in the NFL – to just 238 total yards and a 3-for-11 mark on third down. The Eagles punted a season-high seven times and scored just 21 points, which marked their second-lowest output of the season. Kansas City also sacked Eagles' quarterback Jalen Hurts a season-high five times, forcing Philadelphia to go "three-and-out" on five occasions.
It wasn't enough in the end, but the performance of the defense was nothing short of spectacular. This may very well be the top defense in the NFL.
2. Cornerback Trent McDuffie had one of the best games of his young career.
McDuffie was tremendous on Monday, tallying four tackles, two sacks, a pass defensed and a forced fumble. The second-year cornerback leads the NFL in forced fumbles with five.
Additionally, McDuffie is just the fourth defensive back in franchise history to record two or more sacks in a game, joining Javier Arenas (2 in 2010), Eric Berry (2 in 2010) and Ron Parker (2 in 2015).
3. Self-inflicted miscues prevented the Chiefs from pulling away on Monday.
The Chiefs had chances to put the game away on Monday night, but self-inflicted mistakes ultimately got in the way. That list of miscues included two red zone giveaways, seven penalties and drops in critical situations.
"Today, it was penalties and miscues," said quarterback Patrick Mahomes. "We've got to find ways to score at the end of the day. The defense is playing great football – it has been all year. Offensively, we've got to find ways to finish football games."
4. To their credit, the Eagles made plays to win the game in the end.
Kansas City led for the majority of the game and seemed to dictate terms throughout, but to their credit, Philadelphia found a way to rally in the end. Hurts – despite some struggles early – rushed for a 10-yard score late in the third quarter and a 1-yard, go-ahead touchdown midway through the fourth.
5. The Chiefs' goals are all still in front of them, but they'll need to bounce back quickly.
Monday's loss stings, but it's worth pointing out that the Chiefs' goals are all still right there in front of them. The Chiefs are currently 7-3 and a half-game behind the Baltimore Ravens for the top seed in the AFC playoff field, but all things being equal, Kansas City owns the tie-breaker over Baltimore due to the Ravens' three conference losses (the Chiefs only have one). Additionally, the Chiefs own head-to-head tie-breakers over the Jaguars and Dolphins, who are each 7-3 as well.
It's all to say that the Chiefs remain in an excellent spot in the standings, but they still need to take care of business moving forward. Fortunately, Patrick Mahomes is 15-3 in his career following a loss, and he'll aim to continue that success this upcoming Sunday as the Chiefs travel to Las Vegas to take on the Raiders.