The Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Cleveland Browns, 17-13, at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri on Sunday afternoon. With the victory combined with a loss by the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Chiefs have clinched a berth in the NFL playoffs.
"I'm proud of our football team, for the job that they did today," Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said after the game. "We don't really care if it's by 1 point or by 21 points. We were 1-5 at one time, so every one of these things, we appreciate. We respect the opponent for the job they did, but at the same time, it's tough to string a bunch of games together in the National Football League. This is the National Football League and we haven't forgotten about that."
Quarterback Alex Smith led the way for the Chiefs, going 15 of 22 for 125 yards passing, 2 touchdowns and 1 interception. He also had 54 yards rushing on 6 carries.
After losing the toss, the Chiefs began the game with the ball. Smith orchestrated a 7-minute-and-8-second drive capped off by an 11-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Jeremy Maclin. It was Maclin's 7th touchdown of the season.
"[Smith's] got lot of trust in himself down in the red zone, he's got a lot of trust in Jeremy in small windows, so he got him with it," Reid said. "I thought it was a great catch, it was a heck of a throw."
Cairo Santos added a 40-yard field goal and the Chiefs led 10-0 at the end of the first quarter.
In the second quarter, the Browns were driving at the Kansas City 40-yard line when cornerback Marcus Peters picked off QB Johnny Manziel for his 8th interception of the season, which ties a Chiefs rookie record.
With under two minutes left in the half, Smith and the Chiefs drove 56 yards down the field to add to their lead before the break. Smith connected with tight end Travis Kelce on a 13-yard pass for Kelce's 5th touchdown of the season.
Chiefs safety Daniel Sorensen blocked a Browns field goal attempt as time expired in the second quarter, and the Chiefs led 17-3 at half.
The Browns started the second half with possession. On the first play of the second half, Manziel ran the ball 34 yards into Kansas City territory, and eight plays later, running back Isaiah Crowell finished the drive with a 10-yard touchdown run to make it 17-10.
Cleveland's second possession of the half went for 21 plays and finished with a 36-yard field goal by Travis Coons to cut Kansas City's lead to 4 points.
Manziel and the Browns took back over possession with under 2 minutes remaining and no timeouts. Manziel drove Cleveland to the Kansas City 32-yard line, but the clock wound down and the Browns ran out of time.
"It's hard to win back-to-back games in the National Football League, so when you start stringing these things together, that's not an easy thing," Reid said. "To maintain that focus that you need to win in this league – very small margin between winning and losing. So that was probably the thing I'm most proud of for the group, is doing that. And it's not over, so it's just begun, so you've got to keep that in mind and you cherish these things, every one of them."
RB Charcandrick West had 14 carries for 62 yards rushing. Maclin had 5 receptions for 49 yards receiving and a touchdown. Ron Parker and Josh Mauga each had 7 tackles apiece for the Chiefs.
The Chiefs host the Oakland Raiders at Arrowhead Stadium next Sunday at 12 p.m.
Photos from Chiefs Week 16 matchup against the Browns