The Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Denver Broncos, 27-24, on Sunday to wrap up the regular season with a 10-6 record.
The Chiefs won their final four games of the season, winning the AFC West for a second-consecutive year, and will take on the Tennessee Titans (9-7) on Saturday at Arrowhead Stadium.
Here are some quick facts following Sunday’s victory.
1. Quarterback Patrick Mahomes impressed in his debut
Mahomes made the first start of his career on Sunday, displaying plenty of the ability that enticed the Chiefs to select him with the 10th overall pick in last year’s draft.
The rookie signal caller completed 22 of 35 passes for 284 yards and an interception on the afternoon, leading Kansas City on a 67-yard, game-winning scoring drive in the contest’s closing minutes.
His 284 yards through the air were the second-most in a single game by a Chiefs’ passer playing in their first season.
2. Rookie tailback Kareem Hunt took home the NFL rushing title
Hunt carried the ball just once on Sunday, but it was enough to make some history.
The rookie tailback dashed for a 35-yard touchdown on Kansas City’s opening drive, moving him into the league lead with 1,327 yards on the ground.
Here’s more on Hunt’s accomplishment from the Elias Sports Bureau:
Kareem Hunt ran 35 yards for a touchdown on his only carry in the Chiefs’ 27–24 win at Denver. But that was enough to pass Todd Gurley to capture the 2017 rushing title. Gurley held the league lead in rushing yards coming into Sunday’s games, but neither he nor Le’veon Bell, the leader through Week 15, played on the final week of the season.
There were only three other seasons in which three different players held the NFL lead in rushing yards after each of the last three weeks: 1943–Harry Clarke, Jack Hinkle, and Bill Paschal; 1990–Marion Butts, Thurman Thomas, and Barry Sanders; and 1991–Thurman Thomas, Barry Sanders, and Emmitt Smith.
Hunt’s score was also significant, as it marked the 11th time that the he found the end zone on the year.
3. Wide receiver Albert Wilson had the best game of his career
Wilson caught 10 passes for 147 yards on Sunday, shattering his previous career-bests in both categories.
It wrapped up what was a career season for the fourth-year wide receiver, as he set single-season highs in both receiving yards (554) and touchdowns (3).
Many of those catches came when it mattered most.
- A handful of Chiefs made their first professional starts on Sunday
Wide receiver Jehu Chesson, linebackers Ukeme Eligwe and Tanoh Kpassagnon, defensive tackle Justin Hamilton and safety Leon McQuay joined Mahomes in making their first professional starts on Sunday.
Kpassagnon, Kansas City’s second round pick in last year’s draft, recorded two sacks on the afternoon. Eligwe also tallied his first-career sack.
5. Linebacker Ramik Wilson found the end zone for the first time in his career
Defensive tackle Chris Jones jarred the ball loose from Broncos’ quarterback Paxton Lynch and Wilson was right there to pick it up, bringing the fumble back 11 yards for the score.
It marked Wilson’s first-career touchdown and Kansas City’s third fumble recovery for a score this year.
6. Fullback Anthony Sherman finally had a chance to pile up some stats
Sherman is often responsible for the dirty work on offense, creating opportunities for others to make plays. He finally had an opportunity to rack up some stats of his own on Sunday, carrying the ball a career-high 14 times for 40 yards and a touchdown.
It marked the seven-year veteran’s first-career score on the ground.
7. Linebacker Terrance Smith also checked a personal milestone
Smith notched his first-career interception on Sunday, picking off Lynch in the closing seconds of the first half.
It was the first of three Kansas City takeaways on the afternoon.
*8. Kicker Harrison Butker kicked his way to another franchise record *
The rookie kicker converted two more field goals on Sunday, including the game-winner as time expired.
Butker already owned the team record for field goals made in a season, and with nine points on Sunday, he passed Nick Lowery (139 in 1990) for the most points by a kicker in a single-season in franchise history.
9. Punter Dustin Colquitt is still among the best to do it
Colquitt booted a 77-yard punt in the closing minutes of the first half, marking the second-longest punt of his career. It was second only to an 81-yard punt against San Diego in 2007.
The 13-year veteran’s 420 punts inside the 20-yard line are a franchise best and the fourth-most in NFL history.
10. It was a cold one
The Chiefs played a strong game in all three phases on Sunday, and they did so in some less than comfortable conditions.
Postgame facts and stats from the Chiefs Week 17 win over the Broncos.