By TOMMY REZAC
St. Joseph Post
Evan McPherson kicked a 20-yard field goal as time expired, and the Cincinnati Bengals (11-5) earned their first AFC North title and postseason appearance in six years with a wild 34-31 win over the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday.
Rookie Ja’Marr Chase had a franchise-record and NFL rookie record 266 yards receiving and three touchdowns on 11 catches for Cincinnati. Joe Burrow threw for 466 yards and four scores while outdueling Patrick Mahomes, and the Bengals rallied from three, 14-point deficits against the AFC West champions.
Chiefs safety Tyrann Mathieu says the defense could have made better adjustments.
"I still feel like we could have responded a lot better defensively," he said. "Those guys were prepared. I just didn't think we responded the way we were prepared to respond."
The Chiefs were also called on 10 penalties for 83 yards - several of which aided Cincinnati in their final drive of the game.
Kansas City’s eight-game winning streak was snapped and it fell behind Tennessee for the top seed in the AFC. The Chiefs (11-5) now have to beat Denver next week and hope Houston can knock off AFC South champion Tennessee to get it back.
Kansas City had won eight straight going into Sunday. Mahomes had won 26 consecutive games as the starter in the months of November, December and January.
The Chiefs are at Denver on Saturday at 3:30 central. The game will be carried on Q Country 92.7 FM in St. Joseph. Pregame coverage will start at 2:30.