St. Joseph Post
JACKSONVILLE (AP) — Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs insist they're fine, despite another lackluster offensive effort.
Mahomes threw two touchdown passes, including one to returning star Travis Kelce, and the Chiefs overcame three early turnovers to beat Jacksonville 17-9 on Sunday for their third victory against the Jaguars in 10 months.
“You play bad and win, it’s a lot better than playing bad and losing,” Mahomes said. "So I was glad we were able to find a way to get a win at the end of the day, but a lot of stuff that we have to be better at.”
Kansas City was called on 12 penalties for 94 yards in stifling heat and humidity that caused numerous issues for fans baking in the sun and players cramping on the field.
“It’s still early in the season and you guys just saw the second game, bringing all the new pieces together,” Kelce said. “But right now, hats off to the defense, the way they’re planning to keep us in games. We love them for it. We got to stop shooting ourselves in the foot on offense.”
The Chiefs (1-1) won their eighth straight in the series and avoided becoming the first defending Super Bowl champions to start 0-2 since Denver in 1999.
The Jaguars (1-1), who insisted all week they owed the Chiefs because of a loss in the divisional round of the AFC playoffs in January, pretty much no-showed in their home opener.
The Jaguars certainly should have a better plan for All-Pro defensive tackle Chris Jones in a potential rematch.
Making his season debut after ending his holdout and signing a one-year contract, Jones dominated his one-on-one matchups. He manhandled rookie right tackle Anton Harrison and was equally effective against the rest of Jacksonville’s line. He finished with 1.5 sacks on five QB pressures.
With extra time to prepare following a loss to Detroit 10 days earlier in the NFL opener, the Chiefs had hoped to look a lot more like their normally dynamic selves on offense.
However, Richie James muffed a punt, Justin Watson fumbled and Mahomes threw an interception. Kadarius Toney, who dropped three passes in the opener, fumbled late in the third, but was able to scoop up the loose ball and avoid another turnover.
“Too many procedure penalties, turnovers," Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. “We’ll get that taken care of.”
Mahomes completed 29 of 41 passes for 305 yards. He found Kelce all alone in the end zone to extend KC’s lead to 14-6.
Kelce, who missed the opener because of a hyperextended knee, punted the ball into the end zone to celebrate. He finished with four catches on nine targets for 26 yards.
The Chiefs converted twice on fourth down and outgained Jacksonville 399 to 271 in total yards.
Chiefs right tackle Jawaan Taylor, who spent the first four years of his NFL career with Jacksonville, had a rough homecoming. Taylor was penalized five times and ultimately benched for a series. He was flagged twice for false starts, once for an illegal formation and twice for holding.
The Chiefs host the Chicago Bears next Sunday. Kickoff is set for 3:25 central. The game will be carried on KFEQ Radio (680, 95.3) and Q Country 92.7 in St. Joseph.