Chiefs hold off Raiders to take control of AFC West

Since 2004, the Chiefs have only won the division once.

On Thursday night though, all three phases of the Chiefs' game needed to come through to help the team snag a win.

It didn't seem to change anything: He was on the losing end for the fifth straight time.

Facing a 4th and 1, Chiefs head coach Andy Reid elected to go for it instead of kicking a 45-yard field goal. If that were the case, Kansas City would be ahead of Oakland based on a head-to-head sweep and Oakland would be ahead of Buffalo based on their win in Week 13.

Mack had a strip-sack for the third straight game, and a sack in his eighth straight dating to the Raiders' loss to Kansas City in October.

It looked like the Raiders defense would build on the quick start by forcing a 3rd and 10 on the Chiefs first offensive possession, but veteran quarterback Alex Smith found receiver Chris Conley for a big 39-yard completion to extend the drive with David Amerson in coverage.

So, with that in mind, the Raiders-Chiefs competition will continue through season's end. Pittsburgh's best ticket remains the AFC North title over Baltimore, but would make big wild-card strides with a win at Buffalo on Sunday.

It is unclear of the direction of the punt was intentional, but just before the snap, Hill drifted over to the left sideline and King may have been trying to punt away from him.

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The cold made a lot creak Thursday inside Arrowhead Stadium. And a year ago, they went to Houston and came away with their first playoff victory in more than two decades, only to lose at New England the following week. However, Kansas City's defense held strong and allowed only a field goal.

Before the Carrie interception in the first minute of the third quarter, Smith was 12-of-17 for 207 yards. In the receiving end, Dontrelle Inman posted 71 yards and a touchdown in six receptions while Tyrell Williams added 68 yards in two receptions while Antonio Gates added 61 yards in five receptions.

Then, Hill struck again. On Thursday, as the Chiefs were setting up to receive a punt midway through the second quarter, Hill returned the punt 78 yards for a touchdown that sent all of Arrowhead into a frenzy. The last National Football League rookie to accomplish that feat was Gale Sayers in 1965.

Not all of the incomplete passes were Carr's fault. However, Kansas City has a major tiebreaker edge with their two victories over Oakland this season. Now the 5-foot-10, 185-pound athlete is being asked to out-jump defensive backs for acrobatic catches.

Perhaps the Chiefs' most important area of success came in the red zone.

Raiders beat reporter Jimmy Durkin was on the flight from the bay area to Missouri and tweeted the surprising announcement from the cockpit.

Early on in the year I thought the correct comparison for Hill was early 2000s Dante Hall - a breakout special teams weapon who had the potential to make a few plays every week as a receiver.

Matchup: Houston Texans (6-6) vs. Indianapolis Colts (6-6) The Texans, Colts and Titans are all at 6-6 in the AFC South, but Houston is the division leader thanks to their 3-0 division record, which includes wins of Indianapolis and Tennessee.


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