Broncos vs. Chiefs Open Thread/Live Blog | Week 7
The time has come. With the Kansas City Chiefs rolling into town, the Denver Broncos will be served the ultimate litmus test.
It might be counter-intuitive considering the Broncos' nine-game losing streak to the Chiefs but the results of Week 7's AFC West throwdown will reveal just how far Denver has come and how close this team is to competing.
As the reigning World Champs, the Chiefs are the juggernaut. It'll take an inspired performance in order to keep this game close enough for Drew Lock and company to be within striking distance of a win in the fourth quarter.
It can be done, though. Chiefs aren't invincible or infallible. Meanwhile, the Broncos are as healthy as they'll get this year, with five injured studs having returned to the lineup over the last two weeks.
It's going to be a fun game to watch.
Meanwhile, join us as we live-blog and discuss KCvsDEN here in our weekly Open Thread. Dive into the conversation — it's easy — by simply going to the top of the site and in the bottom right-hand corner of the Mile High Huddle logo, click the follow button.
You can log in with Facebook or Google and either way, it's free. From there, sound off in the comment section and share your takes and observations with our staff, subscribers, and fellow members of the MHH community as we react to the game in real-time.
What to Watch For
• RB Melvin Gordon needs 82 receiving yards to reach 2,000 receiving yards in his career.
• S Kareem Jackson needs one pass defensed to become the 13th player (9th active) since he entered the league in 2010 to record 100 passes defensed.
• Jerry Jeudy needs 34 yards to become the second Broncos rookie WR to reach 300 receiving yards by his sixth game (Eddie Royal - 2008, 392 yds.).
• K Brandon McManus needs 21 points to pass Matt Prater (2007-13) for the third-most points (682) in franchise history.
• CB Michael Ojemudia needs one forced fumble to become the ninth rookie cornerback to force three fumbles in a single season.
• WR Tim Patrick needs 100 yards receiving to match Rod Smith (200) for the longest consecutive streak of 100-yard receiving efforts by an undrafted Broncos pass catcher in team annals and 100 receiving yards to record the longest consecutive stretch with 100 yards receiving by a Bronco since Demaryius Thomas (7 games; 2014).
Dalton Risner is active for the Broncos, which likely means he's starting at left guard.
Phillip Lindsay loses one yard on the opening play from scrimmage with Willie Gay making a nice play.
On 2nd-&-11 , Jerry Jeudy jumps off-sides.
Lock throws to Noah Fant on 2nd-&-16 for a 3-yard gain.
On third-and-long, Lock has to throw it away. Punt.
On first down, it's a reverse to Mecole Hardman for a 13-yard gain.
On 2nd-&-10, after Shelby Harris pressures Mahomes to force a throw-away, Mahomes hits Hardman for a 19-yard gain.
On the ensuing play, the Broncos miss four tackles on Clyde Edwards-Helaire and romps in for an 11-yard touchdown. The extra point is good.
Chiefs cut through the Broncos' defense like a hot knife through butter, covering 68 yards in eight plays. Vic Fangio still doesn't have Mahomes and Andy Reid figured out.
Chiefs 7, Broncos 0
Broncos go three-and-out again. Punt.
Nick Keizer is hit by Alexander Johnson, fumbles. Recovered by Bryce Callahan.
Lock hits Tim Patrick for 27-yard gain. It's a questionable catch but the Broncos are smart enough to get the ball snapped before Chiefs can challenge it.
On 3rd-&-Goal from the Chiefs' 2-yard line, the Broncos call timeout to think about it. The play-call is a fake hand-off up the gut, with Lock keeping it and beating his man to the pylon. Touchdown.
Brandon McManus, after earning AFC Special Teams Player of the Week for two consecutive games, misses the extra point.
Chiefs 7, Broncos 6
On 1st-&-10, LeVeon Bell picks up 17 yards.
Mahomes hits Hardman for a 38-yard gain, setting up the Chiefs at the Broncos' 20-yard line. Michael Ojemudia in coverage.
On 3rd-&-4, Bradley Chubb gets a free rush and sacks Mahomes. Harrison Butker hits the 40-yard field goal. Chiefs extend their lead.
Chiefs 10, Broncos 6
On 1st-&-10, Lindsay picks up 14 yards with Jeremy Cox lead-blocking as the fullback.
On 2nd-&-10, Melvin Gordon picks up seven yards but right tackle Demar Dotson penalized for holding.
On 2nd-&-20, Lock hits Gordon for a 2-yard gain.
On 3rd-&-18, Lock dumps it off to Gordon, who picks up 14 yards but fumbles. Tyrann Mathieu recovers at midfield. Mahomes is in business.
On 1st-&-10, Mahomes looks for the dagger, targeting Tyreek Hill deep. Incomplete.
End of first quarter
Chiefs 10, Broncos 6
Dre'Mont Jones sacks Mahomes on third down. Chiefs forced to punt.
Tommy Townsend's 57-yard is downed on the Broncos' 1-yard line.
Lock runs the sneak on first down, picking up two yards.
Gordon picks up six yards on second down.
On 3rd-&-2 out of the gun, Lock hits Jeudy, who makes a man miss, picking up seven yards and moving the chains.
Lock goes deep to Jeudy, who stops in the middle of the field, way incomplete.
On 2nd-&-10, Lindsay picks up 20 yards on a great, well-blocked play with great vision by the runner.
Lindsay picks up nine yards on the ensuing first down.
Gordon moves the chains on second down, picking up four yards.
Lock sacked on first down, a total coverage sack. Brings up 2nd-&-13.
Lock hit as he throws, picked off by Daniel Sorensen who returns it 50 yards to the house. Chiefs extend lead.
Chiefs 17, Broncos 6
On first down, Lindsay picks up 19 yards again. Lindsay picks up six yards on the ensuing first down, bringing up 2nd-&-4.
Lock hits Nick Vannett for a 19-yard gain, moving well into Chiefs' territory.
Gordon gets nothing on first down.
Lock hits Albert Okwuegbunam on second down, who stretches for a 6-yard gain.
On 3rd-&-4, Lock throws way off-target to Fant. Incomplete.
McManus hits the 43-yard field goal in the wind.
Chiefs 17, Broncos 9
Byron Pringle returns the ensuing kickoff 102 yards to the house.
Chiefs 24, Broncos 9
On 3rd-&-4, Lock's throw is tipped and falls incomplete. It's the third three-and-out. Punt. It's mercifully fair-caught.
Clyde-Helaire Picks up 27 yards on first down with a monster wide-open hole. Are Broncos shutting down emotionally?
Chubb shaken up on the play.
On 3rd-&-5 from the Broncos' 45-yard line, Chubb gets pressure and Mahomes fires incomplete. Chiefs to punt.
Lindsay picks up five yards on first down but is shaken up on a huge helmet-to-helmet hit by Sorenson.
Gordon picks up 10 yards on second down.
Lock sacked on first down.
Lock hits Okwuegbunam for a 17-yard gain on 2nd-&-18.
Gordon moves the chains, picks up eight yards.
Lock hits DaeSean Hamilton for a 13-yard gain on first down. A flag falls. Penalty on Chiefs for defensive holding. Declined.
Lock misses the pressure off the right side and is sacked. Looked like a miscue on the protection.
On fourth down with time running out, Lock hits KJ Hamler for 21-yard gain. It's not enough. End of quarter.
Chiefs 24, Broncos 9
Malik Reed sacks Mahomes on first down.
On 3rd-&-19, Mahomes hits Hill for 15-yard gain. Not enough. Punt.
Phillip Lindsay ruled out with a concussion. He finishes with 79 yards on nine carries.
Broncos trying to get it going on the ground with Gordon.
On 1st-&-10, Pat Shurmur gets cute, runs a flea-flicker. Gordon, however, pitches back the ball way over Lock's head. Fumble recovered by Chiefs' Frank Clark.
Broncos defense holds. Butker connects to extend Chiefs' lead.
Chiefs 27, Broncos 9
Broncos get 11 yards on two hand-offs to Gordon on first and second down.
On 3rd-&-9, Lock hits Jeudy, who makes a nice move short of the sticks to pick up the first down.
On 1st-&-10, Broncos penalized for 12 men in the huddle. Move the ball back five yards.
On 3rd-&-5, Lock throws high and off Gordon's out-stretch hands. Incomplete.
With the ball on Kansas City 45-yard line, the Broncos shockingly opt to go for it on 4th-&-5. The pass goes quickly to Hamler on the left sideline, but he's tackled short of the sticks at the Chiefs' 42-yard line. Turnover on downs.
Chiefs moving the ball.
But on 3rd-&-3, Fangio sends pressure and Mahomes fires for the end zone incomplete. Field goal is good.
Chiefs 30, Broncos 9
Broncos moving the ball to end the third quarter. Gordon stuffed for no gain on 2nd-&-4.
End of third quarter.
On 3rd-&-4, Lock throws the slant to Hamler, who bobbles it up into the air and into the hands of Mathieu. Interception.
Chiefs in business to extend their lead with more points.
On 2nd-&-10 from the 10-yard line, Mahomes hits Hill on a shallow crosser with one man to beat — Justin Simmons — who misses the tackle. Hill waltzes in for the touchdown. Extra point is good.
Chiefs 37, Broncos 9
Broncos go 75 yards on nine plays, punctuate drive with a Gordon 3-yard touchdown plunge.
Chiefs 37, Broncos 16
Broncos try an on-sides kick, it fails miserably and Demarcus Robinson returns it 21 yards to the Denver 21-yard line.
Chad Henne replaces Mahomes at quarterback.
Broncos get a stop but Shelby Harris gets flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Two plays later, Henne runs it in for six. Touchdown. Chiefs extend blowout.
Chiefs 43, Broncos 16
Lock gets to run a two-minute offense. Or maybe the Broncos just kneel on it.
An ugly final series and the Broncos give up the ghost with Lock firing way incomplete on 4th-&-10.
Chiefs will kneel it out.
End of game. Broncos still way off from competing for anything meaningful in the NFL.
Chiefs 43, Broncos 16