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Sports Mahomes' feet, arms, lift Chiefs to Super Bowl over Titans

02:10  20 january  2020
02:10  20 january  2020 Source:   msn.com

Chiefs rally from 24-0 hole to beat Texans 51-31 in playoffs

  Chiefs rally from 24-0 hole to beat Texans 51-31 in playoffs KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Chiefs are back in the AFC championship game. How they returned to the brink of their first Super Bowl appearance in 50 years was unlike anything anybody could have imagined. After digging a 24-0 hole against Houston early in the second quarter Sunday, Patrick Mahomes and the rest of the high-flying Chiefs embarked on the biggest comeback in franchise history. Their young superstar proceeded to throw for 321 yards and five touchdowns, Travis Kelce and Damien Williams reached the end zone three times apiece, and Kansas City reeled off 41 consecutive points in a 51-31 victory over the Texans in the divisional round of the playoffs.

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  Mahomes' feet, arms, lift Chiefs to Super Bowl over Titans © Provided by The Canadian Press

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — With his best imitation of a tightrope walker, Patrick Mahomes high-wired the Kansas City Chiefs into their first Super Bowl in a half-century.

Oh sure, Mahomes did his usual superb job passing, but it was his 27-yard tap dance down the left sideline late in the first half that gave the Chiefs their first lead. From there, they outran the run-oriented Titans and star back Derrick Henry for a 35-24 victory Sunday in the AFC championship.

At last, for the first time since 1970 and the third time overall, the Chiefs (14-4) are Super Bowl bound.

In two weeks in Miami, they will play the winner of the NFC title game between Green Bay and San Francisco.

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“I mean, it’s amazing. It really is,” Mahomes said. "To be here, to be a part of Chiefs Kingdom and to be able to do it here at Arrowhead, these people deserve it. And, we’re not done yet."

Adding to the joy of the achievement, coach Andy Reid and owner Clark Hunt accepted the Lamar Hunt Trophy — named after his father — emblematic of the AFC title. It was handed over to them by Chiefs Hall of Famer Bobby Bell, with Mahomes and safety Tyrann Mathieu jumping for joy on the makeshift stage.

a group of football players in front of a crowd© Provided by The Canadian Press

Next up: chasing the Vince Lombardi Trophy.

"Chiefs Kingdom, we are going to the Super Bowl,'' Hunt said.

“It's awesome,'' Reid said, asking the crowd to chant ”How about those Chiefs?''

The Chiefs lost in the very first Super Bowl, 35-10 to the Green Bay Packers. But they charged back three years later to beat Minnesota 23-7 behind Len Dawson, Otis Taylor and animated coach Hank Stram famously urging his team to “keep matriculating the ball down the field, boys!”

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After an upset over the Baltimore Ravens, the Tennessee Titans face the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC championship game. In the NFC, the Green Bay Packers

The Kansas City Chiefs have reached the Super Bowl for the first time since 1969 after beating the 35-24 Tennessee Titans at Arrowhead Stadium in the And once again, Patrick Mahomes led his team with distinction as he threw three touchdowns and ran for another. The Chiefs also stifled the Titans ’

As they had done in their past three "elimination'' games, the sixth-seeded Titans (11-8) got started quickly. The difference at Arrowhead as opposed to Houston, New England and Baltimore was that the Chiefs had Mahomes, Tyreek Hill, Sammy Watkins and Damien Williams on offence, and a vastly upgraded defence from when they lost in last year's AFC title game. Henry was held to 7 yards rushing in the second half.

"They were doubling all these guys,'' Mahomes said of his spectacular TD run on which he barely stayed in bounds. "I just ran it and got some good blocking at the end and found a way to get in the end zone.''

A week after they overcame a 24-0 deficit against Houston, the Chiefs had to rally again.

Down 10-0 and 17-7, Kansas City didn't flinch, building a 35-17 lead while controlling the clock with a strong ground game. Naturally, Mahomes complemented that with sharp passing, spreading the ball on short and deep throws. The dagger came with a 60-yard completion to Watkins for the Chiefs' 28th straight point midway in the final period.

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"The Tennessee Titans have been playing unbelievable.. But Patrick Mahomes is on another level. I just think The Kansas City Chiefs are too much. Late in the game it'll become crystal clear to the Titans that we've had a great season, but our Cinderella season is over ."

The Kansas City Chiefs reached the Super Bowl for the first time since the 1969 season following a stunning display from Patrick Mahomes . Tyreek Hill had two receiving touchdowns and Sammy Watkins found the end zone off a 60-yard reception from Mahomes to end the Titans ' impressive

Mahomes thrust both arms in the air as the crowd sang "I Want To Dance With Somebody.''

That somebody will be either the 49ers or Packers in two weeks. They were deciding the NFC crown later Sunday in California.

After taking a 3-0 lead on Greg Joseph's first field goal — with Tennessee's penchant for scoring in the red zone, he hadn't been called upon in his previous four games with the team — the Titans got a huge break. Bashaud Breeland appeared to make a diving interception, but replay review showed the ball hitting the ground.

Helped by consecutive offside penalties and a a fourth-down pass to Adam Humphries for his first career playoff reception, the Titans converted on, what else, Henry's 4-yard run.

Then the Chiefs got rolling, scoring on three successive series. Hill took it in on a shovel pass, later beat top Titans cornerback Logan Ryan for a 20-yard reception, and Mahomes finished the half with his brilliant jaunt down the left sideline with half the Tennessee defence seemingly expecting him to step out of bounds.

That gave the Chiefs a 21-17 lead. It went to 28-17 on Williams' 3-yard run to cap a seven-minute drive. Then Watkins toasted Logan for the clinching long pass.

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Henry was held to 69 yards on 19 carries after rushing for 588 yards in the past three games as an unstoppable force.

“That’s what we were able to do coming in,” Titans coach Mike Vrabel said of his team's running game entering the AFC title game.

“We weren’t (able to do that against KC). I felt we competed all the way there until the end. We got a stop, the offence gets the ball back and they fought. You don’t prepare these types of speeches to talk to the team about at the end of the season or to talk to you guys (reporters) about the end of the season. That’s where we’re at.”

The Chiefs easily outrushed the Titans on Sunday. Mahomes had 53 of those yards and also was 23 for 35 for 294 yards passing.

REID'S RETURN

Reid goes back to the Super Bowl for the first time since the 2004 season, when his Eagles lost to New England. That gap is second longest to Dick Vermeil's hiatus

TRICKERY

Last week, Henry threw a jump pass for a touchdown against Baltimore. On Sunday, Dennis Kelly emulated his coach, Mike Vrabel. He sneaked free for Ryan Tannehill's lob, falling back awkwardly but holding on for Tennessee's second TD. The backup tackle is the only offensive lineman since 2000 with two TDs receiving in a season. He also had one against Jacksonville.

Vrabel caught 12 touchdown passes as a linebacker, including one in the Super Bowl when his Patriots beat Reid's Eagles.

FOURTH DOWNS

Displaying the gambling nature of both coaches, fourth-down conversions were key on early scoring drives. Humphries, who missed the last six games with an ankle problem, caught a 3-yarder on fourth-and-2 at the KC 29. Two plays later, Henry scored.

On the Chiefs' ensuing possession, they went on fourth-and-2 from the Titans 28. Travis Kelce's 4-yard reception continued a march to Hill's first TD.

UP NEXT

Titans: Figuring out if they ran out of gas or were beaten by a more talented team as they head into the off-season.

Chiefs: The Tomahawk Chop will be heard at Hard Rock Stadium in the Super Bowl.

___

More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL

Barry Wilner, The Associated Press

49ers' Saleh: Chiefs built roster 'from the Olympic relay team' .
The Kansas City Chiefs' offense has been one of the most dangerous units in the NFL since Patrick Mahomes took over at quarterback, and the San Francisco 49ers are well aware of that ahead of Super Bowl LIV. "Very explosive," 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh said of the Chiefs' offense, according to Jennifer Lee Chan of NBC Sports. "Mahomes has gotten better. They're at every position - it almost looks like they got their roster from the Olympic relay team and threw them all on the field. Not to say that they can't run routes or can't catch either, because they can do that."They are a special group and you can see why they are there.

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