Red Zone

Halftime observations: Chiefs 14, Broncos 14

Chiefs tackles Donald Stephenson (79) and Jah Reid (75) watched as quarterback Alex Smith (11) was sacked by Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller (58) in the first quarter of Thursday’s football game at Arrowhead Stadium.
Chiefs tackles Donald Stephenson (79) and Jah Reid (75) watched as quarterback Alex Smith (11) was sacked by Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller (58) in the first quarter of Thursday’s football game at Arrowhead Stadium. deulitt@kcstar.com

1. Marcus Peters is everything the Chiefs hoped for and more. His ball skills and anticipation led to a pick-6 in the second quarter that gave the Chiefs a 14-0 lead. The Chiefs’ pass rush deserves an assist — Peters’ pick was created by blitz pressure, and the Broncos have been having a hard time blocking Justin Houston all night.

2. Peyton Manning is not done. He’s thrown some wobbly passes and been inaccurate downfield but the 10-play, 70-yard scoring drive he led after his pick-6 shows he can still will his team down the field. This is going to be an entertaining second half.

3. The Chiefs could be far ahead in this game, but the turnovers — three in all — have been crippling. Jamaal Charles and De’Anthony Thomas have lost fumbles, and quarterback Alex Smith threw an interception deep in his own territory. Charles’ red-zone fumble cost the Chiefs a scoring opportunity, but he made up for it with his outstanding 34-yard touchdown run that gave the Chiefs a 7-0 lead. It will be interesting to see if Smith and Thomas can do the same.

4. The Chiefs are going to have a hard time blocking DeMarcus Ware and Von Miller. Those two have been a terror off the edge. It will be interesting to see how coach Andy Reid handles them in the second half.

5. The Broncos’ undisciplined play — four personal foul penalties — has come back to bite them. Kudos to the Chiefs for not retaliating in a stupid way. Denver is trying to push them around, just like they have in past years, but the best way to make them pay is on the scoreboard.

To reach Terez A. Paylor, call 816-234-4489 or send email to tpaylor@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter @TerezPaylor. Tap here to download the new Red Zone Extra app for iOS and Android devices.

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