Red Zone

Game report: Chiefs 34, Raiders 20

Chiefs defensive back Tyvon Branch returned an interception for a touchdown in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game against the Raiders.
Chiefs defensive back Tyvon Branch returned an interception for a touchdown in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game against the Raiders.

First quarter

Key play: On third and 9 at the Raiders’ 25, Alex Smith made a key first-down throw to Jeremy Maclin. The Chiefs scored two plays later.

Key stat: The Raiders outgained the Chiefs 108-57.

Second quarter

Key play: Charles Woodson stripped the ball from Travis Kelce and returned it 38 yards to set up a go-ahead touchdown.

Key stat: Oakland’s average first-half drive started at the 37-yard line.

Third quarter

Key play: A third-down roughing-the-passer call on Derrick Johnson led to Oakland’s only touchdown in the third quarter.

Key stat: The Chiefs were balanced, attempting 17 passes to 18 rushes.

Fourth quarter

Key play: Tyvon Branch’s interception gave the Chiefs a 34-20 lead and sealed the game.

Key stat: The Chiefs were penalized 11 times for 88 yards, compared to Oakland’s four times for 21 yards.

The grades

Rushing Offense


Spencer Ware and Charcandrick West split the workload fairly evenly, with West logging nine carries and Ware seven. The Chiefs rushed 22 times for 89 yards, an average of 4 yards per carry. So, it could have been better, but they did rush for two touchdowns and fared well enough to win.

Passing Offense


Alex Smith carried the mail again, and he’s been the model of consistency during the Chiefs’ six-game winning streak. He completed 16 of 22 passes for two touchdowns and zero interceptions, and while he was sacked four times, he also escaped trouble plenty and made some big throws when he had to.

Rushing Defense


The Raiders gashed the Chiefs on the ground early, but the defense tightened up toward the end of the game when it mattered. Latavius Murray rushed 20 times for 86 yards, and the Raiders ran 24 times for 99 yards, an average of 4.1 yards per carry.

Passing defense


Oakland quarterback Derek Carr completed 31 of 48 passes for 283 yards and two touchdowns. But he was sacked four times, and his three interceptions were killers. Kudos to the Chiefs for stepping up when it counted.

Special teams


Dustin Colquitt was very good, averaging 50 yards per punt and dropping two inside the 20. Knile Davis also had a 33-yard kickoff return. But Frankie Hammond almost muffed a punt, and they blew two extra points.



The game plans were solid, as defensive coordinator Bob Sutton called up some nice blitzes in the second half. On offense, Chiefs coach Andy Reid and his staff have done a nice job carving out an identity of running the ball, protecting the football and taking downfield shots at smart times.


Player of the game: Safety Tyvon Branch finished with four tackles, a deflection and a game-winning pick-six in his return to Oakland, where he spent the first seven years of his career.

Reason to hope: The Chiefs won a tough game on the road in which they encountered a lot of adversity, and are now winners of six straight.

Reason to mope: The Chiefs are a banged-up team right now, especially along the offensive line.

Looking ahead: The Chiefs face the Chargers, 3-9, at home. Three of their next four games are at home.

Terez A. Paylor: 816-234-4489, @TerezPaylor