Patrick Mahomes on Monday did not mind taking a back seat to rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire and the Kansas City Chiefs’ running attack.
With the Buffalo Bills working hard to limit deep throws by Mahomes, he gladly kept handing off the ball as Kansas City beat Buffalo 26-17 in a game originally scheduled for Thursday last week.
“You know my nature, I want to throw it deep every time. We want to go down and throw these long touchdowns, but if teams are going to play us like this, we’ve got to show we can run the football,” Mahomes said.
Led by Edwards-Helaire’s 161 yards rushing, the Chiefs finished with 245 yards — the most since Mahomes took over as starter in 2017.
Kansas City’s 46 rushing attempts were also the most in eight years under coach Andy Reid, and that was with newly signed Le’Veon Bell waiting to make his debut after signing with the Chiefs last week.
Photo: Mark Konezny-USA Today
“I can’t wait,” Bell wrote on Twitter during the game.
Edwards-Helaire has already chatted with the veteran Bell and is excited to team up.
“Another guy coming in, another piece to the puzzle. For me, we can only go up,” Edwards-Helaire said.
“Anything I can do to pick his brain and gain knowledge from, I’m there for it,” he said.
Mahomes finished 21 of 26 for 225 yards with two touchdowns, both to tight end Travis Kelce.
His first touchdown was the 90th of his career in his 37th game, breaking the NFL record for fewest games to 90 touchdown passes. Hall of Famer Dan Marino held the previous mark at 40 games.
The Chiefs are off to their third 5-1 start in four seasons as they bounced back from a sloppy 40-32 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders.
Buffalo’s defense sold out to prevent Mahomes from going deep, but proved vulnerable against the run.
“We felt we did well limiting them from taking it off the top, but the run game’s just another part of their game, and they executed it well,” Bills safety Micah Hyde said.
The Bills were undone by allowing the Chiefs to convert nine of 14 third-down chances, two of them on a 12-play, 75-yard drive that ended with Harrison Butker’s 30-yard field goal with 1 minute, 56 seconds remaining.
During that drive, Buffalo defensive tackle Justin Zimmer stripped the ball from Edwards-Helaire at the Kansas City 30. The play was ruled a fumble on the field, but that call was overturned after replays showed that Edwards-Helaire’s knee was down.
Two plays later, on third-and-11, Mahomes scrambled out of trouble and hit Byron Pringle for 37 yards. Mahomes then ate up more clock with a nine-yard scamper on third-and-seven.
“Frustrating, just because we feel like as a defense we’ve got to find a way to get our offense back on the field,” Hyde said. “We had to get a stop and we didn’t.”
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