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Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Chiefs Defeat Buccaneers, 27-24, in Career Game for Tyreek Hill

Courtesy of the Kansas City Chiefs

The Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 27-24, in what turned out to be a career game for wide receiver Tyreek Hill as the Chiefs moved to 10-1 on the season.

Hill hauled in 13 catches for 269 yards and three touchdowns in the game, including perhaps the biggest grab of the night in the closing seconds of regulation.

Up three points and facing a third-and-seven with just one minute and 15 seconds remaining, Chiefs’ quarterback Patrick Mahomes found Hill to pick up the first down and ultimately secure the victory.

It punctuated an incredible offensive performance by both Mahomes and Hill with a ninth-straight victory away from Arrowhead Stadium, matching a franchise record.

Mahomes completed 37-of-49 passes for 462 yards and three touchdowns in the game, finding Hill for a 75-yard score on the first play of Kansas City’s third offensive series.

It marked Hill’s ninth career touchdown of at least 75 yards, and just one possession later, Hill was back in end zone when he hauled in a 44-yard grab to push the Chiefs’ advantage to 17 points.

In total, Hill racked up seven catches for 203 yards and two touchdowns in the first quarter alone. It marked the second-most prolific first quarter in terms of receiving yards by any player since 1991, trailing only Lee Evans’ 205 first-quarter receiving yards in 2006.

And while Hill was racing up and down the field, the Chiefs’ defense got off to an equally impressive start. Kansas City held the Buccaneers to three straight three-and-outs in the first quarter, preventing Tampa Bay from cutting into the Chiefs’ early lead.

The Chiefs looked poised to add to their advantage a possession later, driving into the Buccaneers’ red zone to begin the second quarter, but defensive end Shaquil Barrett ripped the ball free from Mahomes on a strip-sack and Tampa Bay recovered. Buccaneers’ quarterback Tom Brady then cashed in on the takeaway a bit later, finding tailback Ronald Jones for a 37-yard score to get Tampa Bay on the board.

Kansas City answered with a field goal prior to halftime – pushing the Chiefs’ advantage to 13 points heading into the break – and with 359 passing yards in the first half, Mahomes piled up the most passing yards in the first half of a game since Peyton Manning tallied 361 in the 2004 postseason.

Tampa Bay tallied a field goal on its opening drive of the second half, pulling within 10 points, but Hill was back in the end zone once again on the Chiefs’ next possession as Mahomes found Hill for a 20-yard score to extend Kansas City’s advantage.

It marked Hill’s third score of the day, and with seven minutes left in the third quarter, the speedy Hill was already just the fifth player since 1950 with 260+ receiving yards and three receiving touchdowns in a single game.

Chiefs’ cornerback Bashaud Breeland picked off Brady on Tampa Bay’s next series, stalling what began as a promising drive, and the defense was at it again a possession later, as safety Tyrann Mathieu intercepted Brady to end another possession.

The Buccaneers did manage to narrow the deficit with touchdown connections between Brady and wide receiver Mike Evans on each of their next two drives, but despite pulling within three points late, Mahomes found Hill on third down with under two minutes to play and Brady never saw the ball again.

The Chiefs return to Arrowhead Stadium next week to take on the Denver Broncos on Sunday Night Football.

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