Chiefs TE Travis Kelce tied an NFL record on Thursday night by racking up 100+ yards for the 4th straight game. Tony Gonzalez and Jimmy Graham are the only other TEs in NFL history to pull that off. The Raiders had no answer for Kelce, whose 5 receptions went for 15, 16, 28, 8 and 34 yards. He did a bunch of damage after the catch and also made a contorting grab down the seam. Kelce led the Chiefs with 8 targets -- 30.8% of QB Alex Smith's total attempts. No TE is hotter right now. Kelce should keep rolling next week against a middle Titans TE defense.
Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill was the most electric player on the field in Thursday night's game against the Raiders. He got the Chiefs on the board in the 2nd quarter with a 36-yard TD grab, running right by CB David Amerson on a post route. Later in that quarter, Hill took a punt return right through the teeth of Oakland's coverage for a 78-yard score. Kansas City got Hill the ball on a few quick-hitting passes, but he wasn't able to break any of those for big gains. He finished with 6 catches on 6 targets for 66 yards. It's worth noting that he played just 45.5% of the offensive snaps, his lowest share since Week 8. But Hill is getting the ball when he's on the field and will remain a key piece of this Chiefs offense the rest of the way. He gets a plus Week 15 matchup against the Titans' 29th-ranked WR defense.
Chiefs WR Jeremy Maclin caught just 1 pass for 16 yards in Thursday night's loss to the Raiders. He garnered 3 targets -- tied with Chris Conley for 3rd on the team behind Travis Kelce (8) and Tyreek Hill (6). Maclin didn't seem bothered by the groin injury that kept him out the previous 4 weeks and actually led Chiefs WRs with 42 snaps (out of 55). But with Kelce red hot and the continued emergence of Hill, Maclin simply isn't a featured part of this passing game. He does get Tennessee's 29th-ranked WR defense next week, though, putting him on the WR3 radar.
Chiefs RB Spencer Ware didn't find much running room against the Raiders on Thursday night. He finished with 56 yards on 20 carries (2.8 yards per carry), with none of those going for more than 8 yards. Ware added just 7 yards on 1 catch and 2 targets. Worst of all: He was vultured by Charcandrick West for a 3-yard TD. Ware out-snapped West 40 to 13 and out-touched him 21 to 2, so he remains the clear lead back here. But Ware simply hasn't been good in 5 games since returning from his concussion, averaging just 3.4 yards per carry. Consider him just a RB2 next week against a Titans defense that's better against the run than the pass.
Chiefs QB Alex Smith played a nearly flawless 1st half against the Raiders on Thursday night, completing 11 of 16 passes for 203 yards. The highlight was a perfectly thrown deep ball to WR Tyreek Hill for a 36-yard TD. It was a different story in the 2nd half. He was picked off on his 2nd pass after the break and was strip-sacked on his very next snap. Smith connected on just 6 of 10 attempts for 61 scoreless yards in the 2nd half, but Kansas City's defense did enough to hold on for the win. Smith has posted 220+ yards in 4 straight games. That's the good news. The bad news is that he's gone 6 straight games without tossing more than 1 TD. Even in a plus matchup against the Titans next week, he won't be more than a mid-range QB2.
Raiders WR Michael Crabtree tangled with Chiefs CB Marcus Peters for much of Thursday night's game. The end result was 4 catches on 7 targets for 21 yards. Oakland didn't even try to hit Crabtree downfield, with his longest catch going for just 12. Peters and the Chiefs have handled him twice now. (They limited him to a 2-10 line back in Week 6.) The good news is that Crabtree doesn't face Kansas City again this season. He gets a Chargers defense in Week 15 that he went for 47 yards and a score against earlier this season.
Raiders WR Amari Cooper botched a plus spot against the Chiefs on Thursday night. As expected, he didn't see much of CB Marcus Peters. But he still struggled to create separation and was also hurt by an uncharacteristically inaccurate Derek Carr. Cooper hauled in just 5 of 10 targets for 29 yards. He broke free for what could have been a 72-yard TD in the 4th quarter but either lost the ball in the lights or lost his footing and couldn't come down with it. Cooper has now been held under 60 yards in 5 straight games. There'll at least be some bounce-back appeal in Week 15 against a thin Chargers secondary. Cooper torched them for 138 yards and a score back in Week 5.
RB Latavius Murray was the only thing working for the Raiders' offense in Thursday night's loss to the Chiefs. He carried 22 times for 103 yards -- just 14 fewer than QB Derek Carr threw for on 41 attempts. Murray also scored Oakland's only TD, a 1-yard plunge in the closing seconds of the 1st half. He's now popped in 4 TDs over his last 3 games and 12 total on the season. Murray has also tallied 22+ touches in 3 straight games and 16+ in 7 straight. That volume will make him a borderline RB1 against the Chargers's 25th-ranked RB defense in Week 15.
Raiders QB Derek Carr completed just 17-of-41 passes for 117 yards, 0 TDs and 0 INTs in Thursday night's loss to the Chiefs. The 41.5% completion rate, 2.9 yards per attempt and 117 yards were all season lows. An Oakland offensive line missing stud G Kelechi Osemele had trouble protecting Carr. And he was uncharacteristically inaccurate when he did have time. That injured pinkie seemed to be a bigger issue in this one than it was last week. Carr has now tossed 0 or 1 TD in 6 of 13 games. He's on the road again next week vs. San Diego's 14th-ranked QB defense. Carr beat them for 317 yards with 2 TDs and 1 INT back in Week 5.
Chiefs ILB Derrick Johnson left in the 2nd quarter of Thursday night's game after suffering a left leg injury. Johnson went down without contact after trying to drive off the leg. He immediately pulled his helmet off and sat on the field, shaking his head. Trainers helped Johnson off the field, with his left shoe off and no weight being put on the injured leg. We'll see about the official diagnosis, but this one looks serious.
Update: Johnson is out for the game with a left Achilles' injury.