Quarterback Alex Smith threw for three touchdowns, including a 10 yard shovel pass to De’Anthony Thomas early in the fourth quarter, as the Kansas City Chiefs won in Houston on Sunday night, 42-34, on a night that saw Texans star defensive tackle J.J. Watt lost for the season with a tibial plateau fracture in his left leg.
The Chiefs had to withstand a second-half barrage led by rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson, who threw for five touchdown passes, just one week after leading Houston to a franchise-record 57 points in a win over the Tennessee Titans.
Watson, with 12 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, hit Will Fuller for a 48 yard touchdown pass, the second scoring connection between the duo in the half. Smith led a six-play, 70 yard drive that took just 3:03 to complete in answering the score, in a drive finished by the shovel pass to Thomas. Smith finished 29 of 37 for 324 with zero interceptions.
Second-year dynamo Tyreek Hill returned a punt 82 yards for a touchdown with 7:22 remaining in regulation. Watson, the rookie quarterback from Clemson, was 16 of 31 for 261 yards, with five touchdowns (four in the second half). Receiver DeAndre Hopkins caught three of the scoring passes.
The Chiefs amassed 450 yards and 29 first downs. Rookie running back Kareem Hunt, the focal point of the Texans’ defense in the first half, still managed 107 rushing yards on 29 attempts.
In addition to losing Watt for the season, Texans LB Whitney Mercilus was lost to injury on the first defensive series, and the Houston Chronicle reported he will undergo season-ending surgery to repair a torn pectoral muscle. Mercilus recorded 7.5 sacks last season.
Other NFL scores from Sunday, October 8, 2017 were:
Cincinnati 20, Buffalo 16
NY Jets 17, Cleveland 14
Carolina 27, Detroit 24
Indianapolis 26, San Francisco 23 (OT)
Miami 16, Tennessee 10
LA Chargers 27, NY Giants 22
Philadelphia 34, Arizona 7
Jacksonville 30, Pittsburgh 9
Seattle 16, LA Rams 10
Baltimore 30, Oakland 17
Green Bay 35, Dallas 31