KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Travis Kelce was chatting with Patrick Mahomes in practice this week when he mentioned, almost as an afterthought, that he thought Taylor Swift would take him up on his invitation to watch the Kansas City Chiefs play the Chicago Bears on Sunday.
“Some things with Travis,” Mahomes explained later, “he says it and you don’ t know if it’s true or not, he says it so calmly.”
Turns out it was true.
Mahomes and Kelce put on quite their own show for the pop star, too.
The reigning league MVP threw for 272 yards and three touchdowns, his All-Pro tight end caught seven passes and one of the scoring throws, and the Chiefs romped to a 41-10 victory over the Bears — much to the delight of their newest fan, who joyfully pounded on the glass of her Arrowhead Stadium suite throughout the afternoon.
“I haven’t gotten to meet her,” said Mahomes, who was left answering questions about Kelce and Swift’s budding relationship after his good buddy ducked out on reporters. “I guess if she ends up being with Travis, I’ll meet her at some point.”
Jerick McKinnon had a pair of touchdown catches and Isiah Pacheco and Clyde Edwards-Helaire added touchdown runs, helping the Super Bowl champion Chiefs (2-1) deal the Bears (0-3) their 13th consecutive loss dating to last season.
The game was so lopsided by the third quarter that Mahomes and most of the Chiefs’ starters got the rest of the day off.
“We got things rolling and that’s a plus against a defense that, you know, is banged up a little bit,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said.
Embattled Bears quarterback Justin Fields was 11 of 22 for 99 yards with an interception and a meaningless touchdown in the final minutes. He also led the Bears with 47 yards rushing, a good chunk of that coming on a 17-yard scramble, as the league’s 27th-ranked offense finished with just 203 yards against one of the NFL’s fast-improving defenses.
“We’ve got to keep this thing tight in our locker room. That’s the most important thing,” Bears coach Matt Eberflus said. “There’s going to be a lot of outside noise, as there always is in the NFL. And we’ve played three games so far in the season. We’ve got a great opportunity ahead of us. We’ve got two games in 11 days, and so we’re going to focus on that.”
Still, their poor performance Sunday was a brutal end to a dismal week of distractions.
In the span of a few hours Wednesday, Bears defensive coordinator Alan Williams abruptly resigned, citing the need “to take care of my health and family,” and Fields had to walk back some comments he made blaming his “robotic” play through the first two weeks on the way he had been coached.
Eberflus was left to call defensive plays, just as he did in last weekend’s loss to Tampa Bay, and Reid proceeded to make the former Indianapolis Colts coordinator look utterly lost.
The Chiefs began their assault with the first of Mahomes’ two TD passes to McKinnon, then Edwards-Helaire scored from a yard out to make it 14-0 early in the second quarter. When the Bears punted a third consecutive time, Mahomes hit McKinnon again to extend the lead, and Kansas City proceeded to score on its next four possessions.
As for Fields, well, the QB was not just robotic but inaccurate. When one of the league’s most porous offensive lines wasn’t allowing the Chiefs to pressure him, Fields was consistently missing open targets down field.
“I need to be better,” Fields said simply.
He was picked off by Mike Edwards late in the first half, leading to Pacheco’s touchdown run. And when Harrison Butker added the second of his two field goals, the Chiefs were able to take a 34-0 lead into the break.
Kelce added his short touchdown catch early in the second half, celebrating in the back of the end zone by revving the engine on an imaginary motorcycle. High above the stadium, Swift clapped her hands alongside his mother, Donna Kelce.
“On Friday he was like, ‘Yeah, I think she’s coming to the game this weekend,’ and went about his business,” Mahomes recalled after the game, “and you’re like, I guess that just happens. That’s Travis.”
STATS AND STREAKS
The Bears have not won in Kansas City since Week 5 of the 2015 season. … Reid won his 271st game, moving him past Hall of Fame coach Tom Landry into fourth place on the career list. … Mahomes went over 25,000 yards passing for his career. He did it in 83 games, the fastest in NFL history. … Mahomes had his 22nd game with three TD passes and no interceptions, tying Aaron Rodgers for the most by a QB before turning 30. Mahomes turned 28 last Sunday. … Kelce needs three more TD catches to pass Tony Gonzalez (76) for second in Chiefs history.
Bears: Starting safety Eddie Jackson was inactive with a foot injury and cornerback Josh Blackwell was dealing with a hamstring injury, all before cornerback Tyrique Stevenson had to be evaluated for a concussion; he later was deemed to have an illness and did not return. Defensive backs Jaquan Brisker and Jaylon Johnson also were hobbled during the game.
Bears: Host the Denver Broncos next Sunday.
Chiefs: Visit the New York Jets next Sunday night.
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