In their first game after releasing leading rusher Kareem Hunt, the Chiefs let Patrick Mahomes run more than he had all season.
But Chiefs coach Andy Reid said that was a function of the Raiders defense, rather than a desire to cut Mahomes loose to make plays with his legs.
The MVP candidate ran nine times for 52 yards Sunday, as they chopped up the carries with Spencer Ware and Damien Williams and Tyreek Hill. Mahomes hadn’t carried more than six times in a game this year, and while some were scrambles, Reid said there were a few designed runs in there.
“Some of those were off the (run-pass option) stuff and the reads,” Reid said, via Lynn Worthy of the Kansas City Star. “Then he had a couple just by the way they were playing. They were pushing towards the RPO stuff and they created seams there, so we were able to attack those when we had a true pass on. . . .
“They were good adjustments, and he’s not taking big hits on those. He’s getting down, and we’re getting out of bounds — which is important. I’m not too worried about that. There are going to be games when you’ve got to do that. That’s what’s available, and you’ve got to take advantage of that. I’ve got confidence in the other guys, the other two running backs, that they can play. I don’t have a problem there.”
Combined, the Chiefs ran 30 times for 174 yards against the Raiders, who are next to last in the league in rush defense. As the competition improves, it will be interesting to see if Reid’s still as open to letting his most important offensive player take off running.