After beating the Tennesee Titans on Sunday, the Kansas City Chiefs are going to the Super Bowl for the first time in 50 years.
In the first game of a doubleheader, the Chiefs and the Titans faced off at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas to decide the AFC Championship. Tennesee came out to a hot start, going up 10-0 early in the first quarter. In an obscure bit of NFL history, Titans’ offensive lineman Dennis Kelly — who weighs 321 lbs. — became the heaviest player ever to catch a playoff touchdown after he gave Tennesee a 17-7 lead in the middle of the second quarter.
But it didn’t take long for the Chiefs, known for their high-flying offense, to take over.
In one of the most impressive highlights of the game, Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes dodged multiple defenders to score a touchdown in the final seconds of the first half that gave Kansas City a 21-17 lead they never relinquished.
Neither team scored in the third quarter, but Kansas City was able to extend their lead 28-17 just 10 seconds into the fourth. After another touchdown, the Chiefs extended their lead to 35-17.
The Titans cut their deficit to 11 points after scoring a touchdown with less than five minutes to go, but it wouldn’t be enough as the final score was 35-24.
Kansas City will now play the winner of the NFC Championship game — either the Green Bay Packers or the San Francisco 49ers — in Miami on Feb. 2 for Super Bowl LIV.
The Chiefs earned a trip to the AFC Championship after defeating the Houston Texans in an incredible comeback win on Jan. 12. Facing almost insurmountable odds, the Chiefs became the first team in NFL history to lead at halftime after being down by 24 or more points.
“I learned one thing since I got here. YOU GOTTA FIGHT, FOR YOUR RIGHT, TO PAAAAARTTAYYY” pic.twitter.com/rnEz8KSGBV— NFLonCBS (@NFLonCBS) January 19, 2020
Kansas City won the matchup 51-31 and became only the 14th team to ever score more than 50 points in a playoff game, according to CBS Sports.
Sunday was the second time in two years the Chiefs have reached the AFC Championship. Last season, they ended with a 37-31 loss to the eventual Super Bowl champions, the New England Patriots.
Kansas City posted a 12-4 record this season, with the Titans handing them one of those losses in November.
The Titans, meanwhile, reached the AFC Championship with an impressive win against the Baltimore Ravens last weekend. Before that, the Titans eliminated Tom Brady and the Patriots from championship contention with a 20-13 win in the wild card round of the playoffs.
The Ravens, who had a league-best 14-2 regular-season record, came into the matchup as favorites against Tennesee, who earned a 9-7 record.
The Titans were spurred on by quarterback Ryan Tannehill and running back Derrick Henry. Tannehill, 31, previously played seven seasons with the Miami Dolphins before he was traded to the Titans after the 2018 season. He earned the starting quarterback job after former starter Marcus Mariota was benched.
Aside from Tannehill’s play, Henry has set records as an important part of the offense. According to ESPN, Henry became the first player in NFL history to rush for 180 or more yards in three consecutive games.
A matchup against the San Francisco 49ers and Green Bay Packers on Sunday night will decide the NFC champions.