The Chiefs fumbled four times, threw an interception and benched the guy they made the highest-paid right tackle in football just two games into his contract.
And won a game.
The last item is the most important, certainly — the Chiefs beat the Jaguars 17-9 to improve to 1-1 — but the initial three aren’t just rendered meaningless.
It’s been ugly offensively through a couple of weeks — the Chiefs went more than 60 minutes between touchdowns at one point.
So what should we make of it all?
Here are five observations from immediately after the game:
1. The Chiefs won a game with their defense
It’s been a minute since I led this recap with anything about the defense, but here we are.
I’m sure this is the fake trophy they’ve been waiting for.
The defense was lights out, and hopefully the disjointed offense doesn’t completely overshadow that. The Chiefs held the Jaguars to 4.2 yards per play.
They pressured Lawrence. They completely erased Jacksonville’s running game, holding Travis Etienne to 3.3 yards per carry.
And while Patrick Mahomes found Skyy Moore for 54 yards to seal the game, make no mistake — the defense sealed it time and time again.
Which might’ve had something to do with this guy:
2. To heck with St. Joseph, apparently
It might take Chris Jones a bit to get in peak football shape and earn his usual allotment of snaps after his return from a holdout.
It will not take him awhile to get back in the flow of the defense, apparently.
Jones was the most disruptive player on a defense that disrupted just about everything the Jaguars wanted to do — from the first drive until the game-sealing stop.
He had a sack. He created pressure. He knocked down the quarterback. He fought through double teams.
Basically, he was Chris Jones.
The Chiefs used him in a variety of ways. On his initial four snaps, he lined up in three different spots — each side within the interior and at defensive end.
3. The agony of the Chiefs offense. With an exception.
Patrick Mahomes finished with another 300-yard passing game, and Isiah Pacheco averaged nearly six yards per carry.
The individual numbers, in other words, can be deceiving.
The offense has played without rhythm in back-to-back games, and part of the problem is perhaps best illustrated in contrast to one of the solutions.
If you are wondering what Mahomes is still working through with his wide receivers, watch his touchdown pass to his tight end.
The ending might’ve made the play call look smooth — but Travis Kelce initially sat down for a quick hook, covered by a zone defense. So he slipped about six yards to find the space in the end zone.
And you know what? Mahomes never took his eyes off him.
He saw it the whole way. And he knew Kelce saw it the whole way too.
It’s indicative of the connection he’s established with Kelce — and indicative of the kind of thing that’s been absent from the chemistry with his wide receivers.
4. The forgettable day for Jawaan Taylor
Well, he’s the guy who stood out most to referee Adrian Hill, anyway.
A week after he became a focal point for not committing any penalties, Taylor was called for five of them.
And then he was called to the bench.
Taylor, whom the Chiefs made the highest-paid right tackle in history, made it through six quarters of football before the team waved for him to take a couple of snaps off and regroup.
The best linemen are those whose name you hear infrequently, and Taylor has been the subject of constant headlines for 10 days.
On Sunday, he was whistled for lining up too far off the line of scrimmage, for two false starts and for two holds.
5. The fourth-down reversal
A week ago, I spent an entire column critiquing the fourth-down decisions.
It’s only fair to flip to the other side of the sheet this week.
Head coach Andy Reid kept the offense on the field twice, and both times it led to points. In the first half, despite the fact the offense had produced literally zero points, he dialed up a pass to Clyde Edwards-Helaire for 10 yards on fourth-and-2. Three plays later, Mahomes found Skyy Moore for the Chiefs’ first touchdown of the game.
The Chiefs converted in the fourth quarter, as well, setting up a shorter field goal.
Even when the offense isn’t at its best, it turns out to be a good thing to keep Mahomes on the field. Imagine that, right?