Kelce scores 3 touchdowns, the Chiefs win 30-27 over the Chargers

INGLEWOOD, Calif. – Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce ended up giving a performance that made The Fonz proud.

Mahomes connected with Kelce for three touchdowns — including the go-ahead score with 31 seconds remaining — as the Kansas City Chiefs edged the Los Angeles Chargers 30-27 Sunday night to stay top of the AFC.

Mahomes met Emmy Award-winning actor Henry Winkler before the game. Winkler, who played Fonzie on the legendary TV show Happy Days for 12 seasons, received a signed jersey on the sidelines. Kelce got into action by wearing a t-shirt before the game that featured a picture of The Fonz and read: “Football. Family. Fonzie”.

When Mahomes and the Chiefs got the ball at the KC 25 with 1:46 left, he had his usual cool and calm presence.

“When I went around it was like, ‘Let’s just do it. Everyone had an attitude of playing one game at a time and getting it when it counts,” said Mahomes, who completed 20 of 34 passes for 329 yards.

After the Chargers went 27-23 on Justin Herbert’s 6-yard touchdown pass to Joshua Palmer by 1:46, Mahomes orchestrated a six-play, 75-yard drive that lasted just 1:15.

It was the 11th time in the regular season that Mahomes had a game-winning drive in the fourth quarter.

Despite missing two receivers through injuries, he completed 3 of 4 for 48 yards on the drive and climbed twice for another 22 yards.

The Chiefs also benefited from a third-down holding call on Chargers’ safety Derwin James after an incomplete pass.

After a 16-yard run by Mahomes and a timeout in Kansas City, Mahomes hit Kelce on a short crossing route that took Kelce into the end zone for a 17-yard touchdown.

“We didn’t have our full arsenal of weapons. I was ready for the matchup,” said Kelce, who had six catches for 115 yards. “I knew they were going to be man-to-man and Patrick would be looking for me if it was 1-on-1. I was able to end the game on a positive note.”

Herbert and the Chargers had one last chance, but Nick Bolton intercepted a deflected pass to seal it (8-2) for the Chiefs, who beat Los Angeles’ season series (5-5) and took a three-game lead AFC West.

It’s the third straight year that the Chargers had a late lead at home against the Chiefs and failed to finish.

“You should be frustrated. Not beating these guys is disappointing because we felt our level was good enough to win, but we didn’t finish games in the fourth quarter to make it happen,” Staley said after Los Angeles made his lost second episode and dropped to 5-. 5.

With a one-game lead over four teams in the conference, Kansas City is poised to secure home field advantage in the playoffs.

Kelce scored at least three touchdowns for the second time in his career. He scored four goals in a Monday night win against the Raiders on October 10.

Chiefs rookie Isiah Pacheco rushed for a career-high 107 yards.

“Patrick and Travis calm everything on both sides of the ball. The good players really stepped up when we needed it,” said coach Andy Reid. “I’m proud of our boys, who have strengthened themselves offensively and defensively. This is great football at the right time.

Herbert went 23 of 30 for 280 yards and two touchdowns, both for Palmer, who had eight receptions for 106 yards. It was by far the Chargers’ best offensive performance in nearly a month as the unit was bolstered by the return of receivers Keenan Allen and Mike Williams.

Allen, who was only playing his third game due to a nagging hamstring injury, had five receptions for 94 yards, including a 46-yard comeback down the right touchline on the go-ahead drive to put the ball on the Chief’s 16-yard line bring to.

“Mike (Williams) is as tough as it gets, and so is Keenan (Allen). They’re special contenders, so every time you put these guys on the field something good will happen. But unfortunately it didn’t go our way today,” said Herbert.

Austin Ekeler had 100 yards (83 rushing, 17 receiving) and a touchdown.

KELCE’S RECORD NIGHT: It was Kelce’s 34th game with at least 100 yards reception and surpassed Rob Gronkowski by the most by tight end in NFL history. Eight of his 11 TDs this season have come in prime-time games.

Kelce gave Kansas City a 13-10 lead early in the second quarter with a 4-yard screen pass that mimicked the high jump dance of Pro Football Hall of Fame cornerback Deion Sanders on his way to the end zone .

Kelce’s 32-yard touchdown in the opening game of the fourth quarter put the Chiefs 23-20 ahead.

Kelce caught the ball on the LA 26 after Asante attempted a dive at Samuel Jr., breaking a tackle from Nasir Adderley at the 16 and going up the right touchline for the hit.

QUICK START: After Harrison Butker’s 33-yard field goal on first possession gave the Chiefs a 3-0 lead, the Charges promptly responded with their first drive in three games. Palmer beat Juan Thornhill in a single cover and Herbert found him for a 50 yard touchdown.

It was the first time in 20 regular-season games that Kansas City conceded a touchdown on an opening drive.