The Kansas City Chiefs dominated the first quarter and took a 14-9 halftime lead over the New Orleans Saints on Sunday, Dec. 20 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
The game marked the return of quarterback Drew Brees. The 20-year veteran had missed the previous four games with broken ribs and a punctured lung. Brees and the Saints offense, missing star receiver Michael Thomas, was rusty with four three-and-outs and an interception to start the game. Brees was 0 for 6 in those possessions, the first time in his career he had gotten off to such a poor start. He completed his first pass to Alvin Kamara with 12:19 left in the second quarter, converting the team's first third down.
The Saints (10-3) had just 16 yards of offense in the first quarter and the Chiefs (12-1) had possession for 12 minutes and four seconds.
The Saints offense got on track when Brees hit wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders with a 51-yard pass to the 3-yard line. Backup quarterback Taysom Hill scored two plays later on a 1-yard run. Brees finished the half 5 of 16 for 87 yards with one interception. Kamara ran seven times for 37 yards. New Orleans added two points with three seconds left in the half when Kansas City fumbled a punt return out the back of the end zone for a safety.
Kansas City scored on a 5-yard touchdown pass from Patrick Mahomes to Tyreek Hill and a 1-yard Mahomes pass to tight end Travis Kelce. The Saints defense sacked Mahomes three times, one by defensive end Trey Hendrickson, giving him 11.5 for the season. Carl Granderson and Malcolm Roach had the other sacks.
The Saints get the ball to start the second half.