Chiefs kicker Cairo Santos converted three field goals in the fourth quarter, but Houston recovered an onside kick with less than a minute left for a 19-12 final to hand the Chiefs their first loss of the season. A slow start and mistakes cost the Chiefs and there was no big second half comeback this time.
“All in all, we made way too many mistakes today,” said Chiefs coach Andy Reid. “Too many penalties. Dropped balls. You name it. Turnovers, we had three turnovers. All these things led to points. That’s my responsibility.”
The first miscue came after Mitch Morse launched a snap over Alex Smith’s head. J.J. Watt, who finished with 1.5 sacks, pushed Smith out of the way and pounced on the loose ball. Later, Houston was leading by a touchdown in the second quarter when Spencer Ware fumbled. Houston’s Kevin Johnson scooped it up and returned it 52 yards. The Texans couldn’t get their offense going after that and settled for a 24-yard field goal to make it 13-3. Smith was later stripped of the ball for his second fumble of the game near the end of the first half.
Sloppy play and slow starts has plagued the Chiefs early in the first two games. Smith led the NFL with 601 touches last year without a fumble and had two. Ware never lost a fumble his entire college career or at any point last season for the Chiefs, fumbled for the first time.
Rookie Tyreek Hill had a 105-yard kickoff return for a touchdown called back because of a holding penalty late in the fourth quarter.
Kansas City hosts the Jets next Sunday.