HOUSTON (AP) — Rookie Kareem Hunt continues to pile up yards and help the Kansas City Chiefs keep winning.
Hunt had 29 carries for 107 yards on Sunday night as the Chiefs (5-0) remained undefeated with a 42-34 win over the Houston Texans.
“It’s a great feeling,” he said. “I love winning and the biggest thing is to get a win.”
It was the fourth 100-yard rushing game for Hunt, who was drafted in the third round out of Toledo. He needs one more to tie Joe Delaney’s franchise rookie record of five set in 1981.
He ran for 32 yards in the fourth quarter as the Chiefs tried to eat up the clock and keep the ball away from rookie Deshaun Watson.
“Hunt just continues to stay strong in the fourth quarter with his endurance. He’s got ball-carrying endurance,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. “I don’t know, for a big guy, he can skedaddle and we really needed him there.”
Hunt leads the NFL with 609 yards rushing. He’s the first Chiefs rookie to have 600 yards rushing since Christian Okoye finished with 660 in 1987.
He leads the league with seven carries of 20 or more yards this season, his three carries of 40 yards or longer are also most in the NFL and he’s tied for third with four rushing touchdowns.
Hunt was happy that he could keep the offense moving at times when things weren’t going as well in the passing game on Sunday night.
“That’s why they call football a team sport,” he said. “Those guys have my back. When we’re down in (the) pass game, I know I got their back.”
Some things to know about the Chiefs’ win over the Texans.
WHAT A PLAY
Watson continued to impress in his fourth NFL start, throwing for 261 yards and five touchdowns to become the first rookie quarterback with five or more touchdowns in consecutive games in NFL history.
He made several big plays on Sunday night, but the most jaw-dropping one came when Rakeem Nunez-Roches tried to strip the ball out of his hands as he scrambled away from the pass rush. Watson smoothly moved the ball from his right to left hand to keep it away from Nunez-Roches before switching it back to his right hand and launching it 48 yards for a touchdown to Will Fuller early in the fourth quarter.
“Sky’s the limit for him,” Reid said. “Heck of a player. Elusive. Big arm. Sees things. Loves to play. He’s got all that stuff … Houston is lucky to have him.”
Both teams had several players injured on Sunday night led by Houston’s J.J. Watt breaking his leg in the first quarter. The team announced that he sustained a tibial plateau fracture. The three-time Defensive Player of the Year returned this season after missing the last 13 games of last season after his second back surgery. Houston also played most of the game without linebacker Whitney Mercilus after he suffered a chest injury in the first quarter, which coach Bill O’Brien said he is concerned about.
Chiefs’ safety Steven Terrell suffered a concussion on the opening kickoff and tight end Travis Kelce is in the concussion protocol after experiencing memory loss at halftime. Reid said that he thinks receiver Chris Conley has a ruptured Achilles tendon.
The Chiefs have lost just one fumble this season and Smith has yet to throw an interception.
“Turnovers are tough. They get you in the long run,” Reid said. “Alex has always been good with that … and our ball carries are hanging onto the ball, receivers are hanging onto it. It’s important.
DeANDRE’S BIG DAY
Houston receiver DeAndre Hopkins had a career-high three touchdown receptions on Sunday to tie a single-game franchise record. He’s the first Texan to have three touchdown receptions since Andre Johnson did it in 2013 against the Colts.
He had a 6-yard score in the second quarter and added 34- and 1-yard touchdowns in the fourth quarter.
He’s excited about the possibilities for the offense as Watson continues to develop.
“I’m impressed with the things that he can do with his feet and with his arm as well,” Hopkins said. “Everybody knows he can run, but still he looks downfield to make plays. The throws that he made toward the end of the game were some special throws.”
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