The Chiefs stayed with the heavily favored Colts all game long, dictating the action at times, and overcoming a couple of miscues that could have sent them into a tailspin. It was encouraging for fans, but unfortunately, the Chiefs couldn't do enough to come up with a win. Ultimately, the Colts were able to overcome a few miscues of their own and make just enough plays to pull it out at the end.
Chiefs Quarterback Line: 19/27, 162 Yards, 1 Touchdown, 0 Interceptions
It was Brodie Croyle's first NFL start and the Chiefs did everything they could to protect him. Maybe too much. The Chiefs went even more conservative than usual, limiting Croyle to short passing, mostly underneath 15 yards. It may have been KC's undoing - they needed to challenge the reeling Colts, but other than a pinpoint touchdown strike to wide receiver Dwayne Bowe, couldn't land any real punches. Croyle was cool under fire, however, so there's plenty there for Chiefs fans to be encouraged about.
The Chiefs could have opened things up more, but they've got Croyle's long-term psyche to worry about, I guess.
Chiefs Running Back Line: 27 Carries, 72 Yards, 2.7 Yards Per Carry, 0 Touchdowns
There were two major issues at work here. First, the Chiefs ran an awful lot on first down, something that the Colts, not being dummies, figured out. Second, the strength of Priest Holmes, his vision on perimeter runs, plays to strength of the Colts' defense, their speed. The Chiefs tried to establish Holmes on the perimeter, but on several occasions, the Colts were able to negate the runs with their speed on the outside. The Chiefs responded with a metric ton of draw plays, but most of the time, the Colts sniffed those out.
Holmes gets more comfortable every week, and the offensive line is still improving. It's just not enough yet.
Colts Quarterback Line: 16/32, 150 Yards, 0 Touchdowns, 1 Interception
Any time a team holds Peyton Manning to only 150 yards passing at home, high marks are deserved. The media will be talking about how the Colts struggled because they were undermanned, but the Chiefs did a good job of disrupting Indy's passing game all day long. Jared Allen couldn't get to Manning, but did bat down several passes, disrupting Manning's rhythm. Tamba Hali and Ron Edwards sacked Manning once each, and Jarrad Page picked him off.
The Chiefs did a fantastic job of affecting the usually unflappable Manning.
Colts Running Back Line: 27 Carries, 66 Yards, 2.4 Yards Per Carry, 1 Touchdown
Colts running back Joseph Addai has two of the best feet in the NFL, and they're probably what saved this game for the Colts. Addai's second-half touchdown was Indy's only trip to the end zone. The Chiefs sent waves of defenders after Addai but he managed to make the right plays at the right time.
Any doubts about Addai's ability should be put to rest. He didn't have a great game statistically, but he made plays when the Colts needed him.
It was a crazy day. Kickers Dave Rayner and Adam Vinatieri missed kicks, but both teams rebounded from those misses. The Chiefs looked more settled in the kick return game with Jeff Webb running back kickoffs, but punt returns were an adventure for Eddie Kennison. Props to Kansas City for stopping the Colts after Kennison's fumble.
Here's hoping Webb continues to return kicks for the Chiefs. He looks more comfortable back there than "specialist" Eddie Drummond.
Drum Beats: Indianapolis Grades
WarpaintIllustrated.com Top Stories
Three Backfields With Question MarksEvery week, Fantasy Football Expert Mark Morales-Smith examines the most turbulent backfields in the NFL to help decipher whether or not there are any Fantasy stars in the making..…
Chiefs Put Justin Houston on PUP ListWith roster cuts looming, the Kansas City Chiefs have placed All Pro linebacker Justin Houston on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list, meaning he won’t be able to return to…
Schwartz Brothers in Kansas City Makes SenseOn Tuesday afternoon, the Kansas City Chiefs will complete their first roster purge of the week. In order to get down to the league limit of 75 players, the Chiefs who cut eight…
Berry Signs as Chiefs Begin Roster CutsOn Sunday All Pro Safety Eric Berry, signed his one-year tender. That means today the Kansas City Chiefs coaching staff will get their first on field glimpse of their starting…