What's up, fellow APers? Please answer the poll after reading.
I'm going to focus on the offense today because RAC's Halftime Show apparently was the difference for the D.
We'll take our weekly look at key plays after the jump...
Before we get started, here's my weekly "Courtesy of ESPN's play by play" message. (I don't work for or prefer ESPN over anywhere else normally...I just like their play by play set up).
|3rd and 2 at IND 43||(Shotgun) D.McCluster left end to IND 44 for -1 yards (T.Johnson).|
***I hate when OC's try to get cute calling plays. We obviously have an OC who isn't very good, so we need to keep it simple. A fast defense means they're probably smaller, and a smaller defense means they're probably a little weaker inside the box. When facing a smaller defense, you pound the rock up the gut when it's 3rd and 2 (if you choose to run). It's early in the game. You're in enemy territory and driving towards points...you have to play the odds in that situation. Feel free to disagree with me, but that's my opinion.
|1st and 10 at IND 41||(Run formation) M.Cassel pass short right to D.Bowe for 41 yards, TOUCHDOWN.|
***We burned them all day on this short slant route. For whatever reason, they couldn't stop it. We all know that Bowe was a world-beater yesterday, and I don't even want to get started talking about his amazing juggling TD later in the game (not enough space to describe how awesome it was to watch...plus it's already been analyzed by people way smarter than me), but Bowe is really starting to demand that money for his upcoming contract. Bottom line: if we lose him, Pioli has to go ASAP.
|1st and 10 at IND 36||(Run formation) J.Battle up the middle to IND 21 for 15 yards (J.Lefeged; A.Bethea).|
***Let me first say that I am not on the "Jackie Battle Bandwagon" yet. One good game does not equal a good running back.
However, Battle played wonderfully yesterday. In my opinion, this play was a major turning point in the game. Let's play the "What If" game for a minute. Let's just say this is a 5 yard run instead of a 15 yard run...KC still has to burn timeout #2, but we're at the IND 31 instead of the IND 21 now, with only one timeout remaining and it's now 2nd and 5 and probably about 0:50 on the game clock. That changes things a little, doesn't it? Does that mean we wouldn't have scored a TD? Who knows what would've happened in that case, but we can see what DID happen immediately after Battle's 15 yard run:
|1st and 10 at IND 21||(Shotgun) M.Cassel scrambles up the middle to IND 16 for 5 yards (E.Sims; J.Lefeged).|
|2nd and 5 at IND 16||(No Huddle, Shotgun) M.Cassel pass short left to S.Breaston for 16 yards, TOUCHDOWN [D.Freeney].|
Two plays later, we were celebrating a touchdown. I can't say enough how important that 15 yard run was to the entire game. That drive changed the game for our offense (obviously, when we look at what happened in the second half)...
|2nd and 6 at IND 39||(Run formation) T.Jones right end to IND 28 for 11 yards (A.Bethea). PENALTY on KC-L.Pope, Offensive Holding, 10 yards, enforced at IND 39 - No Play.|
***Here we are again in enemy territory, marching towards putting points on the board (at this point in the game VERY critical to our comeback), and we get a 10 yard penalty. Of course, we have to punt a few plays later. These are the kinds of things that will kill you. You can't make mistakes that cost you points. This drive (the first of the second half) could've killed our comeback hopes. We had just scored a TD before the end of the half, and we were driving again to make the game even closer...then we screw up and get a penalty. Luckily, it didn't end up biting us in the rear, but for us to continue to improve, we can't take those types of penalties.
|1st and 5 at IND 5||(Run formation) M.Cassel pass short right to D.Bowe for 5 yards, TOUCHDOWN. Penalty on IND-J.Lacey, Defensive Pass Interference, declined.|
***So, I lied. That play was awesome! Nuff said...
IN CRUNCH TIME:
|2nd and 10 at IND 19||M.Cassel scrambles right end to IND 11 for 8 yards (R.Mathis; P.Angerer). IND-J.Powers was injured during the play. He is Out.|
|3rd and 2 at IND 11||(Run formation) M.Cassel pass short left to S.Breaston for 11 yards, TOUCHDOWN.|
***Matt Cassel, who the heck are you as a QB? One minute, you ground a screen pass because you're afraid of throwing an INT...the next, you're marching our beloved Chiefs down the field for a game winning touchdown to cap off a franchise record-tying comeback. Quit playing games with us, dude. Matt Cassel is like herpes: Just when you think he's going to go away and leave you alone (in our case...we all were thinking he'd be benched if he kept his BUF and DET pace up for the rest of the year), he comes back with a flaming fury. I'm officially on the bandwagon for giving Cassel the ball and seeing what he can do with it now. It's time for us to figure out what we have at QB. No more hiding him behind the run game. Let's see what Matty Nice has in the tank. Especially with Baldwin coming into the fold soon, it's time to see where we are with KC QB#7.
|4th and 11 at KC 46||P.McAfee punts 46 yards to end zone, Center-J.Snow, Touchback. PENALTY on KC-J.Brown, Defensive Offside, 5 yards, enforced at KC 46 - No Play.|
***Okay, I live in Indiana. I've had to watch the Colts beat us time and time again...and here we are with a chance to ice the game...and we are OFFSIDE ON A FREAKING PUNT!!! ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?! If we would've lost the game, I think there'd be many Chiefs fans ready to crucify Mr. Brown. Luckily, it didn't, so it ended up being a footnote. As I said earlier, WE HAVE TO STOP TAKING DUMB PENALTIES!!!! As much talent as we've lost to injury, we can't afford to do it.
|4th and 6 at KC 41||(Shotgun) C.Painter pass incomplete short left to A.Gonzalez (J.McGraw).|
***I'm a Chiefs fan through and through, but that, my friends, was a penalty on Mr. McGraw. We got lucky on that one. So when we recap, that's TWO PLAYS IN A ROW that could've cost us the game. We have to be more disciplined than that. I won't beat a dead horse here, but our guys have to learn to stop taking stupid penalties. If the zebras would've called this, we very well could be 1-4 today.
ONE MORE FOR THE ROAD:
|2nd and 9 at KC 42||J.Battle up the middle to IND 34 for 24 yards (T.Johnson).|
***Let's do the math. That's two plays in crunch time (TD drive to end first half and now this) from Mr. Battle for 39 yards. This was the final straw...when I took a deep breath, looked at my wife, and said, "It's over!"
Well, Arrowheads, let's hope this keeps coming. I like to win! :) Obviously, we have a ton to learn from this game, and if we want to beat Oakland in two weeks...we have to figure out a way to play well for 4 quarters, not just 2 1/2.