In Sunday’s 20-17 loss to the Indianapolis Colts, the Kansas City Chiefs’ afternoon started out very badly. After the Kansas City defense forced a three-and-out to open the game, rookie wide receiver Skyy Moore muffed a punt inside the Chiefs’ 10-yard line — which Indianapolis recovered at the 4-yard line. Three plays later, the Colts took a 7-0 lead.
Thus began an unexpected defensive battle. Between them, the two defenses forced five three-and-outs. Still, the Chiefs managed to take a 14-10 lead into halftime after capitalizing on a L’Jarius Sneed strip-sack on fourth-and-1 that gave Kansas City the ball on the Colts’ 35-yard line — and then another strip-sack near the end of the second quarter that gave the Chiefs an even shorter field.
The teams exchanged field goals in the third quarter — but in the fourth, he Chiefs missed a chance for three with a fake field goal that failed to convert — and then backup placekicker Matt Ammendola missed a 34-yard try that would have given Kansas City a two-possession lead.
Then — after an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on Chris Jones negated a sack that would have set up an Indianapolis fouth-and-14 — the Colts drive down the field to score and take a 20-17 lead.
Starting from their own 30-yard line with 18 seconds (and three timeouts) remaining. Three plays later, Patrick Mahomes gave up his first interception of the season to seal the Indianapolis victory.
The Chiefs won the opening coin toss, deferring to the second half. Beginning their drive at their own 34-yard line after a kickoff return, the Colts went three-and-out on their opening drive.
On the ensuing punt, rookie Skyy Moore muffed the return — allowing the Colts to recover the fumble inside the five-yard line.
The Chiefs’ defense put together two stops to force third-and-goal at their own one-yard line. The Colts elected to pass, finding tight end Jelani Woods for a touchdown. After the extra point, the Colts had a 7-0 lead less than three minutes into the game.
On the Chiefs’ first possession, two Mahomes dropbacks started the drive — and neither did much. On third down, an attempt to an open wide receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling went too far. Kansas City had to settle for punting.
From their own 11-yard line, Indianapolis used three plays to move the sticks, using runs on all three downs. They got another set of downs with consecutive successful plays. Close to midfield, the Chiefs’ defense forced third down with six yards to convert. An attempted screen pass to a wide receiver was blown up by rookie cornerback Jaylen Watson, forcing another punt.
Having to start from their own one-yard line, the Chiefs settled for short gains on their first two plays. On third down, a shallow crosser to tight end Travis Kelce ended with a tackle just short of the first-down marker. Kansas City had no choice but to punt.
Trying to build on an early 7-0 lead, the Colts took over with two short gains to set up a third-and-one play. The Chiefs’ defensive front — highlighted by defensive linemen George Karlaftis and Khalen Saunders — stuffed running back Jonathan Taylor. Indianapolis elected to go for it, but cornerback L’Jarius Sneed got into the backfield on a blitz and forced a fumble while sacking quarterback Matt Ryan. The Colts recovered, but turned it over on downs.
With a short field to work with, the Chiefs initially couldn’t take advantage, quickly getting into third down with seven yards to go. To convert, Mahomes calmly found Kelce breaking away on an out-breaking pattern. It set up the Chiefs inside the five-yard line, where the connection happened again: another quick throw to Kelce scored from three yards out, getting the score to 7-6 late in the first quarter after Matt Ammendola missed an extra-point attempt.
To start the second quarter, the Chiefs forced another third down — this one with four yards to go. On a straight drop back, Ryan was able to find a receiver that cornerback Rashad Fenton was chasing — moving the sticks. On the next play, rookie Alec Pierce found room in front of Fenton again, getting past midfield with the gain.
With another third down to convert, Indianapolis picked on Fenton once more — getting a slant past the sticks for a new set of downs. The Chiefs’ defense continued putting the Colts into third down, with this one resulting in a tackle for loss by safety Juan Thornhill; he blew up the screen pass to the outside. The Colts settled for a field goal attempt, converting to take a 10-6 lead midway through second quarter.
Kansas City looked to answer, getting a quick first down with a reception by Valdes-Scantling. On the next play, a moving Mahomes was tracked down and sacked for a five-yard loss. On the ensuing incompletion on second down, pass interference was called on the Colts to move the chains. A scrambling Mahomes earned another first down soon after.
Near midfield, the Chiefs were forced into third down with nine yards to go. Rolling out, Mahomes went to wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster back across the field — but the ball was too low and hit the ground for an incompletion. The Chiefs had to punt with less than five minutes remaining in the half.
As the Colts began their drive, they got a big play through the air with rookie wide receiver Alec Pierce catching a contested pass over Jaylen Watson. A few plays later, defensive end Carlos Dunlap chased down a scrambling Ryan — forcing a fumble that was recovered by L’Jarius Sneed in Colts’ territory.
A quick pass to wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster got the Chiefs to the 11-yard line, then a quick pass to running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire on the angle route got the offense to the one-yard line at the two-minute warning.
After a failed rush attempt that featured defensive tackle Khalen Saunders lead blocking as a fullback, a defensive penalty reset the chains for the Chiefs — and they punched it in with Edwards-Helaire to take the lead. A two-point attempt resulted in a scrambling Mahomes finding Kelce at the goal line for a success, which stood after a very long review. Chiefs had a 14-10 lead with under two minutes left in the second quarter.
The Chiefs’ defense quickly got the Colts into a third-and-long situation on the following possession. The defensive line got pressure on Ryan during his drop back, but an incompletion got bailed out with a defensive holding penalty. On the next snap, defensive end Frank Clark got loose to earn an important sack. Clark had part in the next play not going very far, setting up third down — where they played it conservatively and ran it. A Chiefs timeout forced the Colts to punt with 44 seconds remaining.
The Chiefs got a chance to score one more time before intermission, setting up at their own 46-yard line. On the pass attempt, Mahomes nearly found wide receiver Justin Watson breaking open deep — but a holding penalty on right guard Trey Smith negated the result anyways. After another deep incompletion, the Chiefs decided to settle for their 14-10 lead at halftime by running out the clock.
Starting with the ball on their own 31-yard line, a false start on first down by left tackle Orlando Brown Jr. gave the unit an initial setback. However, two gains through the air by Smith-Schuster and Edwards-Helaire got them a first down past midfield, where a scrambling Mahomes got another new set of downs. The unit got into the red zone with a screen pass to Edwards-Helaire — who was split out wide.
They needed one yard to go on third down; Mahomes threw to a slanting Kelce, but the pass slightly behind him falls off his hands incomplete. On fourth down, Kansas City went to the fullback dive — where Michael Burton converted, as usual. On the following first down, Mahomes ran to the two-yard line to set up first and goal. After two failed runs, Mahomes couldn’t squeeze a pass into a tightly-covered Kelce.
The coaching staff elected to kick on fourth down, extending the lead to 17-10 with eight minutes left in the third quarter.
As the Colts took over, they moved the sticks on the ground initially. On the next play, linebacker Darius Harris blew up a pass to the flat. On the following third down, Ryan effectively found Taylor on a dump-off to earn the first down. After a 26-yard pass, the Colts entered the red zone — but found themselves in third down after an impressive run stop by Harris and Dunlap. Linebacker Nick Bolton came free on a blitz, and brought down Ryan for a significant sack.
Indianapolis had to settle for a 51-yard field that made the score 17-13 late in the third quarter.
Setting up from their own 12-yard line, the Chiefs gained short yardage on back-to-back plays from Edwards-Helaire. On third down, Mahomes found Kelce down the field, gaining 20 yards. Soon after, a pitch to running back Jerick McKinnon turned into a throw back to Mahomes — who tossed it to tight end Noah Gray for a gain of 26 yards into Indianapolis territory. It was one of the last plays before the end of the third quarter.
The Chiefs opened the fourth quarter with a first down courtesy of Valdes-Scantling. Looking to get into the red zone, the Chiefs’ pass offense couldn’t get a clean throw off — with Mahomes succumbing to pressure on back-to-back drop backs and forcing the team to settle for a field goal. They faked a field goal with punter Tommy Townsend rolling out left, but the pass went high of the target for an incompletion — keeping the score at 17-13.
The Colts began driving on their answering possession, with a big pass play coming on a throw that was nearly intercepted by L’Jarius Sneed. In Chiefs’ territory, the Colts had to convert another third down — and barely did with a pass at the sticks, beating tight coverage from safety Justin Reid. After a challenge by head coach Andy Reid, the play actually resulted in a fourth down with inches to convert.
On that snap, linebackers Nick Bolton and Darius Harris combined to stuff a leaping Jonathan Taylor and force the turnover on downs.
With ten minutes to go, the Chiefs tried to add to their lead starting at their own 31-yard line. After two negative plays, the third-down attempt needed 13 yards; Mahomes found Smith-Schuster just past the marker, and he took it another 30 or so yards into the red zone. The 53-yard play was followed up by a third down two snaps later, where a holding penalty was paired with an incompletion. To follow that up, the Chiefs missed the ensuing field goal attempt; the scoreboard continued to read 17-13.
As the Colts drove to answer, they worked themselves into fourth down and one yard to convert. They elected to go for it from their own 33-yard line, and succeeded with a sneak by Ryan.
Under six minutes remained in the game, and the Chiefs defense pushed into another third down. With seven yards to convert, the Chiefs blitzed Ryan with multiple defensive backs — but it was Bolton that ended up corralling him. However, the stop was negated by an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty called on defensive tackle Chris Jones
Trying to take advantage of the immature penalty by Jones, the Colts pushed into Chiefs territory — but once again found themselves in a short-yardage third down. A quick pass in traffic barely moved the sticks. After an eight-yard gain on first down, they moved the sticks with a big run by running back Nyheim Hines. That play got them to the two-minute warning.
A holding penalty set the Colts back 10 yards, but a draw to Taylor gained 12 yards. On the next play, Ryan found Pierce on the sideline — who beat Watson on a sideline route. From the Chiefs’ 12-yard line, Ryan threw past a blitzing Reid — but Watson broke this one up, another throw to Pierce.
With just over 30 seconds left, Ryan dropped back and found Woods against Thornhill; the tight end caught his second touchdown of the day — this one, giving his team a 20-17 lead with 24 seconds to go.
After a penalty on the Colts’ kickoff team, the Chiefs took advantage and got a big gain through the air from Valdes-Scantling. That set them up at the Colts’ 46-yard line, but the next throw was deflected up into the air and intercepted; one play later, the contest was over. 20-17, Colts win.
Wide receiver Mecole Hardman limped off the field following a play in the second quarter. He was back on the field a few plays later.
Right tackle Andrew Wylie stayed down after a play in the second quarter. Reserve tackle Prince Tega Wanogho replaced him in the lineup. A few snaps later, Wylie returned to the game.
Rookie safety Bryan Cook stayed down after the opening kickoff in the second half. He returned to the field later in the third quarter.
Rookie wide receiver Skyy Moore muffed the first punt of the game, setting up the Colts to score an easy touchdown to start the day. He didn’t field his second punt return, which ended up being downed at Kansas City’s one-yard line.
Kick returner Isiah Pacheco had five returns total, his longest going for 29 yards.
Punter Tommy Townsend has three punts. Two went inside the 20-yard line, including the punt late in the second quarter that pinned the Colts at their own one-yard line.
Kicker Matt Ammendola missed his first attempt at a point-after kick. In the third quarter, he converted a 26-yard field goal — after he initially got a penalty for delay of game. In the fourth quarter, the Chiefs didn’t trust him to kick a 42-yard field goal — setting up Townsend to throw on a fake; the pass fell incomplete.
Later in the game, Ammendola attempted a 34-yard field goal, but he missed the crucial kick.
|Yards per play||5.3||3.8|
|Yards per rush||2.50||3.00|
|Passing Gross Yards||262||222|
|Passing Net Yards||257||177|
|Yards per pass||6.90||4.20|
|Rushing first downs||6||5|
|Passing first downs||12||12|
|Penalty first downs||2||2|
|Third down (Made/Att/Pct)||3/10/30%||6/15/40%|
|Fourth down (Made/Att/Pct)||1/2/50%||1/3/33%|
|Goal to go (Made/Att/Pct)||2/3/67%||1/1/100%|
|Red Zone (Made/Att/Pct)||2/4/50%||2/3/67%|
|Extra Points (Made/Att)||1/2||2/2|
|Field Goals (Made/Att)||1/2||2/2|
|Two-Point Conv (Made/Att)||1/1||0/0|
|Gross Punting Avg Yds||56.7||51.3|
|Net Punting Avg Yds||53.3||47.3|
|Total Rtn Yds (No KOs)||12||10|
|Punt Returns (Num/Yds)||2/12||1/10|
|Kickoff Returns (Num/Yds)||5/94||2/57|
|Int Returns (Num/Yds)||0/0||1/0|
|Time of Possession||26:28||33:32|
|Michael Pittman Jr.||8||72||9.0||0||26||9||45|
|CHIEFS FUMBLES||FUM||LOST||FF||REC |
|Carlos Dunlap II||0||0||1||0||0||0||0|
|COLTS FUMBLES||FUM||LOST||FF||REC |
|Carlos Dunlap II||4||2||2||1.0||5.0||0||0||0||1||0||1||0|
|Rodney McLeod Jr.||4||2||2||0.0||0.0||1||0||2||0||0||0||0|
|Kenny Moore II||2||2||0||0.0||0.0||0||0||1||0||0||0||0|
|Isaiah Rodgers Sr.||2||2||0||0.0||0.0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Rodney Thomas II||2||2||0||0.0||0.0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Rodney McLeod Jr.||1||0||0.0||0||0|
|CHIEFS KICK RET||NO||YDS||AVG||LG||TD|
|COLTS KICK RET||NO||YDS||AVG||LG||TD|
|Isaiah Rodgers Sr.||2||57||28.5||31||0|
|CHIEFS PUNT RET||NO||YDS||AVG||LG||TD|
|COLTS PUNT RET||NO||YDS||AVG||LG||TD|