The Washington Times-Herald

December 21, 2012

Colts vs Chiefs pregame capsule

Tom James
Tribune Star Correspondent

INDIANAPOLIS — The game -- Indianapolis Colts (9-5, 3-2 AFC South) at Kansas City Chiefs (2-12, 0-5 AFC West), 1 p.m. (ET), Arrowhead Stadium (Grass), Kansas City, MO.

Coverage -- CBS Sports (Bill Macatee, Steve Tasker); Colts Radio Network (Bob Lamey, Will Wolford, Kevin Lee); Sirius NFL Radio (Channel 132, Colts; Channel 113, Chiefs); XM NFL Radio (Channel 232, Chiefs).

The coaches -- Colts: Bruce Arians, interim (8-3, 1st year with Indianapolis). Chiefs: Romeo Crennel (28-53, 3rd year with Houston).

The series -- 19th regular-season meeting. Colts lead series, 10-8. The Colts have won seven of their last nine regular season meetings with Kansas City, including two of the last three. Counting post-season games, Indianapolis has won 10 of the last 12 games between the two franchises. Kansas City, however, registered a 28-24 win over Indianapolis in 2011 at Lucas Oil Stadium (10/9/11). The Colts haven't played at Arrowhead Stadium in a regular-season game since 10/31/04 when Kansas City posted a 45-35 victory. The last four meetings between the Colts and Chiefs, including playoff games, have been played in Indianapolis. The Colts have won all three post-season meetings, (10-7, 1/7/96; 38-31, 1/11/04; 23-8, 1/6/07). Indianapolis has an overall mark of 7-4 in games played at Arrowhead Stadium. The Colts are 5-4 in home games with Kansas City and 5-4 in away games with the Chiefs. In last season's matchup, Chiefs QB Matt Cassel threw four touchdown passes, two each to Dwayne Bowe and Steve Breaston, as Kansas City rallied from a 17-point deficit.

Notes – Interim coach/offensive coordinator Bruce Arians coached for Kansas City from 1989-1992…--With a win, the Colts would clinch a playoff berth. Indianapolis would also secure the 12th 10-win season in the last 14 years…The Colts can become the fourth team in NFL history to win 10 or more games following a season with two or fewer victories…Indianapolis goes into the Kansas City game with a 9-5 overall record and are 6-4 against AFC opposition. The Colts will finish the regular season with the Chiefs this week and Houston next Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium…QB Andrew Luck has passed for a rookie franchise record 3,978 yards so far this season. Luck needs 74 yards passing over the final two weeks of the regular season to surpass Cam Newton's total of 4,051 yards for the most passing yards by a rookie quarterback in NFL history…Luck has guided the Colts to six game-winning drives in the fourth quarter or overtime this season. That's the most by a rookie quarterback since at least the 1970 NFL/AFL merger…Luck's nine wins this season are the most by a rookie quarterback who was drafted No. 1 overall in the Super Bowl era (since 1966)…Luck needs 12 more passing attempts and 19 completions to pass former Colts QB Peyton Manning for the most in both categories in franchise history by a rookie quarterback. Manning set both records (575 passing attempts and 326 completions) in 1998…Over the past two games, rookie RB Vick Ballard is averaging 99.5 yards per game. Ballard had a career-best 105 rushing yards in last week's lossat Houston…WR Reggie Wayne has 12,942 career receiving yards. Wayne needs 58 receiving yards to become the 14th player in NFL history with 13,000 career receiving yards…Wayne needs 97 receiving yards to reach 100 for the fourth time in his career and tie for the second most such seasons in NFL history…In seven career games with the Chiefs, Wayne has caught 36 passes for 528 yards and has four touchdowns…Rookie WR T.Y. Hilton leads all NFL rookies with four `00-yard receivivng games. Hilton also tops all NFL rookies with six touchdown receptions…Hilton (six) now is two touchdown receptions behind Bill Brooks and Marvin Harrison for the club rookie record…Hilton needs one TD reception to tie John Mackey and Austin Collie (7) for the third-most by a rookie in Colts history…Rookie TE Dwayne Allen is now three catches away from the Colts rookie record for tight ends (Ken Dilger, 42)…OLB Dwight Freeney has 105.5 career sacks, the first most among active players…In five career games against Kansas City, Freeney has registered 3.5 career sacks and a forced fumble…OLB Robert Mathis has recorded eight sacks in 10 games this season…Mathis has two sacks and two forced fumbles in six career games against the Chiefs…PK Adam Vinatieri has connected on 22-of-27 field goals with a series best 53-yard field goal against Kansas City…ILB Pat Angerer had 15 tackles (four solo) in last year's loss to the Chiefs.

Did you know? – Chiefs OG Ryan Lilja played for Indianapolis from 2004-09. He started for the Colts in both Super Bowl games in 2006 and 2009.

Stat of the week -- Twenty players have missed a combined 104 games this season due to injuries.

The game plan -- Once again, the Colts will attempt to get off to a strong start in Kansas City.

Indianapolis did a better job of starting a game last week against the Texans, but sluggish starts have been one of the Colts' biggest issues in road games.

The Colts had only one offensive turnover in the Houston loss, but it was a big one (fumble on the goal line). Indianapolis has to hold on to the football and score touchdowns in the red zone.

Defensively, control the run. And be aggressive up front. Kansas City has had issues holding on to the football. The Colts have to be able to force turnovers and control the game.

Key matchups -- Colts QB Andrew Luck vs. Chiefs pass defense. Indianapolis' offense is ranked ninth in the NFL, averaging 374.7 yards per game. The Colts' passing game is ranked eighth (267.8). Kansas City's pass defense is ranked seventh overall in the league, allowing 215.6 yards per game.

Chiefs QB Brady Quinn vs. Colts OLBs Dwight Freeney/Robert Mathis. Quinn is hurt going on, still suffering the effects of a rib injury, has been sacked 16 times this season. As a team, Kansas City has allowed 35 sacks. Freeney and Mathis rank No. 1 and No.2 all-time in franchise history in sacks.

Colts WR Reggie Wayne vs. Chiefs secondary. Wayne has caught a team-high 97 passes this season for 1,234 yards and four touchdowns. LCB Brandon Flowers has a team-high three interceptions for Kansas City. The Chiefs have allowed 25 touchdown passes this season.