KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Saying you want one of the best rushing attacks in the league is one thing. Wearing hats with “Run The Damn Ball” embroidered on them is another.
But actually going out and making it happen on the field? In today’s NFL? Good luck with that.
Yet here are the Indianapolis Colts, flying home from Kansas City with a 19-13 road victory over the previously-undefeated Chiefs in a matchup in which the Colts’ run game not only collected yards in big chunks and moved the chains time and time again, but played a big role in controlling the clock to keep Patrick Mahomes and the high-powered Chiefs offense on the sideline.
“Ah man — to be honest that’s the best way (to win),” Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett said. “You know, that’s when you know you take a team’s will, when they know we’re running the ball, we know we’re running the ball, but we believe our guys are better. And today that was the case.”
The Colts (3-2) hoped to take advantage of the Chiefs’ struggles against the run, as Kansas City (4-1) came into Sunday night’s game allowing an NFL-worst 5.9 yards per carry on the ground.
Indianapolis did just that, as the Colts finished the game with 45 total rushing attempts for 180 yards — 132 of which coming from Marlon Mack.
But it’s the manner in which the Colts ran the ball that really proved a point in front of a national audience on Sunday night. Given how potent the Chiefs’ offense can be — their NFL record streak of 22 straight games scoring at least 26 points was snapped on Sunday — head coach Frank Reich and his team preferred to keep Mahomes on the sideline for as long as possible.
The Colts accomplished that feat — and then some. Thanks to a stout rushing performance, coupled with a dominant effort from its defense, Indy won the time-of-possession battle Sunday night 37:15 to 22:45.
“Coming in, we knew we wanted to control the ball,” Reich said. “We weren’t trying to play keepaway, but we wanted to run the football. And we did that. And in the end when we had to grind it out, we grinded it out, used a lot of clock, got up two scores, so a real credit to those guys up front and the backs. We just did a great job.”