Kansas City Chiefs vs Indianapolis Colts Matchup Preview - September 25th, 2022


The Indianapolis Colts come in as 5.5 point home underdog as they play the Kansas City Chiefs at Lucas Oil Stadium Sunday. The last time these two teams played each other was Week 5 in 2019. That game resulted in a home win for the Colts with a final score of 19-13.

Kansas City's biggest strength has been their offense, ranking #1 in the league with 457 yards per game. They've achieved offensive success largely through the quality of their passing attack, which is #1-best in football with 369 yards per game. Perhaps because the defense has to take their pass game so seriously, the Chiefs have also managed to rush for 4.44 yards per carry, which puts them in the top 10. It's no wonder they've done so well through the air when their offensive line ranks #2 in the league in pass protection. It's also worth noting that opposing defenses have stacked the box a whopping 9.3% of the time against the Chiefs in an attempt to stop the run game. But because passing is so much more important for an offensive to run effectively, this has opened up opportunities for Kansas City's offense to succeed through the air. In terms of their defense, the Chiefs have ranked #26 in the league in total yards allowed per game. Opposing offenses have passed for 262 yards per game through the air against them (#30 in football). On the ground, opposing ball-carriers have ranked #25 with 4.74 yards per carry. Positionally, perhaps their best defensive asset has been their cornerbacks, which rank #9 in the league in locking down route-runners. Kansas City has been least effective in shutting down opposing running backs, giving up 50 yards per game (#2-worst).

Indianapolis's primary advantage has been their run offense, which ranks #1 in football at 5.45 yards per carry. The most important component of a strong ground game is a good offensive line. If the line isn't opening up holes and creating space, it doesn't matter how good a team's running backs are. To that point, Indianapolis's line ranks #8-best in the league in run blocking. When it comes to their defense, the Colts check in at #16 in football when it comes to total yards allowed per game. Opposing air attacks have notched 237 yards per game against Indianapolis this year (#21 in football). Opposing ball-carriers have ranked #11 against them with 4.31 yards per ground attempt. This Colts defense hits their peak effectiveness when it comes to defending opposing wide receivers, keeping them in check at just 7.41 yards per target (#5-best in the league). Indianapolis's defensive effectiveness bottoms out when it comes to defending opposing tight ends, who have scorched them for 63 yards per game (#1-worst in the league).

Kansas City Chiefs Insights

  • The Sharp Model projects this game to see the smallest volume of plays run among all games this week at 128.8 plays, given the tendencies of each team and game dynamics.

  • Patrick Mahomes's throwing efficiency has improved this year, accumulating 9.08 yards-per-target vs a measly 7.75 mark last year.

  • The Kansas City Chiefs pass defense has not been good when opposing TEs have gotten into space, giving up an average of 5.67 yards-after-the-catch since the start of last season: the 10th-most in football.

Indianapolis Colts Insights

  • The weatherman calls for 15-mph wind in this game. High wind generally means reduced pass volume (and increased run volume) and worse passing efficiency.

  • Nyheim Hines has totaled a colossal 8.0 air yards per game since the start of last season: 98th percentile among RBs. (That may not sound like a lot, but most RBs have negative air yards because they are targeted behind the line of scrimmage).

  • The Indianapolis Colts have incorporated play action on 33.6% of their passing plays since the start of last season (5th-most in football), tricking the defense into thinking it's a run and leading to much higher passing efficiency.

Betting Trends

  • The Indianapolis Colts have hit the Team Total Under in their last 5 games (+5.00 Units / 90% ROI)

  • The Kansas City Chiefs have hit the Game Total Over in their last 5 away games (+5.00 Units / 91% ROI)

  • Patrick Mahomes has hit the Passing Yards Under in 14 of his last 20 games (+6.70 Units / 27% ROI)