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NFL playoffs 2019: Three takeaways from Chiefs' win over the Colts

Sporting News logo Sporting News 1/13/2019 Thomas Lott
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The Chiefs just got a Joe Montana-sized monkey of their back.

Kansas City took down the Colts 31-13 in the AFC divisional round to give the Chiefs their first playoff win at home since Montana led the team to a win over the Steelers on Jan. 8, 1994.

But it was a weird day in Kansas City. It was so weird Adam Vinatieri missed two kicks on a snow-covered surface that he usually treats like a balmy day in Florida.

Kansas City now awaits the winner of the Chargers-Patriots game, which will be played on Sunday.

Here are three takeaways from Saturday's win.

The Chiefs explode in most impressive offensive half to date

This Chiefs offense is historically great. Kansas City broke 25 franchise records on offense this season with Patrick Mahomes leading the way as he broke nine on his own and helped the team break another six. But Saturday's performance in the first half may be their most impressive to date on the season.

First this must be presented: While Kansas City torched Indy in the first half, the Colts came into the game having shut down a talented Texans offense the week before, and with a defense that was leading the league in fewest points allowed for the better part of the second half of the season.

Despite that though Kansas City went out and scored touchdowns on its first two drives of the game, added a field goal on the third and scored one last touchdown on the half. Oh yeah, and they did all of that without a single Mahomes passing touchdown.

And also, they did it in freezing temperatures on a wet ground with snow falling for most of the first quarter. Kansas City's first half was incredible.

Andrew Luck posts line worthy of Nathan Peterman

For 28:18 of the first half Andrew Luck wasn't Andrew Luck. He was more like Nathan Peterman.

That's not to say he became the butt of every joke on NFL Twitter, but it does mean he really struggled to start the game. Through the Colts' first four drives, Indianapolis picked up 21 total yards and went three and out four times.

Had Indy failed to drive the ball down the field in the two-minute drill, he would have accomplished something only Peterman had "accomplished" this season: he would have gone an entire half without picking up a single first down.

Peterman was the only man in the NFL to do that this season when the Bills failed to pick up a first down in the first half of their season opener against the Ravens. Luck was not at his best in the first half as the Colts were held scoreless.

Dee Ford set the tone from the start

What Dee Ford did on the Colts' first possession is why it can be great to kick off to start the game. The Chiefs linebacker immediately stuffed Marlon Mack on a running play that did more than just give Indianapolis a loss.

After stopping Mack, the Colts ran two straight pass plays that ended up short of a first down, and then on the next possession, Indy threw three straight passes. Ford's ability to get to Luck off the edge completely influenced Frank Reich's play-calling. By the time the Colts recovered, Kansas City was up 17-0.

He continued to bring pressure off the edge all game long which wouldn't allow Indy to get their run-pass option game going and the offense struggled to do anything for the rest of the game. Then for good measure, Ford had a strip sack at the end of the third quarter to remind everyone that this game was his.

Related slideshow: NFL playoffs (Provided by USA Today Sports)

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