Chiefs chase different result in rematch with Indy

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 2, 2014 at 2:35 pm •  Published: January 2, 2014
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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Jamaal Charles spent this week dissecting the Chiefs' first game against the Colts.

On Saturday, Charles and his Kansas City teammates will finally get a chance to show they've learned from all those mistakes.

"They're going to have their best game plan and best players on the field," Charles said. "We know what's at stake here. We have to play fast and we have to play harder than them."

In Week 16, the Chiefs had four turnovers and Indianapolis (11-5) spent most of the game negating Charles by playing keep-away.

Nobody expects a replay this week — not Charles, not Andrew Luck, not even Andy Reid or Chuck Pagano. The two coaches understand most playoff rematches come with a surprise twist, even when the sequel is two weeks after the original.

How much can really change in 13 days?

For starters, the game will be played on Indianapolis' climate-controlled home turf rather than the raucous, outdoor atmosphere of Arrowhead Stadium. And facing a potentially loud crowd on the road may force the Chiefs to stick with the game plan a little longer than they did in Round 1.

"I'm sure we're going to see Jamaal," Pagano said, referring again this week to Charles as public enemy No. 1 even after he had only 13 carries in the first meeting. "If he doesn't touch the ball 30 times I'd be shocked."

Kansas City (11-5) could have a noticeably different look, too.

Receiver Dwayne Bowe was knocked out of the first matchup with a concussion and was still sidelined last week. Tamba Hali also hurt his knee against Indy, while fellow linebacker Justin Houston sat out that game with a dislocated elbow. Bowe has already been cleared to play and Houston is expected to return this week, too, though Hali hasn't practiced all week.

If Hali does play, he and Houston may force Luck to cope with even more pressure than just winning his home playoff debut.

But the bigger question for the Chiefs is whether they've fixed the miscues that proved so costly against the Colts two weeks ago.

"As a coach it's a little bit like a farmer: Your work is never done, right?" Reid said. "There are always areas to work on, and that's how it goes. We're always striving to be better."

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