**"A TOUGH TEAM"
Kansas City brings an undefeated 3-0 record into Sunday's match-up with the Colts and the AFC West leader can look to, among other things, an effective one-two punch at the running back position for its success.
Former New York Jet Thomas Jones, along with Jamaal Charles, has the Chiefs rushing offense ranked third in the NFL behind Houston and the New York Jets.
Charles leads the Chiefs with 238 yards on 34 carries, while Jones has 217 yards on 52 rushes.
"They have a real fine offensive line that's certainly blocking extremely well and backs that are running the ball," Colts Head Coach Jim Caldwell said. "One guy (Charles) is averaging over seven yards a carry, Jones is obviously up over four and they are doing a lot of things well."
Colts defensive captain and eighth-year veteran middle linebacker Gary Brackett spoke of the challenge the defense will face this Sunday.
"They are a tough team," Brackett said in the locker room Wednesday. "Those guys do a good job running the football, have two very tough backs and have probably the best offensive line we've faced. Those guys do a great job moving the pile and we definitely have our work cut out for us, and will have to go out there and get that run stopped."
Stopping the run also is critical to the Colts' pass rush. Caldwell said teams are leaving more blockers in to help with Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis' ability to get to the quarterback, and third-and-manageable situations are allowing them to do so.
"I think people go to some extra lengths to try and make certain that they do not put themselves in position to let our guys get an up-the-field rush going, but part of that is also making certain that you stop the run," Caldwell said. "You force them into those situations.
"I do think that we have control over some of those aspects. If we play like we are supposed to play and know how to play, I think those opportunities will come back to us."
Brackett said that after reviewing at the tape against Jacksonville, he saw a few things the defense can shore up to help get the Colts back to pressuring the quarterback and being successful against the run. And one item in particular caught his eye.
"I think we have to be more effective tacklers," Brackett said. "When we have a guy for a two-yard gain, we have to keep it a two-yard gain. You can't give them another six. Other areas are getting off the field on third downs. I think we were something like 9-of-13 on third down. You can't win with that high of a percentage. Those two things, if we can take care of them, we'll be all right."
READY TO HELP
Aaron Francisco is no stranger to the Indianapolis Colts. He started two of 10 games with the team last season, and after spending training camp with the Carolina Panthers, he re-signed with the Colts on Tuesday after the club placed Melvin Bullitt on injured reserve.
"It's obviously good to come back to a team you have already been to as opposed to going to a team where you have to learn all new stuff, so it is real good to be back here," Francisco said. "Just the fact that I played here last year, I still remember a lot of the stuff. It's coming back to me quickly and it will be good for me and good for the team."
That is a sentiment that Colts Head Coach Jim Caldwell shares with the returning safety.
"He's been in it (the defense) and certainly has been immersed in the things that we do and understands it, so it is not as much of an issue on getting him up to speed," Caldwell said.
Francisco was not the only player joining the Colts this week.
Wide receiver Kenny Moore, who spent the past two seasons primarily with the Carolina Panthers, also was signed.
With the Colts also placing running back and returner Devin Moore on injured reserve Tuesday, Kenny Moore said he hopes to help the Colts in the return game as well, but he is focused on contributing wherever he is needed.
"It helps that you are not coming in blind and do not know where you are going to be," Moore said. "This is more of, 'We need this,' so you have the opportunity to step in and take it and go with it.
"You definitely have to be flexible. The more you can do, the more valuable you are. Flexibility is key."
According to Caldwell, Moore has been on the Colts radar since he came out of Wake Forest in 2008.
"We had an opportunity to evaluate him when he was coming out of college and he is certainly a guy with good hands who has ability, but we get a chance to see him up close and personal here the next couple of days," Caldwell said.
Caldwell credited the club's personnel department, in particular Colts President Bill Polian, Vice President and General Manager Chris Polian and Director of Player Personnel Tom Telesco, during Wednesday's press conference for finding players available during the season that best fit the Colts' scheme.
Sometimes that includes a player who has played with the Colts before, like Francisco, and at times it involves a player like Moore.
"That would be ideal, but it doesn't always happen that way, particularly when you are looking at short turnarounds," Caldwell said. "The more they know the better, but that is not always the case. Sometimes you do not have that luxury and therefore you have to start from scratch."
PASSING OFFENSE LEADS AFC/NFL
Indianapolis' prolific passing offense tops the NFL in several categories heading into its Week 5 contest against the Kansas City Chiefs.
Peyton Manning leads the NFL with a 112.2 passer rating, completing 120-of-172 passes this season for 11 touchdowns and one interception.
Manning is number one in completions and touchdowns and is second in attempts, completion percentage and yards. He also leads the NFL in fourth-quarter passing, completing 33-of-46 attempts for 521 yards, compiling an NFL-best 71.7 completion percentage to go along with a 145.3 QB rating.
Colts receivers Reggie Wayne, Austin Collie and Dallas Clark lead the AFC in receptions as the number one, two and three receivers, respectively.
Wayne leads the NFL with 33 catches and 456 yards, while Collie's 32 receptions and five touchdowns rank tied for second in the NFL, and his 398 yards rank third.
Clark is third in AFC receptions with 28 receptions, and also has 275 yards and three touchdown receptions. His next touchdown catch from Manning will be the duo's 45th, tying Drew Bledsoe and Ben Coates for the most in NFL history by a quarterback-tight end duo.