The Kansas City Chiefs are still undefeated on the 2013 season after four games, largely thanks to a tough defense and a running game that has come alive in the fourth quarters of the games.
Better late than never
The fourth quarter has been when the Chiefs have gotten the bulk of their rushing yards. 199 of their 483 rushing yards on the season have come in the fourth quarter, allowing the Chiefs to protect the leads they have built in the first three quarters.
Few members of the Chiefs have enjoyed the fourth quarter as much as running back Jamaal Charles. Charles has gained 160 of his 289 rushing yards in the fourth quarter. Quarterback Alex Smith has also been at his most efficient in the final 15 minutes of games, completing 16 of 22 passes for a completion percentage just under 73%.
The Chiefs have also yet to give the ball away during the fourth quarter, a fact that has allowed the Chiefs’ defense to shine even more brightly in the games’ final periods.
How They’ve Gotten There
What’s put the Chiefs in position to be closing out games during the fourth quarters has been their defense through the first three quarters. In the first three quarters of their games the Kansas City defense has recorded six turnovers and fourteen sacks while allowing an average of just 5.25 points per game in the first three quarters.
While Smith has been his most efficient during the fourth quarter, he has been most productive during the first three quarters of games, throwing for 784 yards and five touchdowns in the first 45 minutes of Kansas City’s games to help put the Chiefs in the lead.
Kansas City is a team that has made major improvements since 2012 and is a playoff contender. The Chiefs have proven that if opponents allow them to take a lead to the fourth quarter, those opponents might as well pack it up for the day.