A week since their battle with Los Angeles Chargers QB Justin Herbert, the Kansas City Chiefs defense is ready for the next challenge.
A visit to Indianapolis to face the Colts means that stopping their All-Pro running back, Jonathan Taylor, will be the top priority. The first two weeks have been focused on star quarterbacks, but it will be the running game that will be featured often in the Colts’ playbook. Taylor led the league in rushing with 1,811 yards last season, something the Chiefs defense is well aware of heading into Sunday’s game.
Chiefs linebacker Nick Bolton respects Taylor’s ability and is ready for the challenge, as discussed during Wednesday’s press conference.
“He’s special— an elite running back in this league,” said Bolton. “When the ball is in his hands, he can get north and south quick, and in a hurry, and break tackles in the second and third levels. So, we’ve got to make sure that we set a front with our seven guys and attack the hip and make sure we make tackles in space. That’s going to be the name of this game.”
Taylor also caught 40 passes out of the backfield last season, making him a dual threat on the ground and in the passing game. With Colts quarterback Matt Ryan still adjusting to his new team, the Chiefs defense will want to force him into tough passing downs. That will mean winning on early downs and getting Taylor on the ground.
It’ll prove challenging sans Willie Gay Jr., who is suspended for the next four weeks of the season. Bolton expects the linebacker room to rally and take advantage when they’re out on the field.
“Next man up, that’s kind of the mindset we have right now,” Bolton said. “We got a lot of guys coming in every single day putting work in since training camp to give us the opportunity to go out there and play our best. We’re gonna keep stacking days and when we get Willie back, we’ll be ready to go. He’s gonna be missed, but we gotta keep going.”