No Offensive Touchdowns? No Problem!
By Jerry Tapp
The Kansas City Chiefs are the only undefeated team in the NFL at 9-0. Not only is that a surprise to many NFL experts and fans, but the Chiefs seem to be winning games with a less-than-powerful offense and an opportunistic defense that is not only shutting teams down, but their "D" is putting points on the board.
Last Sunday's game against the Buffalo Bills was a perfect example. The Chiefs offense had nine possessions; they scored three times, but each score was a field goal. They did not have an offensive TD in the game. They did, however, have two defensive TDs; one an interception return, the other a fumble return for six points.
Kansas City's win without an offensive TD was only the second time that has happened this season. The New York Giants on Oct. 27 defeated the Eagles 15-7 behind five field goals. Since 2000, teams that did not score an offensive TD in a game have won only 93 games and lost 590, a dismal .136 winning percentage. This season, it has happened 22 times with the Giants and Chiefs gaining the only wins. Last season there were 49 times when a team did not have an offensive TD; those teams won seven and lost 42.
Here's a look at the numbers of times NFL teams have won a game since 2000 when they did not score an offensive TD.
6: Detroit, Tampa Bay
5: Cincinnati, Pittsburgh
4: Chicago, Cleveland, Green Bay, Tennessee
3: Arizona, Kansas City, New England, NY Giants, Oakland, San Francisco, St. Louis, Washington
2: Buffalo, Carolina, Dallas, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Minnesota, NY Jets, Seattle
1: Atlanta, Denver, Houston, Miami, Philadelphia
0: New Orleans, San Diego
The Cleveland Browns had the most games since 2000 with no offensive TDs with 51. The closest team to them were the Bills with 35. The Indianapolis Colts have had the fewest games with no offensive touchdowns since 2000 with seven. They are followed by San Diego with eight, New Orleans with nine and the Packers with 10.
Here's another interesting tidbit about Kansas City's win over Buffalo on Sunday: The Chiefs defensive unit scored on an interception and fumble return. It was the fourth time this season that has happened in the NFL (the Cowboys, Rams and Bears each scored on an interception and fumble return in a game this year) and the 109th time since 1970 that a team had at least one interception return and a fumble return in a game. Teams that have scored in this manner in a game were 97-12 in those games, an .890 winning percentage. The last time a team has lost when they scored defensive TDs via an interception and fumble return in a game was in 2003 when Tampa Bay lost to Indianapolis 38-35 in overtime despite those two defensive scores.