Publish Date: 12/16/2017
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa
Who would have thought that six weeks ago this game would be for the lead in the AFC West? The Chargers were struggling and losing close games and the Chiefs seemed to be maybe the best team in the entire AFC. My how times can change quickly in the NFL. Now the Chargers are the hot team and the Chiefs are struggling and this game has all of a sudden taken on tremendous meaning. So let’s take a look at the keys to the game.
Los Angeles Chargers (-1.5) at Kansas City Chiefs
RECORD VS. SPREAD – Los Angeles 7-5-1, Kansas City 7-6
SERIES RECORD – Chiefs lead 59-55-1
LAST MEETING – Chiefs beat Chargers 24-10, Sept. 24
LAST WEEK – Chargers beat Redskins 30-13; Chiefs beat Raiders 26-15
CHARGERS OFFENSE – OVERALL (5), RUSH (24), PASS (3)
CHARGERS DEFENSE – OVERALL (10), RUSH (29), PASS (3)
CHIEFS OFFENSE – OVERALL (6), RUSH (13), PASS (8)
CHIEFS DEFENSE – OVERALL (28), RUSH (30), PASS (28)
Stopping The Chargers Offense
Los Angeles is fifth in total offense (372.7 yards per game) and third in passing (273.2 ypg). The Chargers’ offensive line has been sensational, as quarterback Philip Rivers has been sacked a league-low 15 times. During the Chargers four game win streak they have averaged 465 yards in total offense a game and while the competition during those four games has net been the best this offense has developed into one of the best in the league. The Chiefs defense had struggled for a month before the Raiders came to town and even though they played well against the Raiders the Raiders are just not a very good team.
The Chiefs need a big game by Peters against the high-powered Chargers. Probably more important for Peters is to take care of his attitude. A series of embarrassing antics earned him a one-game suspension. The question needs to be asked if Peters’ return will help or hurt the team.
Quarterback Alex Smith, after a rough month, has played well the last couple of weeks but to win this game, the Chiefs must run the ball on the Chargers. The Chargers rank near the bottom against the run and if the run game has success against the Chargers Smith should be able to get the ball to his weapons.
Prediction: I know the ‘in’ thing here is to pick the Chargers, but the Chiefs are tough to beat at home and more importantly, the Chargers history of coming up short in big games worries me here. So basing this off history, I am going with the Chiefs in a close one.
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