- The Los Angeles Chargers will face the Kansas City Chiefs this week in a tough divisional matchup for the Bolts. The Bolts face a mist win, but Kansas City is showing that it is one of the league’s elite teams.
Here’s a look at what to expect in today’s game.
When the Chiefs Have the Ball:
The Chiefs rushing attack is ranked second In the NFL. They will undoubtedly challenge the Chargers’ 26th-ranked rushing defense. When the Chiefs throw the ball, Alex Smith and Travis Kelce will look to exploit the Chargers’ linebackers who have been poor in pass coverage through the first two games.
The Chargers’ defensive line and cornerbacks have played well this season and expect that to continue. The Chargers’ linebackers and safeties need to find a way to play at a faster tempo. They need to get to the running lanes faster and provide tighter coverage. The Bolts will need more from their linebackers and safeties than they have received in the first two games.
When the Chargers have the ball:
Philip Rivers will look to continue the hot hand, by throwing the ball. The Chargers all but abandoned the running game after one series last week and would be wise to do so again this week. The offensive line has had a very tough time with run blocking this far. Rivers should attack KC’s 27th-ranked pass defense.
On the flip side, the Chiefs will attempt to pressure Rivers as much as possible. With the Chargers’ running game struggling, Justin Houston and Chris Jones should be able to pin their ears back and attack the quarterback. If the offensive line struggles to pick up the pass rush, this could be a long day for Philip Rivers
The Chiefs may allow points to this Chargers’ offense, but the Chargers will struggle to stop the Chiefs’ running game. Smith and Kelce will both have big days as they exploit the soft center of the Chargers’ defense. Alex Smith could look to exploit the secondary deep, in the absence of Jason Verrett.
The Chargers’ offense will need to play its best game of the year in order to win. They would be smart to place less emphasis on the runing game. Keenan Allen, Tyrell Williams and Melvin Gordon will need receptions, and several of them.
In the final analysis, the Bolts surprise everyone and do just enough to earn their first win of the season.
Chargers 21, Chiefs 17
-Mike D’Abate is the Managing Editor for cover32.com/Chargers and covers the Los Angeles Chargers. He is also a National Content Writer for cover32.com and covers the NFL.
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