Thats right baby! The Chargers are back and everyone else is a big time loser! Are they still one of the worst teams in the NFL? Yes. But are they now only 2 games back on the chiefs for command of the division? Also yes! Never doubted my boys!
The Chargers (3-5) very much lucked out due to the cowardice of Matt Nagy and walked out of Chicago with a win for the first time since 1970.
This was one of the worst games I've seen the Chargers play and they still walked away with a W. They couldn't get ANYTHING going on the ground (They're the first team in the super bowl era to go four games in a row without 40 rushing yards), and never got a rhythm through the air. Rivers continued to look not great, finishing 19/29 with 201 yards, a pick and a TD to Ekeler. Melvin didn't get shit going until a 19-yard touchdown run where he looked very much like his old self.
Defensively, they were pretty great in the pass rush. 4 sacks and and the ton of pressure on Trubisky says as much. They also knocked down 8 passes while dropping at least 5 surefire picks. Casey Hayward hauled one in, thank god, and they also recovered a fumble. Forcing turnovers has been a problem for this unit all year, so it was awesome to finally get some on the road. Have a day, Joey Bosa!!!
Notes: They were obviously extremely lucky. Pinero missing the FG early on was a blessing, and Nagy's strategy at the end of the game was even more fortunate. They had the ball with a timeout, a full minute to play, and all the momentum. They should have kept going and at least run one one more run considering they were averaging no less than 2000 YPC. Literally 5 more yards makes Pinero's miss go in. But whatever, a win is a win. No we have a worse draft pick and an already extremely tough position considering so many NFL teams suck shit. Easton Stick, Michael Badgley, Justin Jackson, Cortez Broughton, Brandon Mebane, Justin Jones and Jatavis Brown were all inactive. Okung made a long awaited return but left with a calf injury. They host Green Bay on Sunday.
The Chiefs (5-3) had a closer game than I expected considering the injuries, but they still fell 31-24 to the streaking Packers.
Let's just start with this: The Chiefs were without Mahomes, Frank Clark, Chris Jones, Eric Fisher (who inexplicably is missed on this offensive line) and Kendall Fuller. That's a pretty devastating group of injuries to overcome, and they couldn't do it. It's not the end of the world, and the fact that it was sorta close is impressive. Matt Moore played well, hitting most of his marks and finishing 24/36 with 267 yards and 2 touchdowns. Tyreek and Kelce took the lion's share of those yards, making up for the inability of McCoy and the Williams to break one off in the run game. The offensive line was quite bad, as expected, giving up 2 sacks and 7 hits. Not great!
Defensively, they simply had no answer for Aaron Jones at all. He totalled 226 yards and 2 scores while totally abusing the linebackers. They had a solid pass rush game considering the absence of Clark and Jones, sacking Rodgers 5 times and hitting him 12 times. But they just couldn't do shit when Rodgers checked down to Jones. Literally nothing.
Notes: While the other losses weren't cause for concern, we're now in the territory where these losses matter. They're only 2 games ahead of Oakland and LA for the lead of the division, and this team is not looking like one that could beat New England in the playoffs. They play the Vikings next.
The Raiders (3-5) played one of the better teams in the AFC well for most of the game, but ultimately fell to the Texans 27-24
Offensively, it was one of the better games from Carr this year. he had 285 yards and 3 TDs without a pick or a sack. Tyrell was outstanding in his return, totalling 91 yards to compliment Hunter Renfrow's 65-yard touchdown. The one surprising non-factor in the yardage game was Darren Waller, who caught an 8-yard TD but was otherwise bottled up. Josh Jacobs had another strong showing, averaging 4.4 YPC with 66 yards.
On defense, they had a relatively strong start holding Watson to a TD and 2 field goals through 3 quarters. The game is about how you finish, though, and they totally lost him in the 4th quarter. They let Darren Fells catch 2 scores on the Texans final 2 drives of the game, while letting Watson break free with his legs to extend drives multiple times. They had 3 sacks which is great vs a mobile QB, but they blew this effort. You can't play like that to close a game and win.
Notes: Like the Chargers, they are 2 games back on Kansas City for command of the division. In this unexpected crapshoot of a division, anything is possible. Dakota Allen, Keelan Doss, Kasim Edebali, DeShone Kizer, Corey Liuget, Brandon Parker and Marcell Ateman were all inactive. They host Detroit on Sunday.
The Broncos (2-6) are still a team in the National Football League. They Lost 15-13 to the Colts
They host Cleveland on Sunday!