Chargers suffer a rash of injuries as they fall to Chiefs 30-13

30-13. The Chargers lost a very winnable game by three scores and threw away almost any realistic chance at a division title with it. The "old Chargers" were back with a vengeance, committing a number of miscues in just about every facet of the game.

Miscues and injuries were the story of the game. Most of the media will attempt to blame Philip Rivers and his three interceptions but that is misguided. The first interception was a bad throw, but there appeared to be a miscommunication with the intended receiver. The second was on a fourth down and with everybody covered, Rivers just had to throw it up rather than take a sack. The interception was actually better for the team than an incompletion would've been because it resulted in worse field position for the Chiefs. The third interception was a desperation heave on third and 20 down 17 when the game was already over and didn't mean anything.

The real story of the game was the injuries. Linebacker Denzel Perryman went down early and the Chargers got shredded on the ground after he left.  After Perryman left, Kareem Hunt took off, gaining 155 yards on the ground. Both starting offensive tackles, Russell Okung and Joe Barksdale, left the game with injuries as did numerous other players on both sides of the ball.

The Chargers actually moved the ball pretty well most of the night, but either turned the ball over or stalled around midfield consistently. The offensive line was having its worst night of the season even before the injuries hit, getting beat routinely and allowing constant pressure on Rivers. The O-lines awful play is made even worse by the fact that the Chiefs had one of the worst pass-rushes in the league entering tonight.

Rookie Austin Ekeler, who's been dynamic most of the season, had a crucial lost fumble when the Chargers were down seven late in the game and driving. Another critical moment that's already been all but forgotten in the coverage of the game due to how early it happened was the missed opportunity to jump on a muffed punt. In the first quarter, Tyreek Hill muffed a punt and the ball rolled all the way back to the Chiefs five yard line. Multiple Chargers had shots at the ball but ended up colliding and the Chiefs recovered. It was a huge momentum shift as the Chargers would've surely struck first in the game had they recovered.

Keenan Allen also got hurt, although it's unclear how serious his injury is. The Chargers now have a long week before they play their next game, on the road against the Jets. The Chargers still have a shot at the playoffs, but will certainly need to win their next two games against the Jets and Raiders as well as having several other dominos fall.


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