The San Diego Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs will meet for the first time in 2009 this Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium.
The Chiefs hold an edge in the series with a record of 50-47-1, but the Chargers have won 4 out of the last 5 games. Last season the Chargers won both games again Kansas City but each game was only a one point victory. As of right now San Diego is favored by 5 points this Sunday.
The two teams seem to be traveling in opposite directions, with the Chargers loosing to the Broncos last week 34-32 and the Chiefs getting their first win of the season last Sunday by topping the Redskins 14-6.
So far this year Phillip Rivers has thrown for 622 yards more than his counterpart on the Chiefs, Matt Cassel, but both quarterbacks have the same number of passing touchdowns with 7.
The Chiefs have been far more effective than the Chargers this year running the ball (in fact so has the other 30 teams in the NFL since the Chargers are dead last in rushing yards per game this year). The Chiefs are averaging 98 yards rushing, led by Larry Johnson with 309 yards thus far, and the Chargers are averaging just 57 yards rushing, led by LaDainian Tomlinson with 140 yards.
Both defenses are giving up a ton yards to their opponents this year, the Chargers are allowing 358 yards per game and Chiefs a whopping 379 yards. The Chiefs are doing slightly better the Chargers in stopping the run, but not by much. Chiefs are allowing 130 yards per game and the Chargers are allowing 141 yards per game on the ground.
The Chargers are scoring more points per game but the Chiefs are allowing more points per game.
The Chiefs made major changes are the end of last season, hiring a new coach, Todd Haley and then bringing in a quarterback to build around, Matt Cassel. The Chargers didn’t make any big changes coming into this year, in fact they were supposed to be primed to run through the AFC West and march all the way to the Super Bowl. But the reality is, if the Chiefs win Sunday both teams will have 2 wins so far this year.
If the Chargers want to have any hope of staying in the playoff hunt, they really need to win Sunday and bring their record to 3-3. The AFC West may already be out of reach, with the red hot Broncos still perfect through 6 weeks, but there are a lot of weeks left in the season.
If the Broncos do run off with the AFC West, the Wild Card will still be available if the Chargers can take the remainder of the season one game at a time and turn their season around – before it’s too late.