Welcome back to the Thirsty Thursday Shot of the Week. Before we continue, let’s talk about last week’s game between the Jaguars and Titans. Two words: Derrick Henry.
Pick: Titans -5.5. Win
Season record: 10-4-2
In the final Thursday Night Football game of the year, they saved the best for last. The 10-3 Los Angeles Chargers take on the 11-2 Kansas City Chiefs. This game has HUGE playoff implications as the winner will take control of the AFC West as well as be in the driver’s seat for home field advantage throughout the playoffs. It’s going to be a good one.
Los Angeles Chargers vs. Kansas City Chiefs -3.5 – 8:20 PM Fox / NFL Network
Week 14 Recap
Both the Chargers and Chiefs had to grind out wins against two different types of teams. The Chargers held on to beat the down-and-out Bengals by 5 points. The Chiefs pulled out a win in overtime over the playoff-contending Ravens. Everyone is talking about the no-look pass from Patrick Mahomes, but his pass to Tyreek Hill on 4th and 9 to extend the drive is what I will remember the most.
Battle of MVP Candidates
We all know the deal with Patrick Mahomes. 4,300 yards, 43 TDs, 11 INTs has placed him in the battle with Drew Brees for the NFL MVP. However, do not sleep on Philip Rivers. Rivers has made an MVP case for himself with 29 TDs, 6 INTs, and a career high quarterback rating of 114.5. The only thorn in Rivers’s side has been his lack of success against the Chiefs with a 13-13 career record with 36 TDs and 31 INTs.
Chiefs Dominance Over Chargers And The AFC West
In recent history, to say that the Chiefs have not only dominated the Chargers, but the entire division would be an understatement. The Chiefs are 9-0 SU and 7-2 ATS in their last 9 matchups against the Chargers. (The last Charger win was December 29, 2013.) Furthermore, since the middle of the 2015 season, the Kansas City is 20-1 SU and 15-6 ATS against AFC West opponents.
Can The Chargers Defense Stop The Chiefs Offense In Kansas City?
The Chargers have a very good defense. With Joey Bosa wreaking havoc up front and Derwin James flying around in the secondary, it’s no surprise that Los Angeles allows the 7th least points per game at 20.8. However, the Chiefs are a matchup nightmare on offense. Mahomes, Hill, and Kelce continue to put up staggering numbers. Even without Kareem Hunt and now Spencer Ware, Damien Williams can step in and not miss a beat as evidenced by his 2 TDs last week. The Chiefs average the most points in the league at 36.2 points per game and most yards per game with 437.5. Plus, in Kansas City, their average margin of victory is two touchdowns.
The Chargers and Chiefs are both two playoff teams that can make deep runs into January. It’s a shame that one will have to go on the road during Wildcard Weekend. That being said, even though the Chargers are road warriors (5-1 on road this season), the Chiefs are a different animal. The winning streak continues.