That was ugly.
The Kansas City Chiefs, with a chance to all but lock up the AFC West, were embarrassed by the San Diego Chargers 31-0 at Qualcomm Stadium in front of a raucous crowd of 66,780. The Chiefs still control their own destiny with a one-game lead and three games left in the season, but looked like anything but a first-place team Sunday.
The Chargers marched down the field on their first drive for a touchdown and never looked back.
Brodie Croyle moved his record to 0-10 as a starter, though he never got any help. The Chiefs league leading rushing offense only managed 48 yards and Dwayne Bowe turned in his second straight miserable game after his 7-game hot streak. On the night, Kansas City went a miserable 0-11 on third down conversions.
Then of course there was the defense that looked completely disinterested in standing up to the Chargers offense. Mike Tolbert, Ryan Mathews and Darren Sproles led a three headed rushing attack that tallied 207 yards and 2 touchdowns. San Diego QB Philip Rivers “only” threw for 2226 yards but was an efficient 18 for 24 with two beautifully thrown touchdown passes to beat Brandon Flowers and Javier Arenas. San Diego converted 11 of 15 third downs.
Todd Haley will have to find a way to get his team to win on the road if they have any interest in holding off the Chargers for the division title.
I don’t know that anyone on the Chiefs deserves to be recognized after this performance, but here are the best of the worst on offense, defense and special teams.
Offense: Tyler Palko
He only played on the Chiefs last possession of the game and contributed to that 0-11 on third down, but Palko managed to convert something when he hit Chris Chambers for 10 yards on a 4th and 4.
On the day (or series), Palko was 2-3 passing for 8 yards and a team-best 2.7 yards per completion.
Yes, the performance of the Kansas City offense was this bad.
Defense: Eric Berry
The Chiefs only delivered two big plays on defense. Berry’s interception of Philip Rivers and Tamba Hali’s sack/strip of Rivers. Berry gets the nod here, but really either player could get this honor since everything else about the Kansas City defense was terrible.
The Chargers led 21-0 and were driving for a fourth score when Rivers threw to no one in particular down the left sideline. Berry flew to the ball, bobbled and hauled in the pass just as he got his toes down and fell out of bounds.
Unfortunately for the Chiefs and Berry, the big play didn’t have a chance to deliver points because Bowe dropped what would have been a first down completion, giving the Chiefs yet another 3-and-out.
Special Teams: Verran Tucker
Dustin Colquitt was a busy man with his 8 punts and could go here, but Tucker deserves the attention for his continued effort on the coverage units. The undrafted free agent was good for 4 special teams tackles.
Tucker also returned two kicks for 40 yards.