“No disrespect, however that’s simply their sport plan,” stated Hitchens, who additionally caught an interception. “They don’t wish to kick area objectives, they wish to go for it, then we now have to make them pay.”
The Kansas Metropolis offense, in comparison with the requirements it set by successful the A.F.C. in back-to-back seasons, had additionally underwhelmed. As soon as an intimidating juggernaut, the unit this yr appeared mortal. Following the blueprint Tampa Bay deployed within the Tremendous Bowl, groups have used two-high safeties to fight Kansas Metropolis’s downfield strikes, forcing them to be disciplined of their method by means of working and shorter passes.
By way of Week 12, opposing groups used two-safety lineups on 72 % of Kansas Metropolis’s offensive snaps, in line with NextGen Stats. That’s by far the very best price within the league — groups in opposition to Buffalo used that grouping solely 57 % of the time. The Chargers used variations of that technique within the first half, restricted Mahomes to 112 yards, and Los Angeles led, 14-10.
Issues modified within the third quarter, although, when the Chargers’ versatile security Derwin James aggravated a hamstring harm and didn’t re-enter the sport. An offensive teammate, tight finish Donald Parham, additionally sustained a grotesque harm after dropping a fourth-down move in the long run zone within the first quarter. As he landed, his head hit the bottom and his physique stiffened. Officers paused the sport for about quarter-hour whereas they put him on a stretcher, and he underwent assessments at a hospital. Officers stated he was in secure situation.
“Any time that you just see that reside and also you’re near it, it impacts you,” Staley stated of continuous to teach whereas managing his feelings after the harm. “On the identical time, we’re making an attempt to play for him the remainder of the way in which. That’s what our guys did tonight, they laid it on the road and performed a whale of a sport for him. I hope that he’s happy with that.”
Two performs specifically doomed Los Angeles — a 32-yard scramble by Mahomes within the fourth quarter and a 69-yard catch-and-run by Kelce within the fourth. These moments straight led to touchdowns, the fourth-quarter scramble establishing a 7-yard landing toss to Kelce to tie the rating at 28-28. Kelce completed with 191 yards and two touchdowns, a rebound after not scoring a landing in his earlier 4 video games.
Mahomes, who threw for 410 yards, related on a 40-yard move to Hill within the third quarter, however misfired on a possible landing to Mecole Hardman. However he later discovered Hill, who completed with 148 receiving yards, on a 1-yard landing.