The Kansas City Chiefs dropped their third straight game of the 2011 season to the San Diego Chargers, 20-17. Unlike the Chiefs first two games, which were blowouts, they actually had a chance in this game until QB Matt Cassel's interception in the fourth quarter sealed the deal.
Let's take a look at the good, bad and ugly....
The Chiefs second half. The Chiefs offense looked terrible in the first half gaining 33 total yards but came back in the second half showing signs of life and scored 17 points. Sure, it wasn't pretty all the time but they were getting the job done scoring two touchdowns and going on three total scoring drives. They made it interesting after a first half suggested it would be a blowout.
The Chiefs defense does it's part. QB Philip Rivers had a good day throwing the ball but the Chiefs forced two turnovers and came up with some key stops, especially the fourth down stop towards the end of the game. That was huge and it gave the Chiefs the ball with a shot to tie or win the game.
RB Dexter McCluster getting involved. Chiefs coach Todd Haley said earlier this week that he expected McCluster to get about 10-14 touches and he got 14 today -- nine rushes for 45 yards and five receptions for 15 yards. He's not someone you base your offense around but he was effective a couple times in, believe it or not, those second-and-long and third-and-long draw/delay plays. (The ones the fans hate.)
WR Steve Breaston makes an appearance. He hasn't been involved much this year but he had a huge 43-yard reception that put the Chiefs on the one-yard line and set up their final score. Great catch from Breaston.
WR Dwayne Bowe has a few key receptions. He wasn't used at all in the first but on the first possession of the second half he got a 23-yard pass from Cassel that brought the Chiefs inside the 10-yard line and then on the next play caught an impressive touchdown pass that had him dragging his feet. Only 67yards on the day but he had a pair of big third down conversions in the second half.
Leonard Pope gets three penalties. The first one, offensive holding, brought back what appeared to be a first down run by RB Thomas Jones on fourth down. The second one was offensive pass interference on a pass that was completed to WR Steve Breaston. The third was an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for taking off his helmet after a touchdown.
No points off turnovers. The Chiefs picked off Rivers in the first quarter and ended up missing a field goal. They picked him off again in the second quarter but ended up punting. No points off turnovers.
Thomas Jones barely eclipses two yards per carry. 14 carries on the day for just 31 yards. His longest run of the day was six yards.
Matt Cassel's day. He made up for it a little bit in the second half but this was the third straight game Cassel hasn't shown us much. He ended up going 17-of-24 for 176 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.
K Ryan Succop misses one, again. That's three misses on the season. Succop has regressed from year one to year two and now to year three.
The entire first half. 33 total yards. Four yards was the longest individual play and the Chiefs didn't have a single first down in the first half. It was one of the worst first half performances by an offense that wasn't plagued with turnovers.
CB Brandon Flowers' is injured. How bad? We're not sure but he left the game after a second quarter interception. Considering the injuries KC has seen this year, we're hoping it's nothing long-term.
QB Matt Cassel's interception. Yeah, he didn't see S Eric Weddle there but that pick ended the game. For the first time this season, we had legitimate hopes that the Chiefs could drive the ball down the field and tie, if not win the game. But that pick ended it. Ugh.
0-3. After winning the division last year, the Chiefs move to 0-3 on the season with the hardest part of their schedule yet to come.