1. Not a big fan of the non-12 p.m. start times. Sometimes I appreciate the extra time but not always. This is one of those days I wish this were a noon game.
2. A reason to hope for the Chiefs defense: The Chargers have the worst running game (statistically) in the NFL. They are one dimensional. That one dimension might be really, really good and led by the leader for the NFL MVP award but it's still just one dimension. Bob Sutton, with two weeks off, has to have a plan against Philip Rivers.
3. Speaking of Rivers, the Chiefs lost to the elite quarterbacks they faced last year (Peyton Manning, Philip Rivers, Andrew Luck). They beat Tom Brady once this year already. Beating Rivers would be a massive step in the right direction. Then later this season there's the granddaddy of ‘em all, Peyton Manning.
4. The Chiefs should handle this game like the Patriots. Run the ball to start. When you're unsure of what to do, run the ball. When it's third or fourth and short, run the ball. As you rack up the touchdowns, continue to run the ball. Not a bad idea, huh?
5. Eric Berry and Chris Owens are out. My theory on how the Chiefs will replace them involves a lot of Husain Abdullah. Move him to the nickel with Owens out. That will allow Ron Parker to remain at safety. Kurt Coleman is available as the third safety. I really like Abdullah playing man up on someone rather than Parker. Parker's best position has been safety.
6. If the Chiefs secondary has success today, Bob Sutton deserves major kudos. Down multiple starters against the NFL's best quarterback (right now)? This is a tall, tall task for the Chiefs defense.
7. Philip Rivers isn't running from the pocket but he can still be a slippery quarterback. In a perfect world, the Chiefs outside pass rushers of Tamba Hali and Justin Houston make Rivers step up in the pocket. When he does that Dontari Poe and Allen Bailey are hanging out in the middle.
8. The problem is, if you think Rivers is going to consistently hold the ball that long, you're crazy. As far as I'm concerned the book is still out on how to beat the Chiefs defense: get the ball out fast.
9. I hope Brandon Flowers does not play. He probably will but he's been playing so well that I don't care about the "revenge" factor. The Chiefs have a better shot at beating the Chargers if Flowers is not playing.
10. The Chiefs have lost six in a row in San Diego. I hate games in San Diego.
11. The Chargers head coach was encouraging Chargers fans to come to the game because he didn't want Chiefs fans to buy up those tickets. There will be plenty of Chiefs fans in the crowd. Any Chiefs fans in San Diego going to be there? Let us know in the comments.
12. I am picking the Chargers to win but this is going to be a tight game. Both of last year's Chiefs-Chargers game -- decided in the final minutes -- is evidence that the Chiefs can and should keep this game close.
13. Please, please Andy Reid do not make this another game where we're talking about (not) going for it on fourth and short. If the situation comes up, just go for it. I cringe every time I see a coach who isn't confident in his team picking up one yard, especially against an offense that can put up points like the Chargers.