“I’m surrounded by Sooners,” said King, who played collegiately at Oklahoma. “(Long snapper) James (Winchester) texted me yesterday and offered up a bedroom in his house for me to stay in. I talked to (offensive lineman) Donald (Stephenson) and (cornerback) Jamell (Fleming).”
The only problem is that I feel like I have seen this story before. Higher preseason expectations, followed by an underperforming start to the year, and then leading into an incredible mid-season resurgence and winning streak. If that sounds really familiar it is because it was how the Chiefs started the first nine games of last season too. Only instead of having a five game losing streak to make up, they were four games into a five game winning streak after Week 10. And then the wheels fell off and they dropped four of their last seven games.
“We have guys who have been around a while who know how long a season is and now things can turn around, how injuries can affect teams,” Hali said. “You just have to keep grinding, keep playing and knowing that things can change. But don’t wait for it. You have to make it happen and find ways to make it happen.”
Johnson, 32, explained that his mother, Beverly Johnson of Waco, Texas, is a sixth-grade math teacher with more than 40 years experience. “I grew up in a home where education is very important,” said Johnson, who attended the University of Texas as an education major. “I wanted to do something that had an emphasis on education,” he said. “Education is the key.”
But Davis admits not dressing against the Broncos caught him by surprise. “Definitely,” Davis said. “I asked why, they just told me they wanted to try (defensive back Saalim) Hakim. They didn’t tell me I did anything wrong, but it was just kind of a business move.”
The NFL fined Ward $10,000 for throwing at punch at Kansas City receiver Jeremy Maclin. Ward said Maclin took a cheap shot at him, and he took offense to a block late in Charcandrick West's 80-yard touchdown catch and run. Officials flagged Ward for the punch, ejecting him. Ward has been fined $33,150 the past two weeks for hitting a defenseless player, wearing an untucked jersey and punching Maclin.
13. Kansas City Chiefs: Despite his relative inexperience, the Chiefs like Chase Daniel enough to pay him nearly $4 million this season. Aaron Murray remains an intriguing prospect.
The Chiefs are nine games into this season and are without a special teams touchdown. Combined with two games without one at the end of last season, that’s 11 straight, which is a drought for teams coached by Toub.
The Kansas City Chiefs are 10th in the NFL in scoring at slightly less than 25 points per game, but here’s a stat that shows just how much their offense has benefited from favorable field position: The average length of Chiefs touchdown is 58.8 yards, third smallest in the NFL. The Chiefs are also near the bottom in the league, according to ESPN Stats and Info, in average length of a field goal drive (47 yards, 23rd in the NFL) and average length of any scoring drive (52.9 yards, 31st).
“We’ve had some great games over the years," Rivers said. “Even going way back there’s been a lot of great games that seem to come down to the wire. That’s kind of what you expect from a division game, but I do think there seems to be more of them (between) the Chiefs and Chargers as of late."
Offensive coordinator Doug Pederson even challenged Smith to take more chances during training camp, and insisted Thursday his veteran quarterback is taking calculated gambles. "You go back to the London game (against Detroit), some of the throws he made there, the touchdown pass to Jeremy Maclin down the middle of the field – the tight coverage," Pederson said. "Some of the things we're asking him to do, he's doing it. But he knows in his mind and we know in our mind he's just one of those quarterbacks that's going to protect the football."
The amazing thing about the Chargers offense is that despite having several key injuries since the beginning of the season, it is still fourth in the league in yards per game (413.9) entering Week 11. San Diego has lost right guard Johnnie Troutman, running back Branden Oliver, wide receiver Keenan Allen and center Chris Watt to Injured Reserve. Allen, in the midst of a breakout year, still currently stands as the team leader in targets, receptions, yards receiving and touchdowns receiving (tie – TE Ladarius Green). NFL veteran receiver Malcom Floyd, who was expected to step up in the absence of Allen, tore his labrum (shoulder) in San Diego’s last game against the Chicago Bears. Floyd had been playing in what he was regarding as his final season in the league. Floyd has said that he’d like to play through the shoulder injury, but he did not practice for the Chargers Wednesday.
“We’ve been around each other for a long time and we practice hard, we communicate, we go out to eat together, we play video games together, we just lean on each other and trust each other,” said Berry. “We’ve got a great feel for each other. Like I know what Ron (Parker) is going to do when he’s out there. I know what Sean (Smith) is going to do. I know what Husain (Abdullah) is going to do. They feel the same way about me. Those reps and that chemistry is very big when it comes to being on the field.”