As Reid’s Chiefs have emerged as the Colossus of the AFC West, going 27-3 in the division since the end of the 2014 season, they’ve won nine of 10 against the Chargers in that span and 11 of the last 12 overall.
They’ve beaten the Chargers in four stadiums, at Arrowhead and Qualcomm and the StubHub Center (primarily a soccer stadium now known as Dignity Health Sports Park) and Estadio Azteca in Mexico City.
3. Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City Chiefs, est. 1972
Atmosphere: 5 • Features: 6
Traditions: 5 • Tailgating: 1
Location: 21 • Cost: 11
What’s good about it: Tailgating. The Truman Sports Complex is home to both the NFL’s Chiefs and MLB’s Royals, and while there may not be much around other than freeways, the expanse of the combined lots leaves plenty of room for tailgating. The smell of BBQ from the parking lot in hot weather or cold will stick with you. With stomachs full, Chiefs fans have always been a raucous group and, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, they achieved the loudest crowd roar in a sports stadium with a measurement of 142.2 decibels during a game against the Patriots in 2014.
3 - Patrick Mahomes
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS QB
It’s not that Pat was bad in his opener; too many others were simply that good. Had Demarcus Robinson held on to some of his money throws, in fact, Mahomes might be leading the NFL in TD throws. (And he probably still will.) If you’re going purely off arm acrobatics, he’s still the clear No. 1.
Last week: 1
Kansas City Chiefs at Los Angeles Chargers (+8.5)
This one will be fun to watch when it’s the Chiefs offense against that Chargers defense. Both are top-tier. The Chargers did a good job on Patrick Mahomes last year and I think they can in this game as well. The Chargers will hang around because of their defense. It’s close.
Pick: Chiefs 23, Chargers 20
Easiest pick of the week: Kansas City vs. Los Angeles Chargers
Let’s face it, unless you’re an elite NFL team it’s going to be damn near impossible to beat Kansas City. This is a rebuilding year for the Charges, while the Chiefs are seemingly unstoppable. This doesn’t mean Los Angeles is bad, in fact they were decidedly okay in Week One, but that was against the Bengals — this is the Super Bowl champs. Lock this one in and don’t look back.
Among the other first-year headliners are former Packers and Raiders standout defensive back Charles Woodson, a Super Bowl winner and nine-time Pro Bowler, and Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson, a six-time Pro Bowl selection. One of the most prolific sack artists of all-time, Jared Allen, one of the most valuable contributors to the Patriots dynasty, guard Logan Mankins, and the innovator of the “Peanut Punch,” cornerback Charles Tillman, are also now eligible.
Hunter Henry at Chiefs
Henry had a solid opener for fantasy fans, hauling in five of his eight targets for 73 yards in a win over the Bengals. He ranked second among Chargers receivers in snaps behind Keenan Allen as well, and his eight targets also tied Allen for second. He should be in your starting lineups against the Chiefs, as Henry scored 14-plus fantasy points in both of their 2019 matchups. Game script could also dictate the Chargers (+8.5) are throwing a ton.
Around the NFL
Barber, a three-time Pro Bowler who spent 10 years as the Giants’ RB, may sound harsh. But the criticisms aren’t new. Former Jacksonville Jaguars RB Maurice Jones-Drew called Barkley’s pass blocking ”horrible” over the summer, and some indicated during training camp that the Giants’ offseason addition of Dion Lewis was partially motivated by a need to replace Barkley on third downs with a better blocker.
“Saquon Barkley is a big man who doesn’t want to hit anybody,” Barber continued. “It’s frustrating to watch. He’s a great back, but he’s frustrating to watch trying to pass protect.”
“Tom and I are fine. I don’t really care what other people think. So it’s just what he and I think,” Arians said Wednesday with a chuckle. “We left the stadium fine. We showed up today fine. There ain’t nothin’ to talk about.”
On Tuesday, Pro Football Hall of Famer Brett Favre said on his radio show, “The SiriusXM Blitz” with Bruce Murray, that unless the coach and quarterback have an understanding, calling out Brady publicly can lead to tension down the road.
“Getting to Bruce Arians’ comments, true or not, I think the last person you want to call out after the first game of the year is Tom Brady,” Favre said Tuesday. “Now, maybe they had a mutual truce going into the game, going into the season, ‘Hey, I’m going to be hard on you. I want the guys to know we’re going to treat you the same even though technically I’m not, so are you OK with it?’ If they have that truce, great. If not, I think you are barking up the wrong tree.”
“Everyone associated with the Big Ten should be very proud of the groundbreaking steps that are now being taken to better protect the health and safety of the student-athletes and surrounding communities,” said Dr. Jim Borchers, who co-chaired the medical subcommittee of the Big Ten’s Return to Competition Task Force. The earliest a positive-testing player could return to game competition is 21 days after a diagnosis.
In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride
The gunslinger label that Mahomes attracted as a draft prospect still describes his play as a thrower, but that label is usually associated with recklessness and over-aggression. Week 1 was further proof that Chiefs head coach Andy Reid has tamed Mahomes’ aggressive nature effectively.
“It was just more reading the feel of the game,” Mahomes recalled. “When the defense is doing a great job of getting stops... Instead of trying to force that deep shot, I used the guys underneath it to move the ball down the field and score. It’s going to be times here and there where I need to take the deep shot.”
Mahomes is continuing to learn and understand when to unleash the long throws. Part of that is going back in the game film and recognizing the plays where the deep shot was overlooked.
“There was a couple in the game that I missed,” Mahomes acknowledged. “The one to Tyreek [Hill] early in the game, we ended up getting the first down but maybe [there was] a chance to hit him on a big play. Then the one to Kelce down the sideline, where I threw the check down just a little too early. There was times where I could have taken that shot, I just got to know when and where to do it, and try not to miss whenever I get the opportunity.”