Following Win Over Chiefs, Chargers Look to Make Another Late Playoff Push

The San Diego Chargers scratched their way back to .500 with a 31-13 win over the lowly Kansas City Chiefs Thursday night. The win leaves San Diego squarely in the AFC West race and head coach Norv Turner still with a job.

The Chargers (4-4) were desperate for a win following devastating losses to the Denver Broncos and Cleveland Browns the previous two weeks. San Diego was able to right the ship in Week Nine with a solid performance on both sides of the ball. Quarterback Phillip Rivers completed a high percentage of his passes while throwing just one interception, and the defense was able to put a collar on the Chiefs impotent offense while collecting four turnovers.

Prior to getting healthy against the last-place Chiefs Thursday, San Diego ranked near the bottom of the NFL in every major offensive statistical category, another dambing indictment on Turner when you consider his reputation as an offensive mastermind.

San Diego will have 10 days off before traveling to Tampa Bay to take on the 3-4 Buccaneers. The Bucs' have looked much-improved under first-year head coach Greg Schiano. They scored a sharp 36-17 win over the Minnesota Vikings last Sunday in which quarterback Josh Freeman threw three touchdowns to continue his resurgence after a slow start to the season.

The Bucs travel to play the Oakland Raiders in Week 9, where they are listed as 1-point underdogs in the NFL odds.

The Chargers have seemingly winnable games ahead on the schedule and may be poised for one of their patented late-season playoff runs, which has defined some of the Turner era. Or, perhaps, they simply continue the underachieving ways that have also identified the Chargers in recent years. Next week at Tampa Bay could be the game that makes or breaks the Chargers season. Stay tuned.

November 5, 2012

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