San Diego Chargers Survive and Advance

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

You can check the numbers, and check them again, but the San Diego Chargers are going to the playoffs as the AFC No. 6 seed. The Chargers became big winners during the early games as they saw the Baltimore Ravens and Miami Dolphins both lose. Those outcomes put the Chargers in the driver’s seat needing only a win to sneak into the postseason.

San Diego also received a presumed boost as their opponent, the Kansas City Chiefs, rested most of their starters giving the Chargers an apparent edge. However, that was not quite the case as it was the Chiefs who led most of the way on the road. Kansas City was already locked into the No. 5 seed, yet still put forth a great effort and pushed the Chargers to the brink.

The Chargers have become one of those teams that make you want to pull your hair out when watching them. Trailing by ten in the fourth quarter, the Chargers somehow found a way to tie the game and force overtime. A loss would have been just another example of the typical San Diego collapse the league has come to see in recent years. However, after a 16-play drive in overtime, Nick Novak kicked a go-ahead 36-yard field goal that proved to be the game winner. The win puts three teams from the AFC West advancing to the playoffs.

Give the Chargers credit, Philip Rivers had a vastly improved season, and it allowed San Diego to get back into the dance. When the other teams in contention continued to lose, it was the Chargers winning four games in a row to finish with a 9-7 record. That record came out to be just enough to get them into the Wild Card Round next week.

The Chargers will now take on the Cincinnati Bengals in a rematch that saw the Bengals winning in San Diego just a few weeks ago. Just how will the Chargers fare come playoff time is unknown, but they somehow got there, which is all you can ask for in the final week of the season.


Nick Schaeflein is a sports writer for Follow him on Twitter @ptchr2424 or add him to your network on Google.

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