Chargers catch a break: Chiefs deactivate their top players

AP

The San Diego Chargers just caught a huge break.

Faced with a must-win game against the Chiefs today, the Chargers found out that the Chiefs (who are locked into the No. 5 seed in the AFC) decided to rest their top players. The Chiefs have officially announced that quarterback Alex Smith, running back Jamaal Charles, receiver Dwayne Bowe, linebacker Tamba Hali, linebacker Derrick Johnson, offensive tackle Branden Albert and defensive tackle Dontari Poe are all inactive today.

The Chargers will go to the playoffs if they beat the Chiefs, and the Ravens and Dolphins both lose. The Ravens are currently tied with the Bengals, while the Dolphins trail the Jets. The Chargers can still be eliminated before kickoff, in which case the Chargers-Chiefs game would be meaningless for both teams. But at the moment the game is still very meaningful for the Chargers, and the Chiefs have just done San Diego a favor.