The Chiefs pulled off a mammoth comeback last season when they started the year 1-5 before winning 11 straight games and advancing to the divisional round of the playoffs.
They pulled off another big one to open the 2016 season. The Chiefs were awful for most of the first three quarters of the game and spotted the Chargers a 24-3 lead at Arrowhead Stadium before finally coming to life. They put together four scoring drives on their last five possessions of regulation to tie the game 27-27 and then drove right down the field behind Spencer Ware and Travis Kelce to start overtime.
Alex Smith got the ball in from two yards out for a 33-27 overtime win that was doubly painful for the Chargers. They saw wide receiver Keenan Allen carted off because of a knee injury in the first half and initial reports are that he has suffered a torn ACL. The Chargers were up 21-3 when Allen got hurt and the game certainly changed for them offensively at that point.
While Melvin Gordon and Danny Woodhead still found some success on the ground, Philip Rivers couldn’t keep the team churning through the air and the Chargers sputtered to just 45 yards on their final four possessions of the game. It’s the second time that the Chargers have blown a lead of at least 21 points in a season opener under coach Mike McCoy and the third time overall. Those aren’t great stats for a coach who was already under some pressure heading into the season.
Andy Reid won’t be feeling the same heat this week. Smith couldn’t move the team early, but wound up 34-of-46 for 363 yards and two touchdowns. Ware had 129 receiving yards to go with 70 rushing yards, Kelce put the Chiefs inside the 10 in overtime with a catch over linebacker Kyle Emmanuel down the sideline and the offensive line improved after struggling to protect early in the game.
All of that adds up to the biggest comeback win in franchise history and a loss that feels like pretty brutal for the Chargers even though they have 15 more games to find better results.