Chargers hold Chiefs without a first down in first half


As expected, the Chargers are leading the Chiefs at halftime in San Diego.

The way they’re doing it isn’t quite what we expected, however. They’ve mustered just 10 points against a Chiefs team that has allowed 89 points through the first two weeks of the season. Phillip Rivers has been intercepted twice and fumbled once (the Chargers recovered) in an out of sync performance by the San Diego offense.

On defense, however, the Chargers look just fine. They didn’t give up a single first down to the Chiefs offense and allowed just 33 yards overall in the first two quarters. Matt Cassel has completed six-of-seven passes, but they’ve gone for just 18 yards and saying Kansas City has missed Jamaal Charles is one of the bigger understatements you’ll ever encounter. Figuring out where the Chiefs are going to get points is no easy task, unless Rivers decides to serve up a pick-six at some point in the second half.

The defense has done a splendid job thus far, but it could get more difficult in the second half. Cornerback Brandon Flowers, who had one of the interceptions, is questionable to return after a knee injury and the team has also seen defensive backs Jon McGraw and Travis Daniels leave the game because of injuries.

The Chargers offense did get a strong first half from Ryan Mathews. The 2010 first-round pick has been in the game in all packages and has 94 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown. Mike Tolbert has been ailing this week, so the Mathews workload may not be a sign of a change in philosophy when it comes to the running back rotation.