Kansas City Chiefs survive L.A. Chargers in overtime for tough road win

The Chiefs survived a tough challenge from the Chargers to earn their second win.

The Kansas City Chiefs somehow survived self-inflicted mistakes, sloppy play, a number of injuries, and a very tough performance from the L.A. Chargers to come away with their first road win of the 2020 season.

Harrison Butker made two incredible field goals from 58 yards out in the game, including one in overtime, to put away the Chargers by a final of 23-20. The Chiefs Pro Bowl kicker was undoubtedly the hero of the game for his ability to save a stalled drive early in the game at an important moment and then, of course, to connect from such a long distance in overtime despite a false start penalty and a last-second ice-the-kicker timeout by L.A.

The Chargers surprised the Chiefs from the outset by debuting rookie quarterback Justin Herbert as their starter as Tyrod Taylor suffered from a rib injury. The move was unexpected, but the Chargers clearly knew what they were doing all along given that third-string quarterback Easton Stick was also dressed and ready to play.

From the entire first half, Herbert looked like the savvy vet and led the Chargers on two scoring drives. On the first, Herbert ran in the first touchdown of the game with a nice four-year rush into the corner of the end zone. On the second, Herbert found Jalon Guyton on a 14-yard strike for his first career touchdown pass to put the Bolts up 14-6. Herbert would finish the first half 13 completions on 20 attempts for 193 yards.

As for the Chiefs, the first half was a miserable experience. Not only did the team see several more defenders leave due to injury—including cornerback Antonio Hamilton and linebackers Anthony Hitchens and Damien Wilson—but even their MVP put up one of the single worst halves of football in his short NFL career. Mahomes finished the first 30 minutes of play with 8 completions of 19 attempts for 60 yards. Fortunately he did find Travis Kelce for a 10-yard touchdown to keep the Chiefs within a single possession.

Into the second half, the Chargers maintained the momentum by stopping the Chiefs offense out of halftime. Both teams traded field goals on long-but-ultimately-stalled drives. Fortunately for K.C., they were helped by Herbert’s rookie mistake throwing into coverage as the Chargers were driving once again, and fellow rookie L’Jarius Sneed came up with the interception, giving the Chiefs the ball back deep in their own territory at the close of the third quarter.

On the ensuing drive, the Chiefs lost Sammy Watkins to a hit to the helmet but maintained momentum long enough for Mahomes to find a streaking Tyreek Hill nearly 60 yards downfield. The Chargers came out in the fourth with a punishing, long drive that ate up several minutes but they failed to reach the end zone and settled for a field goal. The Chiefs had a chance to win the game on the last drive of regulation but settled for a 30-yard field goal after numerous penalties ruined several big gains.

From there, the Chargers won the coin toss in overtime but went 3-and-out, a weird drive that included the very questionable decision of punting the ball with only one yard to go for the first down. The Chiefs drove the field and set up Butker for the game-winning field goal. Despite some last minute hiccups, Butker delivered and gave the Chiefs their second win of the year.

Next: Why NFL teams should be terrified of the Chiefs