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Los Angeles Chargers vs. Kansas City Chiefs Preview and Predictions 12-29-2019

The Kansas City Chiefs can't control their playoff seeding situation - they need the Miami Dolphins to provide some unlikely help in that area - but will try to do their part when they host the division rival Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday. The Chiefs have clinched their fourth straight AFC West title and can still get the No. 2 seed and a first-round bye with a win and a New England loss at home against Miami.

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The Chiefs are seemingly peaking at the right time, having won five straight - including three by 20 points or more and a 23-16 victory at New England - and hope to keep the positive momentum rolling as they enter the playoffs. The hot streak began with a 24-17 win over the Chargers in Mexico City in Week 11 - Kansas City's 10th win in the past 11 meetings. The Chargers are relegated to the role of spoiler after a 24-17 loss to Oakland last week sent them to their second consecutive defeat and fifth in six games. Nine of Los Angeles' 10 losses have come by seven points or fewer.

TV: 1 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Kansas City -9 O/U: 44.5

ABOUT THE CHARGERS (5-10): Los Angeles has had a tough time getting the ground game going for most of the season and has held to a season-low 19 rushing yards last week against the Raiders. The passing game can still be effective and Philip Rivers passed for a season-high 353 yards in the first meeting with the Chiefs - one of few quarterbacks who has been able to pick apart Kansas City's much-improved secondary, although he threw a season-high four interceptions. The Chargers' defense is tough against the pass, which makes it a good matchup against a Chiefs' offense that leans heavily on the pass.

ABOUT THE CHIEFS (11-4): Kansas City plans to play to win, but if the Patriots get out to a big early lead, don't be surprised to see some of the Chiefs' stars on the bench saving themselves for a wild-card game next week. That would include reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes, as well as favorite targets Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. It also applies to some of the stars of the Chiefs' defense, which has held three straight opponents to fewer than 280 total yards and has allowed more than 400 only once in the past nine games after doing so in four of the first six games of the season.

EXTRA POINTS

1. Mahomes needs 143 passing yards to join Trent Green as the only players in franchise history with back-to-back 4,000-yard passing seasons.

2. Chargers RB Austin Ekeler has scored a touchdown in eight straight regular-season road games.

3. Kansas City DT Chris Jones has a sack in three of his past four contests.

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Stadium

Arrowhead Stadium
Kansas City, Missouri, USA.
Capacity: 76,416

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Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs

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Last Injuries

Kansas City Chiefs

  • Darrel Williams

    Ankle
    day-to-day | questionable

    Williams exited Sunday's game with an ankle injury, and it is unknown if he will return.

  • Sammy Watkins

    Head
    day-to-day | questionable

    Watkins left Sunday's game due to a head injury, and it is uncertain if he will return.

  • Khalen Saunders

    Elbow
    Out indefinitely | I-R

    Saunders has been assigned to the injured reserve list with a dislocated elbow, and he will miss an extended period.

  • Charvarius Ward

    Hand
    Out Sun | out

    Ward departed the previous game with a fractured left hand, and he will not play against the Chargers on Sunday.

  • Antonio Hamilton

    Groin
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Hamilton left Sunday's game with a groin injury, and it is unclear if he will return.

  • Frank Clark

    Illness
    day-to-day | questionable

    Clark was lifted from Sunday's game due to an illness, and it is undetermined if he will return.

  • Alex Okafor

    Hamstring
    Out Sun | out

    Okafor was forced from the last game due to a minor hamstring strain, and he will not suit up Sunday versus the Chargers.

  • Austin Reiter

    Knee
    Prob Sun | probable

    Reiter is dealing with a sore knee, but he is likely to partake in Sunday's clash versus the Chargers.

Los Angeles Chargers

  • Donald Parham Jr.

    Illness
    Out Sun | out

    Parham Jr. is ailing from an illness, and he will not be healthy enough to participate in Sunday's tilt versus the Chiefs.

  • Tyrod Taylor

    Chest
    Out Sun | out

    Taylor has a chest injury, and it will impede his status for Sunday's game versus the Chiefs.

  • Rayshawn Jenkins

    Groin
    day-to-day | questionable

    Jenkins left Sunday's game due to a groin injury, and his return is in question.

  • Justin Jones

    Shoulder
    day-to-day | questionable

    Jones was removed from Sunday's game due to a shoulder injury, and it is uncertain if he will come back.

  • Drue Tranquill

    Knee
    Out indefinitely | I-R

    Tranquill is expected to miss a substantial length of time while on the injured reserve list due to a broken knee.

  • Mike Pouncey

    Hip
    I-R | I-R

    Pouncey has been sent to the injured reserve list due to hip surgery.

  • Bryan Bulaga

    Knee
    day-to-day | questionable

    Bulaga exited Sunday's game with a knee injury, and it is unclear if he will return..

  • Melvin Ingram III

    Leg
    day-to-day | questionable

    Ingram III departed Sunday's game due to a leg injury, and his return is in question.