In a battle between two AFC West foes, the Los Angeles Chargers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 30-24 in Week 3. The Chiefs were marred with turnover problems — four in total— resulting in several scoring opportunities for Los Angeles.
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Justin Herbert continued to prove why he’s one of the NFL’s rising young stars in today’s game. He earned a grade of 87.6 on PFF’s first review of the game film, the result of a 26-for-38 passing performance. He threw for 281 yards and four touchdowns.
While his stats might not have been gaudy, Austin Ekeler’s rushing performance Sunday paired well with Herbert’s excellent air attack. Ekeler gained 55 yards on 11 carries — an average of five yards per carry. The star back earned a grade of 64.0 on first review. He gained almost 72% of the team’s rushing yardage.
Ekeler also caught six passes for 52 yards and a touchdown. In total, the back was responsible for 107 of the team's 352 total yards — almost a third.
Wide Receiver/Tight End
Receiver Mike Williams led the team in receiving yards with 122. He also found the end zone on two of his seven receptions.
Herbert’s most targeted receiver, Keenan Allen, caught eight of his 12 targets for 50 yards and the quarterback’s fourth touchdown of the day. Upon first review, Allen earned a grade of 77.6.
Three of the five starters on the offensive line will likely finish with grades over 80.0. Rashawn Slater, who graded at 80.5; Matt Feiler, who graded at 80.2, and Corey Linsley at 85.8, all contributed to a game where Herbert was only sacked once. In total, the five-man unit only allowed nine total pressures.
After a wild week of “will he, won't he?” surrounding whether Joey Bosa‘s playing status, the star end took the field. He had an injury scare in the first half, but he finished the game fine, accounting for three tackles and a sack.
Kenneth Murray only played 31% of the defensive snaps, but he still managed an overall grade north of 60.0. Kyzir White scored way below average with an overall grade of 28.9, but he made up for it by earning a pass-rushing grade of 73.8.
Cornerback Michael Davis was the biggest star for the Chargers’ defense today. The BYU product recovered both Kansas City fumbles. Behind him, rookie Asante Samuel Jr. made a huge early-game impact after making a wild, leaping interception.
— Los Angeles Chargers (@chargers) September 26, 2021
Safety Alohi Gilman also came up with a Mahomes interception. In total, these three members of the Chargers' secondary were responsible for all four turnovers and 12 total tackles. Nasir Adderley added to the defensive beatdown with nine tackles of his own.
Patrick Mahomes is arguably the top quarterback in the league for a reason. On the way to a PFF grade above 65.0, he completed 27 of his 44 passes for three touchdowns and 260 yards. Unfortunately for the Chiefs’ superstar, he tossed two interceptions, contributing to Kansas City’s bigger turnover problems. On the ground, Mahomes rushed for 45 yards on four scrambles.
Leading the way for Kansas City’s rushing attack was the second-year Clyde Edwards-Helaire. An average of 5.9 yards per carry on 17 rushes led to 100 yards. He also caught two of Mahomes’ passes for nine yards— one of which was a touchdown. A fumble by the LSU product was one of two recovered by the Chargers.
To add to the above-average stat line, Edwards-Helaire forced six missed tackles and gained five first downs for the team.
Wide Receiver/Tight End
Tyreek Hill, who lost the second of the fumbles, and Travis Kelce did Chiefs receivers things, bagging 160 receiving yards between them, but Mecole Hardman and Joe Fortson were the two pass-catchers who found the end zone.
After allowing just a single sack on the day, the Chiefs' offensive line had two members, Creed Humphrey and Joe Thuney, score above an 80.0 in pass protection. The run-blocking was just as good, as three linemen scored at or above a 68.0.
Mike Danna, q second-year Michigan product, was the only Chief to sack Herbert Sunday. In addition to the take-down, he also managed another tackle. Besides Danna, Chris Jones was the only defensive lineman to make monumental waves. Jones racked up four hurry-ups and a tackle for a loss.
This didn't translate on pass coverage, however. Both of these players also graded under 70.0 in coverage, which resulted in 41 yards allowed by the combined twosome.
Daniel Sorensen made a total of six tackles on the day, five of which were solo. He also broke up a pass. Tyrann Mathieu looked solid as always — the safety made five tackles and earned an overall defensive grade of 67.8.