With the AFC West race coming down to the wire almost every season, the San Diego Chargers have to win 10 key games to reserve their place in the playoffs.
Obviously, it's important that the Chargers try and get a "W" against every one of their AFC opponents, but that's a challenge in itself to accomplish. Just winning every AFC West matchup is going to be difficult.
I won't sit here and tell you that I think San Diego is going to win every single one of these games because this isn't a piece on predictions. Instead, these are 10 of the most important games on the schedule that will only make the playoffs even more of a reality in 2012.
To put it quite simply, the Chargers will have to win 10 of their 12 games against AFC opponents to make themselves a unanimous favorite to make it to the playoffs. Winning within the conference is going to be the most efficient route to the playoffs, and dominating within the AFC West would be the icing on the cake.
Here are 10 games the Chargers have to win to make it to the playoffs.