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Chargers vs Chiefs: Final Game Grades for Kansas City

Farzin VousoughianContributor IIIDecember 21, 2014

Chargers vs Chiefs: Final Game Grades for Kansas City

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    The Kansas City Chiefs have yet to play with a lead this season and that was the case this afternoon against the San Diego Chargers. The Chiefs six turnovers hurt their chances immensely of winning. The Chargers took advantage of the six turnovers and took an early 27-6 lead at halftime and went on to win, 37-20.

Quarterback

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    Final grade for Matt Cassel: D

    First quarter: F

    • Cassel started the game nice with two completions to Bowe. He looked for Bowe again on the third play of the game and throws the ball straight to safety Eric Weddle. Cassel is not showing that he is capable of leading an NFL team and it has to make you wonder  if the coaching staff has Cassel on a short leash.

    Second quarter: F

    • To quote what Kevin Harlan said, “Cassel is having a nightmare first half.” Cassel’s struggles carried over to the second quarter. Cassel threw his second interception along with several close calls. Crennel has to continue to consider pulling Cassel at some point if this keeps up, because Cassel is not getting the job done for the Chiefs. His 32.2 quarterback rating is atrocious and hard to watch.

    Third quarter: C

    • Cassel has been quiet this quarter, even though he threw a touchdown pass to Charles. Cassel is looking to redeem himself in the fourth quarter with a two-score game.

    Fourth quarter: D

    • Cassel struggled all game long connecting with his receivers. His late-touchdown pass to Dwayne Bowe was far from helpful with the game already out of reach. Cassel finished with 251 passing yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions for a 60.7 quarterback rating.

Offense

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    Final grade: C-

    First quarter: F

    • The Chiefs offense is pretty bad. In four plays, they turned the ball over twice. The offense is not getting any opportunities to move the football. This start is nothing new for the Chiefs this season. With the way they are turning the football over makes it look like they don’t even want to keep the ball.

    Second quarter: F

    • The Chiefs offense made some strides when Jamaal Charles lifted the team with a nice touchdown run on a busted play. But Tony Moeaki gets called for a bad false start penalty and the Chiefs continue with their turnover woes, even while making, little, progress. The five turnovers for the Chiefs won’t help them going into the second half as they trail by 21.

    Third quarter: C

    • The Chiefs offense had their best quarter of the game. The much improved offense opened the second half with a touchdown pass to Charles to make it a two-score game. However, when the defense did them a favor by not allowing San Diego to move the ball, the Chief returned the favor by going three-and-out twice.

    Fourth quarter: C-

    • Kansas City's offense failed to take advantage of the opportunities their defense gave them. After the Chargers struggled to get a first down in the third quarter, the Chiefs offense only scored at the beginning of the second half. They committed their sixth turnover and could not do anything to reward their defense for trying to limit the Chargers in the second half.

Defense

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    Final grade: B

    First quarter: D

    • The defense should not be at fault for giving up 17 points as they have had to deal with defending a short field. But that is no excuse for the team being unable to play well. Justin Houston and Tamba Hali have added pressure on Rivers, but Eric Berry was flagged for two pass interference calls. The defensive backs have been burned thus far by the Chargers receivers.

    Second quarter: C-

    • The Chiefs defense stepped up. The big interception by Brandon Flowers slowed down the momentum the Chargers had going for them. The Chargers are only two of seven on third downs. The defense is trying to slow down Rivers, but with no help from the offense to compliment them, the defense might be forced to do more work in the second half.

    Third quarter: A-

    • The defense continued to get better this quarter. Rivers had little to work with and dealt with all kinds of trouble brought from the Chiefs defense. Ropati Pitoitua has filled in well for Glenn Dorsey today with a pair of sacks. Tamba Hali also got into the action with his first sack of the season. The Chiefs defense forced three three-and-out and allowed zero first downs this quarter.

    Fourth quarter: B

    • The defense got tired late in the second half after doing everything in their power to hold the Chargers. After the Chiefs offense could not put up anymore points, the Chargers defense finally got organized and came together in the fourth quarter with 10 points.

Special Teams

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    Final Grade: B

    First quarter: B

    • Ryan Succop had a nice kickoff deep in the end zone and Jalil Brown did a nice job of covering Dustin Colquitt’s punt inside the five.

    Second quarter: D

    • Long snapper Thomas Gafford had an awful snap to Colquitt on the extra point attempt. It was rare to see Gafford do so because his snaps since joining the Chiefs in 2008 have been fine.

    Third quarter: B

    • There was not much from special teams, other than punts from Colquitt to try and pin the Chargers deep in their own territory.

    Fourth quarter: B

    • There was not a lot of activity from the Chiefs on special teams. Their return game was not all that impressive. Colquitt was active with four punts as he tried to push the Chargers deep in their own territory. Succop, who made six field goals last week, made zero this week and was only called for kickoffs and PATs.

Coaching

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    Final grade: D

    First quarter: D

    • Romeo Crennel hoped to erase the rough start this afternoon, but there is not much going his way. His defense had a lot of holes on that first quarter while offensive coordinator Brian Daboll is having a hard time getting his offense to play as a unit.

    Second quarter: F

    • The Chiefs coaching staff did not prepare the Chiefs for this game and it is telling with a couple of statistics. Five giveaways, seven penalties, 140 total yards and only 11 minutes and 15 seconds of possession is what Kansas City is dealing with at home. The Chargers are doing everything they want to do in Arrowhead Stadium and Crennel can't seem to get his team to play together.

    Third quarter: D

    • The Chiefs coaching staff did a good job making the defense adjust in the second half. But it's the offense failing to move the ball after their first drive of the half. The Chiefs are still trailing and Crennel can only hope his defense can continue to work hard while the offense gets ready to play with their backs against the wall.

    Fourth quarter: D

    • It was nice to see Crennel not give up at the end, even when the team was down with no timeouts under a setting where the game was already over. But that does not accomplish anything nor does it do any damage control to how the game went. Crennel and Daboll need to do a better job of getting their offense ready next week against the Ravens.

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