The offensive line was terrible for four quarters, and Philip Rivers was sacked repeatedly. Future Hall-of-Famer Antonio Gates didn't see a single target until halfway through the 3rd quarter.
Offensive coordinator Frank Reich continually dialed up five and seven-step drops while leaving his tackles one-on-one against arguably the best set of pass rushing outside linebackers in the NFL. Justin Houston set a new Chiefs franchise record for sacks in a season thanks in part to a hobbled D.J. Fluker.
With the season on the line on 3rd & goal from the 3, the Chargers dialed up a fade to their shortest wide receiver. That's the kind of play call you can expect to fail 95% of the time, so it's hard to get upset about the referees missing a blatant defensive pass interference call.
Chargers got killed by the referees there after spending the first 50 minutes getting killed by their own bad coaching/execution.— Bolts From The Blue (@BFTB_Chargers) December 28, 2014
John Pagano's defense was basically terrible between the 20s but stiffened in the red zone. This is typically enough to win, but when the opposing offense is starting Chase Daniel it's nothing to be proud of. Injuries to Marcus Gilchrist, Jahleel Addae, and Shareece Wright (for varying lengths of time) did little to help an already weakened secondary.
Somehow with 6:42 left on the clock, the Chargers started a drive down only two scores at midfield. Rivers, like he did last week in the 4th quarter, appeared fully in control of the offense and gave you a sense that they could still win. With the season on the line (again!), the Chargers handed the ball to (year-long-disappointment) Donald Brown twice on 3rd & 4th down. He was stoned both times and the season was over despite over three minutes left on the clock.
The defense managed to hold the Chiefs to a 3-and-out with the Chiefs not really trying to do anything other than run time off the clock and gave the ball back to the Chargers offense with 2:23 remaining. Given this borderline nonexistent sliver of a chance, Malcom Floyd caught a pass at the sideline but stayed in bounds to keep the clock running. Then Rivers was flagged for intentional grounding on the next play. A couple passes to Dontrelle Inman who flashed great hands kept the drive alive. Then the Chiefs got away with another DPI in the end zone. This was followed by a drive-killing sack and another deep incompletion. A Sean Smith interception looked to be the final nail in the coffin, but a meaningless penalty allowed for one last meaningless play.
Finally, the game and season mercifully ended.