1. There has been a lot of talk about Jamaal Charles having a reduced workload especially early in the season. This would suggest that Spencer Ware is in line for a bigger role. Just how big of a role can we expect and does he have a chance to be the goal line back?
Yes and yes. The Chiefs will use both Ware and Charcandrick West but if training camp and preseason is any indication then Ware will be the lead back. Ware got the goal line carries in the preseason and he makes sense in that role because he is a battering ram. With the Chargers run defense in recent years, the Chiefs game plan should include plenty of Spencer Ware.
2. With Justin Houston out, what's to stop the Chargers from just running at Dee Ford all day?
Damn it, the secret is out! You're right, though. There isn't much there in Ford's run defense. The Chiefs defense knows that is an issue so they should be prepared for that. The defensive line can get a little added penetration to help and I have to think Bob Sutton has a plan for this. It's not like the world doesn't know his run defense issues. Ford has to prove he can do it or else if I'm the Chargers I do exactly that. The Chargers also need a back who can exploit that. Can Melvin Gordon do that?
3. The Chiefs look like they are the best team in the AFC West. How confident are you that they'll take home the division crown?
I do feel the Chiefs are the most balanced team but the Broncos defense looked legit again on Thursday night. Trevor Siemian isn't good Peyton Manning but he didn't crap the bed like I thought he would. The Raiders have a few really good young pieces that could grow up quickly. So, yeah, I'm not confident. I'm still picking them but if you told me in January that the Broncos or Raiders won the division, I could believe it.
4. Travis Kelce always seems like he's primed for a huge break out season. Is this the year he rivals Gronkowski?
I don't think he'll ever be on Gronk's level and that's more of a nod to Gronk than it is a shot at Kelce. Gronk's just on another level physically. What separates Gronk is the touchdowns. Kelce has 10 touchdowns in the past two years; Gronk has 23 (not including the playoffs).
Kelce though is primed for another solid season. He's been pretty dang consistent over two seasons so I'd expect another 70 catches and 800-something yards. Fantasy hint: I also really like him against the Chargers. With the Chargers good corners locking down Jeremy Maclin, selling out to stop the run and no Eric Weddle ... I like Kelce on Sunday.
5. The Chiefs are favorites at home for a reason. If you had to make a case for the Chargers to win this weekend, how would that go?
Here's a secret: the Chiefs defense won't be great early on this year. I do believe the Chiefs will win but the line seems a little high for an offense that fling it. Keenan Allen and Travis Benjamin didn't play last year when the Chiefs held the Chargers to six points in two games. Ya think that'll be different this time around? Yeah, I do, too. One of the Chiefs question marks is the secondary where they are very young. Rivers can exploit that. If the Chargers win, it's because they put up 30-plus points.