When he became the starting quarterback two years ago, Justin Herbert drastically changed the face of the rivalry between the Los Angeles Chargers and the Kansas City Chiefs with duels against Patrick Mahomes that are guaranteed to be a spectacle.
The Chiefs had beaten the Chargers in 11 of 12 games from 2014 to 2019, but when Herbert had to start because of an unexpected injury to Tyrod Taylor in Week 2 before a game against Kansas City, both teams have split victories. in their four matches, all of them away, a fact that puts the Chiefs on alert, who debut this Thursday night at home in 2022.
It will be the fourth meeting between Herbert and Mahomes. It should be remembered that in the last week of the 2020 campaign, the Chargers won Kansas City in a game in which the Chiefs were already qualified for the Playoffs and used substitutes.
In the first three matchups between these quarterbacks, the team that has won has done so with a touchdown in overtime or in the last minute of regulation.
This is not surprising considering that Herbert and Mahomes are two of the most productive quarterbacks in the NFL in the fourth quarter or overtime in the last two years.
Herbert is fourth in the league with six comebacks and sixth with 18 touchdown passes in those stretches, while Mahomes is third and second in those categories, respectively, with seven returns and 23 touchdown passes.
The margin of victory in the three meetings between Herbert and Mahomes is five points and two of them ended with wins for the Chiefs in overtime, the most recent, in Week 15 of the 2021 season, with the 34 touchdown pass. yards from Mahomes to Travis Kelce in an action in which the tight end left behind several Chargers defenders after catching the ball to head for the end zone.
In an AFC West in which any oversight can have negative implications for whoever commits it at the end of the season, the Chargers and Chiefs are called upon to strike early and Herbert and Mahomes, as they have shown on three occasions, are certainly ready for the challenge.
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Justin Herbert brings balance to Chargers-Chiefs rivalry