We’ll have to excuse the Los Angeles Chargers if this week’s football matchup results in a bit of a letdown after their exciting and somewhat surreal finish against the first-place Steelers.
Cincinnati’s promising start has faded to memory in a whirlwind of injuries. The team will start a backup quarterback without his best wide receiver and tight ends. 4-0 has turned into 5-7 and put the Bengals behind the pack of legitimate wild-card contenders.
The Chargers sat their best running back last week, and still went toe-to-toe with the Steelers before taking advantage of three consecutive offside penalties on a game-ending field goal attempt to walk away with a three-point victory.
It wasn’t pretty, and certainly not the most assertive display of scoring prowess in NFL history, but Charger fans are wondering if the Steelers finally put to rest the Chargers’ long history of failure in the kicking game.
Mike Badgely missed a 39-yard field goal as time expired. The Steelers’ first offside call gave him an untimed second attempt from 34 yards. That was blocked by a Steelers, likely because they were offside again.
The ball was moved forward and Badgely lined up for a 29-yard attempt. The Steelers were so offside this time that Badgely kicked it after the potential blocker sailed past the ball. That penalty was declined. It was the type of thing that makes a team feel destined for good things. Will it propel the Chargers to the Super Bowl?
Injuries and notes
Jeff Driskel will start at quarterback again for the Bengals.
AJ Green reinjured his foot and was slated for season-ending surgery this week.
Left tackle Cordy Glenn (back) is listed as questionable for the Bengals.
Melvin Gordon is listed as questionable, although team sources say he could certainly play if needed. The team might not feel he is needed against the Bengals.
Speculation is running rampant in the Cincinnati area that Marvin Lewis might finally step aside after the season. He survived a purge of his staff after last year’s disappointing results. Truth be told, the team was in a slide even before Andy Dalton and AJ Green was lost. Jackson will leave without a playoff win in Cincinnati.
Lance Lynn isn’t going anywhere if Chargers fans have anything to say about it. The team is 15-4 since Week 5 of last season and have shown they can beat fellow playoff-bound teams. It helps that Phillip Rivers is having a career year, but winning games without Gordon and the players lost in the preseason is a credit to the coaching staff.
How to watch the Chargers-Bengals game
This game will be broadcast by CBS Sports to markets scattered across the country. Sling TV subscribers can watch it on their flat screen TVs, or enjoy the freedom that internet television provides by watching it from their computer or handheld internet device.
Sling TV, along with providers like DirecTV Now and Fubo TV, send dozens of local, sports, movies, and other entertainment networks to their monthly subscribers without any special equipment to buy and no contracts to sign.
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Check out their websites and see why internet TV is taking over the television industry.
Read More : NFL Week 15 Game Preview: Chargers at Chiefs
Who will win the Chargers-Bengals game?
Los Angeles faces the Chiefs, Ravens, and Broncos to finish this season, so there is always the feared “trap game” scenario lurking. But with the whole team talking about pulling even at the top of the AFC with a win next week, it is unlikely they will be tripped up at home by the Bengals.
Look for the inspired team to put on a show.