The Kansas City Chiefs lost their two best pass rushers and arguably their two most important defenders yesterday against the San Diego Chargers. Tamba Hali went down with an ankle injury and Justin Houston hurt his elbow, neither player was able to return to the field in the Chiefs loss. Hali received an MRI today and got good news, it is a mild ankle sprain rather than the dreaded high ankle sprain. Some people even speculated if the injury was an achilles injury which would have been much worse. Houston wasn't able to get an MRI today because the elbow was too swollen, but he was seen today wearing a sling. He will receive an MRI either tomorrow or Wednesday.
The Chiefs defense was completely out of whack when Hali and Houston left the game. They could not stop the Chargers offense losing in a shootout 41-38. The Chiefs defense has been one of the best in the NFL so far this year and one of the most opportunistic, but when Hali and Houston left there was absolutely no pass rush leaving the Chiefs secondary out to dry and giving Rivers all day to throw the ball. Houston and Hali lead the NFL in combined sacks for linebackers with 20.
The Chiefs seem more optimistic about Hali's injury than Houston's. Andy Reid had a press conference today and said Hali was day to day and that Hali was feeling better today. It is unknown whether he will play or not this week, but at this time I would say it is more likely than Houston.
This game is very important for the Chiefs, they host the 9-2 Broncos and the winner of this game will be in first place in the AFC West. The loser of the AFC West will most likely get the 5 seed rather than home field advantage throughout so the Chiefs must play better defense against the Broncos than they did against the Chargers. If the Chiefs can get at least one of these guys back for the game this week that would be a big upgrade. The Chiefs will likely update the situation of the two players later this week.