Stats show the Chiefs are living off turnovers, solid kicking game

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Chiefs are 10th in the NFL in scoring at slightly less than 25 points per game, but here’s a stat that shows just how much their offense has benefited from favorable field position: The average length of Chiefs touchdown is 58.8 yards, third smallest in the NFL.

The Chiefs are also near the bottom in the league, according to ESPN Stats and Info, in average length of a field goal drive (47 yards, 23rd in the NFL) and average length of any scoring drive (52.9 yards, 31st).

This suggests the Chiefs are making their living off favorable field position and to extend their winning streak to four games on Sunday against the Chargers in San Diego, they will again need to rely on turnovers and a tremendous kicking game. The Chiefs haven’t committed a turnover in their last three games while forcing 10. Meanwhile, all seven of Cairo Santos' kickoffs went for touchbacks last week in the thin air of Denver and Dustin Colquitt quietly had a great game, dropping four of his five punts inside the 20.

Failing yet another lopsided turnover differential or a big win in the kicking game, the Chiefs can also improve on offense. The Chiefs have attempted 26 field goals this year, tied for second in the league, and made 21.

The Chiefs scored two touchdowns in Denver, one coming on an explosive play, an 80-yard pass after the Broncos forgot to cover Charcandrick West. The other, after a Marcus Peters interception, came after a 31-yard drive.

The latter drive is more typical of how the Chiefs have scored their touchdowns this year. They’ve also had a lot of drives stall, which is why the Chiefs believe they can squeeze more from their offense.

“I still feel like we’ve left a lot [of points] out there,’’ quarterback Alex Smith said. “[There’s] a lot of room for improvement.”

Or maybe the Chiefs are who they are offensively and their frequent inability to finish drives with touchdowns is in their DNA. In that case, they’d better create a few turnovers on Sunday in San Diego and beyond.