The LA Chargers clinched a playoff spot in Week 16 with a win over the Indianapolis Colts. Brandon Staley's team continued its hot streak in Week 17 with a 31-10 win over the LA Rams. In the win, the Chargers secured the sixth seed at worst in the AFC.
This Week 17 game was originally scheduled to be played on Sunday Night Football but was flexed with the Chargers already clinching and the Rams not having anything to play for (other than Baker Mayfield's job next season). Taking its place is an AFC North battle between the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers.
While the Bolts may have gotten flexed out of primetime, Chargers fans still have plenty to root for during Sunday Night Football. For a brief 3-4 hours, Chargers fans should bust out any yellow towels they have around the house and become Steelers fans.
Why a Steelers win is huge for the LA Chargers:
The Baltimore Ravens were the fifth seed in the AFC heading into Week 17 with a one-game lead over the Chargers. However, the Bolts do own the tiebreaker over Baltimore, so they would secure the fifth seed in the case that the two teams finish with the same record.
If Baltimore (who will be playing without Lamar Jackson) loses this game then the Chargers would leapfrog them to become the fifth seed in the conference. This would give the team some much-needed cushion as Baltimore plays a much tougher opponent in Week 18 against the Cincinnati Bengals.
At some point, you have to play every team in the playoffs and the Chargers are not going to be able to nickel and dime their way to the Super Bowl. That being said, getting to play the winner of the AFC South (which would be the case as the fifth seed) in the Wild Card Round would be a great way to kickstart a playoff run.
It will be interesting to see how the NFL manages the Week 18 schedule if Baltimore does lose this game. If the Ravens play before the Chargers and lose in Week 18 as well, the Chargers would have the luxury of knowing the outcome and could rest all of the starters to avoid injury before the playoffs.
Regardless, Chargers fans got to see a fantastic, team win against the LA Rams and now it is time to root for the same for the Steelers.