Josh Mauga doesn’t know how many more games he will start, but he’s playing every game like it’s his last.
With Joe Mays eligible to return from a wrist injury he suffered during the preseason, Mauga continues to lead Kansas City in tackles after the Chiefs upset the Chargers, 23-20, in San Diego on Sunday.
After recording five tackles in 52 plays on defense and four on special teams, Mauga increased his career-best season total to 41 (38 solo) as the Chiefs (3-3) continue their charge to the playoffs. The defense also held the Chargers to their lowest points total since a Week 1 loss at Arizona.
“The thing I’ve been enjoying the most is being able to strap it up every day and do what I love to do,” Mauga said.
Mauga has been one of the Chiefs’ brightest stars on defense so far this season as he leads the team with 10 more tackles than Husain Abdullah, who has 31. Mays, who was No. 1 on the depth chart at one of the two inside linebacker positions, is expected to return to practice in two weeks, according to head coach Andy Reid. Reid said on the team website that Mays had screws taken out of his wrist, but he wants to rehab him more before going on the field.
Mauga, though, said there’s always room to improve and help his chances at being one of the team’s go-to stops on defense.
“To continue to get better every day,” he said. “There’s always something I can be working on, whether it’s my foot work, reading routes or communication.”
On the offensive side of the ball, the Chiefs had possession for 39 minutes as they kept Phillip Rivers and the Chargers offense off the field. Running back Jamaal Charles also had another big day, this time breaking the team’s career rushing yard mark with 6,113 yards, passing Priest Holmes’ mark of 6,070.
Kansas City returns home this week as St. Louis, fresh off its upset of Seattle, visits Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs are a 1/2 game out of the second wild card going into Week 8.
“You know, it’s definitely our goal to get to the postseason but as of right now, our focus is taking it one game at a time,” Mauga said.
Off the field, though, Mauga said he plans on attending one of the World Series games this week with the Giants and Royals battling.
“I can’t wait to see both teams in action but I’ve always been a Giants fan since my Little League days, so I’ll definitely be rooting for my Giants,” Mauga added.