The San Diego Chargers must feel they're living charmed lives these days.

How else to explain that everything they needed to have happen -- and more -- fell into place to allow them to sneak into the playoffs for the first time in four years?

"It feels like this season is meant to be special," Pro Bowl safety Eric Weddle said after another heart-stopping win against the Kansas City Chiefs, 27-24 in overtime Sunday, gave the Chargers the AFC's final postseason spot.

Nick Novak kicked a 36-yard field goal with 5:30 left in overtime to give San Diego (9-7) its only lead of the day. The Chargers, who trailed by 10 points in the fourth quarter, then held the Chiefs on downs to win it.

The Chargers have needed help from other teams for weeks. Everything worked out for them Sunday. Miami and Baltimore both lost, meaning San Diego could clinch the No. 6 seed with a win or tie.

  • Nick Foles and the Philadelphia Eagles completed a worst-to-first turnaround under rookie coach Chip Kelly.

    Foles threw two touchdown passes, NFL rushing champion LeSean McCoy had 131 yards and a receiving score, and the Eagles (10-6) beat the host Dallas Cowboys 24-22 in a win-or-go-home game for the NFC East title.

    The Cowboys (8-8), with Kyle Orton filling in two days after Tony Romo had back surgery, lost to a division rival with a playoff berth on the line for the third straight year.


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    McCoy finished with 1,607 yards to become the first Philadelphia running back to win the rushing title since Hall of Famer Steve Van Buren in 1949.

    Defending champs out

    The Baltimore Ravens aren't used to this. The defending Super Bowl champions were eliminated with a 34-17 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals.

    "Not going to the playoffs hurts," running back Ray Rice said. "I'm not used to having this kind of time on my hands."

    The Ravens (8-8) lost their last two games, denying them a chance to make the playoffs for a sixth straight season. They became the 15th Super Bowl champ that failed to reach the playoffs the next season, and the sixth in the last 12 years.

    Browns fire coach

    Rob Chudzinski didn't even get a full year to fix the dreadful Browns. Cleveland's front office fired Chudzinski after his first season, which started promising but ended with a seven-game losing streak and a 4-12 record. Chudzinski had been in place only since Jan. 11.

    Gonzalez's swan song

    Tony Gonzalez is ready for the next chapter of his life.

    The tight end reaffirmed that he doesn't plan to play another NFL game after his Atlanta Falcons lost 21-20 to the Carolina Panthers.

    "It's time for me to go into the next stage of life just like everybody else," he said. "Nobody's immune to this, and the way I've been able to go out on my own terms, it's a blessing."

    His wife and three kids greeted him with hugs at halftime after Falcons owner Arthur Blank presented him a commemorative helmet and the Georgia Dome flashed video highlights of his 12 years with Kansas City and five with Atlanta.

    Vinatieri milestone

    Indianapolis kicker Adam Vinatieri became the seventh NFL player to score 2,000 points, then passed a Pro Football Hall of Famer and an old friend to move into fifth on the career list. Vinatieri, 41, finished the season with 2,006 points, passing George Blanda (2,002) and Matt Stover (2,004).

    Ryan will return

    Shortly after Sunday's 20-7 victory over Miami to conclude an 8-8 season, New York Jets owner Woody Johnson told the team that Rex Ryan would return for a sixth season in 2014. "Everyone in the locker room was ecstatic," quarterback Geno Smith said.

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