Relax pervs, this isn’t that “O” face! Rather this is the “OH MY GOD WHAT WAS THAT!?” face. I lost track of how many times I made that face during last Sunday’s game. I have to be careful…as my mother said “you keep making that face its going to stay like that!” This article and this “O” goes to just how offensively bad our O-Line has been. Philip Rivers has made some awful decisions, yes, but this all can be traced back to our offensive line…and by association, AJ Smith.
Rivers has been sacked 26 times in 10 games ths year which puts him on pace for a career high of 42 times this season! That is the 5th highest number of times in the NFL through the first 10 games. It is not just the number of times he is sacked, Rivers is constantly under pressure. He has been hit more times than Rihanna on a date with Chris Brown. During Sunday’s game, Rivers was either hit or hurried on 20 of his 40 dropbacks!
Now, some people will argue that Rivers is making bad decisions even when not under pressure, and to that I say “you’ve never been hit in competitve football before then.” When you get hit over and over again, you start to feel pressure even when its not there. That lack of faith in his protection is triggering many of his rushed and errant throws. To put a different spin on it, how many ties do you see a WR drop a pass because he feels he’s about to get destroyed by a defender? Or for you non-players out there. You know that overly jealous guy/girl you dated and you swear sometimes they were following you and at the mall you would turn around just to check? Same concept.
One of the things that fans, coaches and players know, is that when you are deep in your own territory you don’t want to be forced into 3rd and long situations where the defense can just sit back on the pass. That is when turnovers happen. Yet, 69% of the times Rivers has been sacked has occured in Chargers end of the field. Not surprisingly, 8 of his 14 INT’s have happened in their own territory with 7 of those picks happening in 2nd or 3rd and long situations.
Despite all this…Rivers has the 3rd highest quarterback rating of those wo have been sacked the most in the league this season. Are you seeing a trend here? Rivers is doing better than most under the circumstances. Some argue that stats don’t tell the whole story…well how about this “coincdence” then: of the top 10 QBs least sacked this year, 6 of them rank in the top 10 in overall QB Rating. So less sacks in turn means better play by your QB. Shocking.
This offensive line is bad, and if you watched the game you will remmber Rivers getting destroyed by Von Miller at the 2 minute warning before halftime. You will also remember Rivers motioning his line to slide right to pick up the blitz he saw coming. They didn’t…and you wonder why Rivers has no faith in protection and constantly feels that “ghost pressure.”
We lost the starting left side of our OL coming into this year and we ALL knew that OL was the biggest need to upgrade and get depth at (right along CB). Yet AJ Smith did litle to nothing to address it. Go and look at our roster, here is the link www.chargers.com and tell me you would trust standing behind them.
Rivers is making that “O” face…his stands for “Oh thank god I already have 6 kids because taking all these hits I may not be able to have anymore“.