Nov 17, 2013; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; San Diego Chargers running back Ryan Mathews (24) stiff arms Miami Dolphins middle linebacker Dannell Ellerbe (59) during the second half at Sun Life Stadium. Miami won 20-16. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Ryan Mathews Has Been Creating A New Perception

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews has been running with authority this season. He has been putting his head down and running over defenders. He is shedding off the label of an injured, fumbling running back and is starting to get some respect around the league. We have to give a lot of credit to his offensive line this year also. He has had some gaping holes to run through this year with the help of those monsters up front.

Mathews has gotten to the second level on multiple occasions because of the guys up front. When he gets to that next level, he has beaten defenders in the open field to gain more yards and he has been dealing pain out to the defenders when he is going down.

There was a time when we all wondered if he could break off a run more than 15 yards in a game, but he has done on multiple occasions in the last couple of weeks. He has been patient and has found the holes to run through. Even with a patchwork offensive line, he is getting big chunks of yards and he rarely has a negative play in the running game.

There still are things that he can improve upon. He still misses his blocking assignments in the passing game and that is why he is rarely used on 3rd downs. Once he gets that part of the game locked down, he will be well-rounded.

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  • Travis

    Twitter @MartyCaswell: LT on Ryan Mathews’ SD future “My gut feeling will say no, because i think someone will offer him more than San Diego is willing to pay him… Ideally, I wish I could have mentored him, been on the same team with him & you start to phase me out by putting Ryan Mathews in.”

    • Gunnar Martin

      Just another reason why Tomlinson was, still is, and always will be the best.

  • jamfed

    I like him, but I”m biased (he’s from my home town). Ryan Matthews has either DALLAS COWBOYS or CLEVELAND BROWNS written all over him. I’ll guess he’s traded in April 2014 (draft day).

    • Peter Thompson

      I hope not… but I wish him well. Would be weird seeing him in another uni.

      • arnie

        I believe in TT, but If money is going to be the factor to keeping player that has proven he can play. He’d better have one heck of an off-season.

        • Peter Thompson

          If they will pay to keep Ronnie Brown’s ass around, they better make a fair offer.
          ; )

  • Peter Thompson

    He is my favorite Charger this year. Hands down. He has done what has been asked of him, stayed healthy, stayed humble, improved dramatically, and still gets no respect from Whisenhunt. Tjat is why The “Whiz” is falling flat on his face. Truth. Hope he stays in SD, but it’s not much hope. They probably won’t.

    • Gunnar Martin

      I have nothing to disagree with you there. Whiz can go suck an egg. Mathews deserves more than what he’s been given.

    • Blue&gold_blood

      Yeah, Mathews has really stepped up this year . My 2nd favorite charger this year. Rivers my 1st lol

    • blu3ny3llow

      You know if they don’t think highly of him but think he is good enough…maybe better….sign him for not that much..n u get a good player…I’m sure because of the perception of him he might not be very popular in free agency ….wait it is his contract year right…but still draft a RB in the Fourth round…sorry but Ronnie will be gonna…just saying though

      BOLTZ UP

      • blu3ny3llow

        Well maybe I’m wrong…..hell get more money elsewhere…. n be good ala Lynch

    • arnie

      See Peter here’s my thing about Whiz. I don’t think he trusts Mathews. I really believe he isn’t “whiz” type of RB. The think the organization needs to consider is this, who is potentially going to be here longer? If RM24 walks in FA, and they get whiz a RB he wants, there is a good chance Whiz won’t be here past 2014 and whiz’s RB will be stuck here to learn a new system. If they pay Mathews he’s still tradable, whether whiz stays or goes.

      • Peter Thompson

        Very true, Arnie. I think TT will pick his guy, and Whisenhunt will adapt, or be gone. TT is probably on a 3 year draft path, anyway. It was just up to Whisenhunt to use what was in front of him properly, even if Mathews is gone next season. To show “management” that he knows a good thing when he sees it, even if he is not THE thing. It would show them that he can coordinate whoever they put in front of him, and win with the pieces given.. I atead of beating a dead redzone horse, and holding out fir a guy that you might not be around to caoch. With the easy opportunities that this coaching staff has missed… they will either adapt to what’s put in front of them, or lose their jobs. Unless TT is an idiot, in which case we are fucked for years… again. Hope that isn’t the case.

        • arnie

          I don’t think TT is an idiot, I think he was put between a rock and a hard spot. This team is is filled with inexperienced players, guys that haven’t played together before, and being starters for the whole season for the first time.
          My thing is why complicate that by finding a new power back, when you already have one? Whiz hasn’t used what’s in front him properly, Tutu, Green, an Royal seem to able to stretch then field with Allen, yet Royal has seen less time and the other two are watching from the sideline. These guys open up what Gates, Woodhead, and Mathews do underneath, and prove thy can help in clutch and redzone.

  • RZ

    I would give him the Rock at least 20 times a game run or pass…coaching sucks for not recognizing and using him like they should be,it’s frustrating to say the least!

  • arnie

    Well there it is, it’s put up or shut up time for he front office. See at this point if Mathews has been a big disappointment, it’s easy to say goodbye at years end and move on. As of right now I don’t see how the Chargers can move into 2014 without him. The kid hasn’t been great in pass protection, but he’s rarely ever out there. And the one time he did get his shot, it was at a critical point in the game? If that and the two fumbles is the sole reason he isn’t here next season expect Rivers to struggle more in the passing game. Let’s be real, McLain and Brown will not be here, and this team is going to round out he backs with a draft pick and another teams cast off? That leaves Woodhead as the lead back. Danny while an awesome back, doesn’t have the size to power through tackles or speed to outrace the secondary, like Mathews.
    At this point Mathews may not be “There Guy”, but he is definately playing well in this offense and maturing into “Da Man”. Whiz while having a great résumé, is also the same guy that refuse to start Matt Lineart and never recovered. His unwillingness to run Mathews in “obvious” situations, I can say clearly has cost this team 3 wins. If there is any considerations as far as Mathews is concerned? It should be who do you want calling the plays in 2014.

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  • doomedby2020

    Mathews is much improved this year, despite a fumble while jumping the goal line at the beginning of the season (Gates picked it up). But if he fumbles next game he falls back to square one, despite his gains. Otherwise, the longer he plays without a fumble, the more he becomes less of a fumbler.

    Pretty sure he’ll be traded next year and become a great RB for another team.