Just thought you’d like to know what my boys over @ Rotowire think of the Chargers offense in 2011. Every year (around June 1), RW (where I cover the Padres), puts out their projections for the upcoming football season and posts them on-line for subscribers. They may tweak them a bit, but they are, most likely, the numbers you will see when their Fantasy Football mag hits newstands…. So, away we go:
Phillip Rivers – 509 Attempts, 4377 Passing Yards, 30 TDs and 10 INTs. Those equate, primarily, to the year he had in 2010 (..without Antonio Gates for six games, Vincent Jackson and Malcom Floyd for a combined 16 games and Ryan Mathews for four).
Mathews – 295 carries for 1356 yards and eight rushing TDs, with 42 catches for another 287 receiving yards and another TD. You would take a 1700-yard season out of any RB and this would be tremendous for Mathews’ owners and, even more so, his fans.
Gates – 74 catches for 1010 yards and nine TDs. I tend to think the expectation for Gates to have a 1000-yard season is a bit optimistic (only done it twice) and assumes he stays healthy.
Jackson – 60 catches for 1010 yards and eight TDs. The bigger number here is how many YPC we see. If Jackson keeps it over 17, I would expect double-digit scores.
Floyd – 59 catches for 799 yards and five TDs. Floyd has only been healthy for one season in his career, so it may be difficult to assume he sticks around for these chances, but if he does, 30+ PPG is not out of the realm.
Mike Tolbert – 124 carries for 516 yards, five rushing TDs with 13 catches and 112 yards.
Darren Sproles – 40 rushes for 203 yards with 48 grabs, 460 yards and a TD.
Nate Kaeding – #6 Placekicker
Kevin Burnett – 2 INTs, 90 tackles, four sacks and a TD.
Eric Weddle – 3 INTs, 94 tackles and a sack.
Overall Defense – #8 rated overall.
So, in sum, your QB throws for close to 4000 yards and 30 TDs, your RBs combine for 2300 yards rushing and 13 TDs and a receiving corps with two players over a 1000 yards. With all those yards, you would think they should stay on the field more than your top 10 defense, which can come up with big stops when they need it. But, a tough schedule looms (@ NWE, @ NYJ, Green Bay, @ Chicago and Baltimore) and should they start slow….well, you know that story. Overall, I’m looking @ 11-5 or 12-4 with a bye in the first round.