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
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.