The San Diego Chargers might be one of the unluckiest teams in the NFL.
After losing their top receiver in Keenan Allen to a torn ACL last Sunday, the Chargers will now be without another playmaker in running back Danny Woodhead.
#Chargers RB Danny Woodhead has torn his ACL, source said. His MRI just came back. He's out for the season. Bad blow.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 19, 2016
Just awful, awful news. Woodhead hurt his knee after being tackled by Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith late in the first quarter. At first, there was speculation that he suffered a sprained MCL, which would have been best-case scenario. It’s unfathomable to see the Chargers get hit this hard by injuries–again.
Woodhead was one of the most valuable pieces that the Chargers couldn’t afford to lose. He led all running backs in receiving yards (755) and his 80 catches tied for the most in the NFL among backs in 2015. He was the ultimate safety valve for QB Philip Rivers.
Luckily, 2015 first-rounder Melvin Gordon has looked dominant in the team’s first two games. He had a multi-touchdown game in Week 1 against the Chiefs and rushed for his first career 100-yard game in Week 2 against the Jaguars–and these performances came against tough front sevens.
But Woodhead brought a whole different game to the Chargers. Without him, the Chargers lack an elite third-down specialist. In 2014, Woodhead missed 13 games due to a broken leg, and it was clear how much Rivers missed him that season. As of now, former Giants RB Andre Williams and undrafted free agent Kenneth Farrow are depth. Branden Oliver is also out for the year after suffering a torn Achilles in the preseason.
The Chargers might want to take a look at C.J. Spiller, Ronnie Hillman or Dexter McCluster. All three are under 30 years of age and can help on third downs if needed.
Realistically, nobody can ever replace what Woodhead brought to the Chargers. Let’s hope the Bolts can still have success without him.