The Los Angeles Chargers rout the Raiders in the season finale, but come up short of playoffs with Jacksonville’s loss to Tennessee.
The dichotomy of emotions on Sunday evening was so ever-present, at least for me. Absolutely drubbing the Raiders by 20 and sweeping the season series against the Chargers’ most hated rival is awesome, but missing out on the playoffs based on the results of a four-team tiebreaker is a little harder to deal with. But, I think there’s more positive points than negative points to talk about with this game, and on a larger note, the season. Let’s get into it.
1. The Chargers’ kicking situation is unprecedentedly bad
I don’t think I can really sum up how terrible the Chargers’ kicking situation has been. It’s like watching your favorite movie character die every time you re-watch the movie, except you have to re-watch it every week. You know it’s going to go badly, but you just have to watch.
Nick Rose isn’t coming back next year after these two games. I feel like we can put that one to bed. It’s just so strange to me to see a team that has some of the best depth in the league at some positions struggle so mightily in the one position that shouldn’t be all that hard to fill. A lot of this does have to deal with Nick Novak’s injury, and I’m probably not writing about this if that doesn’t happen. Younghoe Koo was rough in his first two outings, cut. Novak gets injured, IR. Travis Coons plays well but isn’t the “long-term solution”, cut. Then, Rose goes one of three with two terrible misses and was way worse than Coons. Because, Chargers.
It didn’t cost the team this game, nor did it cost them some of their prior games, like vs. Dallas or the New York Jets. But it cost them Denver. It cost them Miami. At the end of the day, it ended up costing the team a trip to the playoffs. I don’t know what the solution is, who to sign or draft, or how the coaching staff even goes about this. But it must be fixed in the offseason.