Philip Rivers compares the current Los Angeles Chargers team to the 2006-09 team. Rivers is looking to lead the current Chargers team to its first Super Bowl appearance.
The Chargers will, unfortunately, be without Derwin James and Russell Okung. Adrian Phillips will likely take James’ place until he returns. When Joey Bosa was out, the Chargers managed to go 7-2, until his return. But Okung seems irreplaceable, at the moment.
The Chargers offensive line struggled massively last season, and with Okung out, it could get worse. Melvin Gordon has still not reached a contract agreement, but the Chargers have enough depth, featuring Austin Ekeler, Justin Jackson, and Detrez Newsome, to take care of the running back duties.
On Thursday, Philip Rivers compared the 2019-2020 team to the 2006-09 Chargers team.
Philip Rivers said this Chargers core can do something similar to the group that won the AFC West four years in a row: "I think we’re in a similar window as we were in from ‘06 to ‘09. … That doesn't mean it’s just going to happen, but I do feel like we’re in that window."
— Gilbert Manzano (@GManzano24) August 15, 2019
Rivers and the Chargers have a chance to do something special this season. The defense is led by Melvin Ingram, Bosa, Casey Hayward, and James. This is similar to when the Bolts had Shaun Phillips, Shawne Merriman, Antonio Cromartie, and Eric Weddle.
The offense is led by Rivers, Austin Ekeler, Keenan Allen, and Hunter Henry which is similar to Rivers, LaDanian Tomlinson, Vincent Jackson, and Antonio Gates from over a decade ago. The only difference is, Rivers is more experienced now and has one goal in mind: Winning the Super Bowl.
This Chargers team has the talent to win a Super Bowl, no question about it. However, will they be healthy going into the playoffs? James will be out for 3-4 months due to a stress fracture in his fifth metatarsal. He will have foot surgery.
Okung is recovering from a pulmonary embolism, that he called a “near-death” experience. There’s no timetable for his return, but obviously, his health is much more important.
Last season, in the Wild Card game, the Chargers defeated the Ravens in Baltimore, but in the divisional round, they fell short against the New England Patriots.
Henry wasn’t at 100 percent even though he was on the field in that game, and he just didn’t look like himself. Now, he’s healthy, and the league better be ready for the trio of Allen, Henry, and Mike Williams, giving Rivers plenty of options to work with.
As long as the Chargers are fully healthy come playoff time, they will have a great chance to make a Super Bowl appearance. This team is similar to the 2006-09 team, and if they remain healthy, the only difference may be a Super Bowl championship.