The Chargers fell to the New Orleans Saints in their second preseason game. What could be learned from the 19-17 loss at home?
The Chargers lost their second preseason game in a row, falling to the visiting Saints after practicing with them throughout the week prior. What are some of the takeaways from the game?
Offensive line/Running backs:
The Chargers offensive line got dominated by the Saints in Sunday’s game. All three Chargers quarterbacks seemed to be under pressure almost instantly on every play. Although the Saints only recorded one sack, the pressure could be seen on every play. The line looked slightly better when there was a lot of pulling on sweep and outside run plays, but overall, they were flat out atrocious as a unit. It is well known the Chargers’ offensive line is a point of concern, but without the security (at least for the first few weeks) of Pro-Bowl left tackle Russell Okung, the overall depth of the line becomes an immediate problem. Third-round pick Trey Pipkins (tackle) looked intimidated and has yet to really show anything to excite Chargers fans. Trent Scott didn’t look much better, getting bullied on a few snaps.
HE GONNNNNNE ? pic.twitter.com/05Dxs0GCib
— Los Angeles Chargers (@Chargers) August 18, 2019
The running back room is still without Melvin Gordon, but they had a decent showing on Sunday, especially considering their offensive line wasn’t much help. With Justin Jackson and Austin Ekeler locking up the first and second string spots, a lot of people expected Detrez Newsome to be the third player to round out the group; instead, Troymaine Pope showed that might not be the case. Pope came in the game and showed his ability to run hard and made a few catches out of the backfield, but his biggest play was an 81-yard punt return touchdown to close out the first half. These are the kind of plays that can help a guy like Pope make the 53-man roster. It should be a great battle for that third spot.