LA Chargers News

AFC Playoff Preview: How will the Chargers fit in?

CARSON, CA - NOVEMBER 25: Defensive end Joey Bosa #99 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates his sack with defensive end Melvin Ingram #54 in the second quarter against the Arizona Cardinals at StubHub Center on November 25, 2018 in Carson, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
CARSON, CA - NOVEMBER 25: Defensive end Joey Bosa #99 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates his sack with defensive end Melvin Ingram #54 in the second quarter against the Arizona Cardinals at StubHub Center on November 25, 2018 in Carson, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
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CARSON, CA – AUGUST 24: Austin Ekeler #30 of the Los Angeles Chargers follows the block of Dan Feeney #66 of the Los Angeles Chargers while playing the Seattle Seahawks in the first quarter of a pre-season NFL football game at Dignity Health Sports Park on August 24, 2019 in Carson, California. (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images)
CARSON, CA – AUGUST 24: Austin Ekeler #30 of the Los Angeles Chargers follows the block of Dan Feeney #66 of the Los Angeles Chargers while playing the Seattle Seahawks in the first quarter of a pre-season NFL football game at Dignity Health Sports Park on August 24, 2019 in Carson, California. (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images)

Chargers: An overview

The Chargers have plenty of talent. They proved that last year going 12-4 and leading the league in Pro Bowl players. However, they are heading into the 2019 season with quite a few concerns.

The Melvin Gordon news is still fresh and some media pundits out there think he has played his last game as a Charger. Derwin James was recently placed on the IR, meaning he won’t be in uniform until mid-November.

Those are certainly big losses for a team with Super Bowl dreams, but the team does have solid depth behind those two stars in Austin Ekeler, Justin Jackson, Adrian Phillips, Rayshawn Jenkins and Jaylen Watkins.

The biggest concern the Chargers are facing is the loss of Pro Bowl left tackle Russel Okung. The expectation is for him to miss at least the first six weeks. While the Clowney trade to Seattle makes the task a little less daunting, the Colts, Lions, Texans (mostly JJ Watt), Broncos, and Steelers all have stout defensive fronts. Without Okung, the team is headed into those games with the following offensive line:

#Chargers Week 1 Offensive Line:

LT Trent Scott (2nd-year UDFA, 125 career snaps)LG Dan Feeney (PFF's No. 80 OG out of 81 last yr)C Mike Pouncey (No. 29 out of 39 centers)RG Michael Schofield (Negatively graded in both pass & run block)RT Sam Tevi (No. 78 out of 80 OTs)

— Evan Silva (@evansilva) September 2, 2019

That is less than ideal. For whatever reason, the team is hesitant to put former second-round pick Forrest Lamp, who pretty clearly was the best lineman throughout the preseason, in the starting lineup. Even if they did, Chargers fans should be very concerned with the prospects of the offensive line going forward.

Offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt anq Quarterback Philip Rivers should be able to instill a well rounded enough game plan to somewhat overcome the likely offensive line weaknesses, and having the best blocking tight end in the league in Virgil Green does help.

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