LA Chargers News

Chargers Injuries and Impact: Defensive line injuries important against Titans

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 21: Marcus Mariota (8) of the Tennessee Titans holds off Jatavis Brown (57) of the Los Angeles Chargers during the Tennessee Titans against the Los Angeles Chargers at Wembley Stadium on October 21, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 21: Marcus Mariota (8) of the Tennessee Titans holds off Jatavis Brown (57) of the Los Angeles Chargers during the Tennessee Titans against the Los Angeles Chargers at Wembley Stadium on October 21, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)
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CARSON, CALIFORNIA – OCTOBER 13: Wide receiver Travis Benjamin #12 of the Los Angeles Chargers reacts during a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Dignity Health Sports Park on October 13, 2019 in Carson, California. (Photo by Katharine Lotze/Getty Images)
CARSON, CALIFORNIA – OCTOBER 13: Wide receiver Travis Benjamin #12 of the Los Angeles Chargers reacts during a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Dignity Health Sports Park on October 13, 2019 in Carson, California. (Photo by Katharine Lotze/Getty Images)

The Los Angeles Chargers are facing a near must-win game this weekend against the Tenessee Titans. How will injuries affect the gameplan in Week 7?

After a poor start to the year, the 2-4 Chargers are facing a pivotal matchup against the Titans. The outcome of this matchup could very well determine whether the Chargers are playing for a playoff spot or a pick in the 2020 NFL Draft over the rest of the season.

With that in mind, how will injuries impact the Chargers gameplan against the Titans? Find out below.

Chargers’ Injuries

Justin Jackson, Running Back – Out (Calf)

Once again, Jackson will be out, as his calf injury is apparently quite substantial.

While his injury initially seemed of relatively minor importance with Melvin Gordon‘s return, Jackson’s return is becoming more important by the game, as Gordon’s initial performance has been poor. While the Gordon/Austin Ekeler duo will work again this week, Jackson’s shiftiness has been missed.

Travis Benjamin, Wide Receiver – Out, IR (Quad)

Benjamin, who has been dealing with a quad issue, was recently placed on injured reserve.

Without Benjamin, the Chargers are lacking a speedy downfield target. However, they should be just fine considering that practically all of Benjamin’s downfield targets to this point have resulted in drops.

Mike Williams may attempt more deep routes without Benjamin, and Andre Patton will likely start to receive more playing time.

Russell Okung, Offensive Tackle – Out (Pulmonary Embolism)

The news of Russell Okung’s impending return has been the Chargers news of the week. Although he has not been activated for this week, his return will easily improve the Chargers’ pass and run blocking on Philip Rivers‘ blindside.

Oh happy day! pic.twitter.com/5j79ROagQu

— Bitcoin Cleats Guy (@RussellOkung) October 17, 2019

Still, fans should be cautious in their optimism about Okung’s status. While it is certainly an exciting development that Okung will be able to resume his career (and soon), it is unclear where he is physically right now.

While Okung was on blood thinners, his physical conditioning must have been highly limited. As we do not know the timetable of his progression, it is unclear how close to NFL game shape Okung is. The Chargers and fans, though now highly excited, must be patient with Okung and his performance.

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