Shane Steichen took the Chargers offense and never looked back en route to the team’s best game of the season. Here’s where he shined the most.
The Chargers got the most out of their offense on Sunday, thanks in large part to a change at offensive coordinator. While Shane Steichen didn’t reinvent the NFL offensea, he did exactly what a coordinator should do given his current roster: Maximize the talent. Here are four ways he impressed on Sunday:
Chargers exploited a Packers weakness
When a defense has a weakness, do everything on offense to exploit it. Hunter Henry was a dominant force coming into this game, and it appeared the Packers had no idea how to stop tight ends heading into Week 9. The result: Seven catches for 84 yards.
Steichen was fully prepared to let Henry beat the Packers until they finally stopped him. They couldn’t stop him, and No. 86 dominated.
Chargers threw to their running backs
First in line for the “duh” section of how to run this offense (more to come): Throw to Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler, who do their best work in space. They, along with a catch from Justin Jackson, totaled eight catches for 59 yards. It’s not a spectacular number, but remember the Chargers weren’t exactly trying to play catch up the entire game either. That’s still 7.38 yards per reception, which is good enough to get plenty of first downs.
Against the Chicago Bears, Chargers running backs caught just four passes. Steichen found a way to help Ekeler continue his receiving role while getting more out of Gordon, and their seven combined receptions proved to make a difference against the Packers.
Chargers finished in the second half
The Packers were gassed in the fourth quarter, and there was no way their defense was going to stop Gordon and Ekeler, who were relatively fresh even after three quarters of play. Two touchdowns to put the stamp on the most dominant game the Chargers have had against a very good team in years.
Admittedly the strong finish is more on the interior offensive line than Steichen, but he still put the team in the position to finish the game off. One play in particular that stood out was the bomb to Mike Williams at the end of the third quarter:
— Los Angeles Chargers (@Chargers) November 3, 2019
No need to wait and see if Aaron Rodgers could mount a comeback, because the Chargers were going to make that comeback impossible.
Chargers used a fullback at the goal line
Here’s the second “duh” of the season: Use a fullback on the goal line, particularly if the offense hasn’t had success in short situations all year. The Chargers finished the game off with two rushing touchdowns, easy scores behind a strong interior offensive line and key blocks from Derek Watt.