The Chargers went next man up with the loss of Dontrelle Inman, but his loss may have hurt the team much more than originally expected.
The Chargers moved on from Tyrell Williams for a variety of reasons, but the parting of ways was mostly due to the contract he was going to seek in free agency. Tom Telesco could possibly have squeezed in a deal that fit the team this year, but he had the next few years in mind, which made it impossible to bring him back.
The Chargers were set to try out a number of receivers at the third and fourth wide receiver position, though Travis Benjamin was projected to take on most of those snaps behind Keenan Allen and Mike Williams. Most assumed it would be a three-man race between Artavis Scott, Geremy Davis, and Dylan Cantrell; as of Week 13, neither have made much of a receiving impact, due in large part to injuries.
The Chargers signed Dontrelle Inman to take on that role with the team, and in his final game, he was able to do just that: Five catches for 76 yards against the Miami Dolphins was exactly what the team hoped for out of their rotation behind the two starters. Unfortunately, it would be the last pass he would catch this season (so far), as he was moved to injured reserve with a quad injury.
Preseason darling Andre Patton and rookie Jason Moore were the next men up, and it looked like the Chargers would have to rely on their young players to step up. The result: No catches for any of their receivers not named Allen or Williams since Week 6.
And it’s hurting the team.
Philip Rivers' decision-making is deteriorating. That's been the case all season. Perhaps the most damning example came last night, on this interception in the fourth quarter. Look at how much space Austin Ekeler has. Rivers never even looks at him. https://t.co/BzIJpjD6w3 pic.twitter.com/Ny7pcMu5Rk
— Daniel Popper (@danielrpopper) November 19, 2019
Here’s what I can’t help but shake from my mind: Does the crafty veteran Inman make that catch, or set up pass interference, or simply bail out his quarterback with a better attempt to get the football? It’s by no means a dime from Rivers, but could the receiver have done a bit of a better job? Someone needs to step up for this team, because their quarterback is going to look their way a few times a game.