Week 12 @ Buffalo Bills
Remember what we said about the LA Chargers not being great at traveling to the East Coast? After those back-to-back games against the Bucs and Saints, the Chargers have to go back to Florida to play the Dolphins in Week 7 and find themselves in Buffalo in Week 12 after a road game in Denver.
This is the projected point of the season where I think the Chargers are going to reach a true fork in the road moment. At this point in the year we are truly going to know whether or not the Chargers are legitimate contenders for a playoff spot down the stretch.
Granted, with an extra playoff spot now they will probably be ‘in the hunt’ after this game, but this will be the moment in the season where the Chargers branch off into fighting for that playoff spot or start to prepare for next season.
We can expect the Chargers to be anywhere from 3-6 to 7-2 at this point in the season. The absolute best-case scenario is the team winning five games in a row after Week 5 and being 7-2 with the worst-case scenario being the Chargers dropping all three games in Weeks 2, 4 and 5 and also losing three other games on top of that.
Realistically, I think the Chargers will be somewhere between 4-5 and 5-4 at this point in the season. 6-3 is doable, but they have three losable games early on in the season and I cannot expect them to win every single game they should besides those three.
And that is why this game will decide the rest of the season. Losing yet again to a playoff-caliber foe and potentially moving to 4-6 will essentially take the Chargers out of the running. Beating the Bills and potentially moving to 6-4 would be huge for the playoff push.
If the Chargers are 5-4 at this point and lose then they would still be in the hunt for the next few weeks at 5-5, however, it is safe to say that we would not feel great about their playoff chances if they were to lose every tough game against playoff-caliber teams.