2. The LA Chargers won’t have a game that doesn’t matter
Three years ago, a young Patrick Mahomes started in place of Alex Smith in Week 17 against the Denver Broncos and got the first win of his career as a starting quarterback. The game had no playoff implications for the Chiefs and the team could afford to potentially lose and let the young quarterback get a taste.
I do not care how good you think the Chargers are going to be in 2020, there is absolutely no chance that they are in a situation like that where there is no playoff implications on the line. The only way would be if the team shocked the world and only lost two or so games, and let’s be honest, that is not happening.
The Chargers are not winning the AFC West while the Chiefs are still around, making the team’s goal a wild-card berth. We have seen teams that are the wild card that do not have anything to play for, that won’t be the case with the Chargers.
The Chargers are going to win right around 7-9 games, meaning that they likely won’t be miles ahead as the first wild card team. There are just too many good teams to expect the Chargers to be the best non-divisional winner in the AFC.
There is always a fight for the second wild-card spot in Week 17 and with there being a third Wild-Card spot now, it is almost certain that if the Chargers are in the playoff running then they will have to win in Week 17.
Justin Herbert is not starting if that is the case.
The 2020 LA Chargers is Tyrod Taylor’s team and despite the intrigue of Herbert, we won’t see him as anything more than a late-game substitution in potential blowouts. That is it.