Overreaction #2: The LA Chargers need to make a kicking change
The Special Teams unit is another reason the LA Chargers lost tonight. Specifically Michael Badgley. Jason Reed unjustly took a lot of heat for his previously-mentioned article on the topic.
It has been quite apparent that they do not trust him to hit from long range, unless absolutely necessary. Badgley is now two for six in kicks from 50 yards or more in his career. He has the franchise record for longest field goal ever when he hit from 59 yards against the Bengals in 2018.
But he’s never been a Justin Tucker or Harrison Butker type that has a booming leg, and the Chargers knew that. They’ve been able to count on his accuracy from short range but now that appears to be shot as well. After the game, coach Anthony Lynn said that Badgley is healthy, and making kicks in practice at a high level, but that has not carried over to games.
He is not even able to perform kickoffs at a high level either. Punter Ty Long handles those duties, and to his credit, he does it well. But what is the point of keeping a kicker around if your team is handicapped in every which way by him not being able to perform the necessary responsibilities?
If a short-range kicker, is no longer accurate it’s time to move on. This isn’t college where you can rely upon those guys. You need a guy who you can count on to make a 50 yarder for the win, and the Chargers no longer have that guy.
Verdict: Not an overreaction. Time for a change.