LA Chargers special teams and final grades
Most weeks this season I’ve had to write something like, “special teams was a disaster today.” Honestly though, it’s hard to keep lumping in the rest of the special teams unit with how bad Michael Badgley has been.
Ty Long didn’t shank a punt. Coverage didn’t give up a big kickoff or punt return. It was simply Badgley being bad. It’s harsh to reprimand the whole special teams unit when they’ve played well in the last two weeks and he hasn’t.
Lack of aggressiveness is certainly something Lynn can be criticized on, but at what point are we gonna go, “huh, this team is being handicapped by an awful kicker.” Lynn should’ve gone for it on the 4th and 3 instead of a Badgley field goal attempt on the first missed field goal. But on a larger scale, he shouldn’t have to be doing that.
A field goal attempt should be an easy decision there if you have a mildly reliable kicker. You don’t need Justin Tucker to boot a 46 yard field goal through the uprights in an empty stadium.
That’s the part that gets me personally. Badgley is doing this in empty stadiums with no fans! In a dome! No wind. This has happened repeatedly and is just inexcusable for a kicker.
Lynn can preach accountability all he wants, but accountability can’t be achieved until Badgley is no longer on the team.
Special Teams: C
The Chargers looked clunky for large portions of this game but it was still a good effort overall. Herbert was outstanding. It feels like I say this every week, but that might’ve been the best game of his career.
The offensive line played relatively well while the running backs struggled to do much of anything behind it. This was a great, gritty effort from the young receivers on the team looking to make their mark.
The defensive line could’ve been better in the pass rush, but they did a really good job with the running game. The second level linebackers played a role in that as well. The corners and safeties simply seemed off tonight after the last month of the season where they played really well.