After watching the Baltimore Ravens lose to the Cincinnati Bengals earlier in Week 18, the LA Chargers had absolutely nothing to play for against the Denver Broncos. The fifth seed in the AFC was already locked in for the Bolts and a match up against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC Wild Card Round awaited.
It seemed plausible, if not likely, that Brandon Staley would rest most of his starters with the game being meaningless. Instead, Staley wanted his starters to stay in the rhythm that they have been in over the last month. Understandable, but at the end of the day, Staley was still playing with fire with this decision.
And what do you know, Staley and the Chargers were burned. The starters were kept in longer than they should have been and Mike Williams suffered a needless back injury that never should've happened in the first place.
While it initially didn't seem very serious as Williams walked off the field on his own power, things quickly seemed to escalate. Chargers fans were met with the unfortunate news that Williams had to be carded back to the locker room before the end of the first half.
A Mike Williams injury is devastating for the Chargers.
It is hard to overstate just how important Mike Williams is to the Chargers’ offense. It became apparent this season that the office is not the same without Justin Herbert's best contested-catch specialist.
If Williams cannot play against the Jaguars it completely changes the dynamic of the entire game. Well the Jaguars may not be the Chiefs or Bills, they are still a dangerous team with a dangerous quarterback who actually has healthy pass catchers.
Making matters worse is how the Chargers handled their active roster in this game. Los Angeles intentionally only activated four wide receivers in a game that means absolutely nothing. With Williams out, this puts more stress on the other receivers and does not give them the rest they should have had in Week 18.
Brandon Staley better hope that Williams' injury is not as serious as it appeared to be. Staley finally fell back into the good graces of Chargers fans and if they get eliminated because of a needless injury he will once again be unpopular.