Things are looking bleak for the LA Chargers heading into Week 9. Despite having a bye week to rest up and get healthy (and make a trade), the Chargers are still dealing with the same issues that haunted them before the bye week and they are now even worse.
Keenan Allen suffered a setback with his hamstring injury during the bye week and likely will not play in Week 9 against the Falcons. While nothing has been set in stone, Allen's handling of the matter makes it seem like he could miss multiple weeks as well.
Luckily, Chargers fans received some positive news on Thursday as Justin Herbert will be getting some reinforcements at the wide receiver position. Joshua Palmer told reporters that he would play on Sunday, which was initially still up in the air after he cleared concussion protocol.
While the Chargers are still going to have a pretty thin wide receiver room if Allen does not play (with Mike Williams being out as well), having Palmer back in the fold is at least something for this offense.
The Chargers desperately need a big game from Joshua Palmer in Week 9.
Many people expected the second-year receiver to have a breakout season in 2022 but that has not been the case thus far for Palmer. While he has had some decent games number-wise, a lot of his stats have come when games are already out of reach for the Bolts.
Palmer and Justin Herbert simply have not had the chemistry that fans were expecting and the connection has not been there. It is absolutely fair to say that Palmer's production this season has been very underwhelming, so this provides a fork-in-the-road moment for the young receiver.
Outside of Palmer, Herbert will have DeAndre Carter and practice-squad receivers to throw to. There is only so much that can be schemed for the running backs and tight ends and the Bolts are going to need a receiver to step up and be an outlet for Herbert. That receiver must be Palmer.
This is a good matchup for Palmer to have a breakout game that could hopefully serve as a catalyst for the rest of the season. The Atlanta Falcons are one of the worst defensive teams in the league with a horrible pass defense. If there was ever an opponent for Palmer to expose, it is the Falcons.
If Palmer plays like he has been all season then it is going to be a very long day for Chargers fans. This offense will be capped with a pretty low floor and it will be up to a bad defense to stop a really good rushing team. Probably not going to happen.