After a much-needed bye week and trade deadline that upset many fans, the LA Chargers are gearing up for a Week 9 showdown against the Atlanta Falcons. The week officially started with Brandon Staley and co. talking to the media on Wednesday and it could not have gone worse for Chargers fans.
First of all, fans already had to deal with the fact that Cordarelle Patterson is returning from the IR and is back practicing with the Falcons. Patterson averages 5.9 yards per carry and is coming up against the defense that allows the most yards per carry in the league.
The bad news kept coming when Brandon Staley and Keenan Allen spoke to the media. When asked about Allen, who was not seen practicing on Monday, Staley confirmed that Allen's hamstring injury has not responded like the team was hoping it would and that his status for Week 9 is up in the air.
Allen later spoke to the media, confirming that he suffered a setback during the bye week while training. The veteran wide receiver also said that he will not play with any sort of snap count as he is not going to return until he is 100% ready to go.
The LA Chargers are in a lot of trouble without Keenan Allen.
While the team did not rule Allen out of Week 9's game, it seems very unlikely that the veteran receiver will play based on how the injury has been handled and how it has responded thus far. I would bank on Allen missing at least one more game, and quite frankly, perhaps 2-3.
This leaves the receiver room in a tough spot. Josh Palmer and Donald Parham were cleared out of concussion protocol, per Staley, but their status for this Sunday is still TBD. There is a world in which Justin Herbert will be without his WR1, WR2, WR3, TE2 and RB2; not to mention his franchise left tackle.
If Palmer does not play then the receivers that Herbert will have to throw to in this game will be a career special teams player in DeAndre Carter and practice-squad receivers in Michael Bandy, Jason Moore and whoever else the team elevates from the practice squad.
This makes the team's decision to stand pat at the trade deadline even more questionable. While there are future things such as draft capital and cap that teams absolutely have to account for, the Chargers still could have done something instead of just banking on players who won't return for another month. Considering this might be the most important stretch of the season, fans have every right to be upset with the lack of activity.
Brandon Staley certainly did not cool the fanbase off when asked what his message would be to fans who are frustrated with the lack of moves.
All fans can do at this point is cross their fingers and hope everything works out. If not, this season may start to slip away from Staley and the Bolts.