4 nightmare scenarios for the Chargers in 2023

As Chargers fans well know, things can go sideways quickly during a season.

AFC Wild Card Playoffs - Los Angeles Chargers v Jacksonville Jaguars
AFC Wild Card Playoffs - Los Angeles Chargers v Jacksonville Jaguars / Courtney Culbreath/GettyImages
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4. The Denver Broncos actually figure it out and are in the playoff hunt

The final nightmare scenario is something that is mostly out of the Chargers' control. The Chargers can make a difference when these two teams play but the Denver Broncos ultimately pave their own destiny in 2023.

Denver was one of the most disappointing teams of 2022 as the acquisition of Russell Wilson did not go as planned. To counter that, the Broncos went out and traded even more draft capital to be able to hire future Hall of Fame head coach Sean Payton, who many Chargers fans were hoping would come to LA.

This does not guarantee success for the Broncos as there are still roster holes as well as Wilson's regression in his 30s that is worth monitoring. But the team still made as big of an upgrade as physically possible at head coach by going from Nathaniel Hackett to Payton.

Payton got the most out of 40-year-old Drew Brees when he did not fully have it anymore and he could do the same with Wilson. The Broncos have a decent run-blocking offensive line and good options at running back to lean into that style of play. With a talented defense, it is not absurd to think that we could see a slightly worse version of the late 2010s New Orleans Saints.

That obviously would make the road tougher for the Chargers as they would not only be competing for a playoff spot but they suddenly would have to play a playoff team twice in the regular season. Right now those games seem like easy wins for the Bolts but that might not be the case.

To make matters more interesting, these two teams don't play until late in the season. The Chargers and Broncos play in Week 14 and Week 17. It would be better if Denver was awful and wasn't playing for anything but there is a chance that the Week 17 game could decide a playoff spot.