Joey Bosa has not played since Week 3 against the Jacksonville Jaguars. The LA Chargers' All-Pro rusher suffered a torn groin in that game, kickstarting a mountain of injuries that the Bolts would have to overcome to clinch a playoff spot in Week 16.
Bosa's status has been up in the air for several weeks now with his original timeline projecting him to already have returned by now. Chargers fans finally got some clarity before Monday night's game, as NFL Network's Bridget Condon reported that Bosa is expected to return to practice this week.
Brandon Staley refused to stoke the flames on Tuesday by saying that they are taking Bosa's situation on a day-to-day basis. While Chargers fans did not get the confirmation they were looking for from the head coach, they may have gotten it from the players on the defense. Both Kyle Van Noy and Breiden Fehoko took to Twitter with separate memes regarding Joey Bosa, which might just signal that he is indeed returning in Week 17.
Would Van Noy and Fehoko really take the time to tweet these separate jokes out mere minutes after each other if they were not confident that Bosa was going to return this week? It seems like the Chargers' defense may have gotten some pretty good news around 2 p.m. and prompted the great tweets from Van Noy and Fehoko.
This Chargers defense is legitimately lethal with Joey Bosa in the fold.
After a disappointing 2021 and a bad start to the 2022 season, Brandon Staley's defense is finally starting to come into form on the Chargers. The defense is playing well at all three levels and is playing like a cohesive unit and it shows.
Since the bye week, the Chargers have allowed just 18.9 points per game. If you take out Tyreek Hill's fluke fumble touchdown, the Chargers' defense has allowed a flat 18 points per game. The team's third-down defense has really rounded into shape as well. The Chargers have the best third-down conversion rate on defense over the last three weeks, allowing just 18.75% of third downs to be converted.
Add Joey Bosa into the mix and these numbers are only going to get better. Not only is Bosa going to add a massive jolt to a pass rush that has really come alive over the last few weeks, but he is going to significantly help set the edge against the run as well.
While the team clinched the playoffs, there still is plenty to play for over the next two weeks. If the Chargers can win out and Baltimore can lose one of two then the Bolts can be the fifth seed and would take on the winner of the AFC South. That is far better than having to play the Kansas City Chiefs or Cincinnati Bengals in the Wild Card Round.
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So while the team should absolutely be cautious in easing Joey Bosa back into shape, there is plenty to play for and throwing him out there is not completely pointless.