The LA Chargers are on the road in Week 5 to take on the Cleveland Browns. While the team has gotten healthier in the last two weeks, there are still several key injuries that the Bolts are dealing with in this tough matchup against a run-heavy Browns team.
Not only are the Chargers going to have to overcome injuries and a hard-nosed running attack to win this game, but they are going to have to overcome some members of the food chain as well.
The Athletic's Daniel Popper outlined pregame that FirstEnergy Stadium is swarming with bugs ahead of kickoff in Week 5. Popper got more clarification, and the bugs that are the same midges that infamously took over in the ALDS between the New York Yankees and Cleveland Guardians back in 2007.
The midges should not have as big of an impact on the Chargers as they did the Yankees and Guardians.
My baseball fans out there likely remember this game and remember just how infuriating it was to pitch in that game. Despite being nine years old at the time, I vividly remember Joba Chamberlain having to deal with the midges while on the mound and it did not seem very pleasant.
Football should be a little less impacted by these midges than the baseball players were. The Chargers have the luxury of wearing helmets, so they are not going to be dealing with these bugs flying in their eyes, ears and mouth as often as the Yankees and Guardians were.
Plus, football is much faster moving than baseball. There are a lot more opportunities for these midges to make their presence known in a sport where the athletes are standing around for at least 70% of the total game time.
At the end of the day, though, this is another interesting new wrinkle and it will be compelling to see if it has any sort of impact at all. Practical wisdom tells us that it should have more of an impact on the more-reliant passing offense (which would be the Chargers) but we are just going to have to wait and see.