Aug 2, 2012; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers head coach Norv Turner watches over practice during training camp at Charger Park. Credit: Jake Roth-US PRESSWIRE
By Travis Duncan
"We have a great preseason schedule, because of Green Bay and their offense and their blitzing defense, " Chargers head coach Norv Turner said Wednesday just 24 hours prior to his team's first preseason matchup Thursday night against the Packers.
The Chargers and Packers likely would be a perfect test for one another in the preseason, but for health reasons on each squad's offensive line, we may not see either starting quarterback very much.
The Chargers would like to see if an improved defense can contain the likes of Aaron Rodgers and a flurry of talented Packers receivers. The Chargers can only hope they get at least a quarter of Rodgers and the Packers first-team offense to let them know where they are at as a defensive unit.
It's possible the Packers won't even play Rodgers because of a health issue on the left side of their offensive line with Packers left tackle Marshall Newhouse out with a concussion.
The Chargers also are wanting to see how their own offense executes with new receivers Robert Meachem and Eddie Royal and a healthy Antonio Gates.
Turner added, "playing Dallas which obviously is a very talented team and an outstanding offense, we go to Minnesota their a running football team with a great pass rush, there's a little something of everything. And then the last game the 49ers are one of the best defenses in the league and certainly run the ball."
But you might connect the dots with Turner's comments and realize he and his staff are most concerned about the offensive line and the ability to protect Philip Rivers.
Left tackle Jared Gaither has only practiced once this summer and undrafted free agent rookie Mike Harris is his replacement.
Gaither is out with back spasms and not a whole lot of info regarding his health status is being released by the team, as noted by the North County Times.
Meanwhile, the Chargers signed veteran offensive tackles Anthony Davis and Michael Toudouze to one-year contracts on Wednesday.
"I like the left side of our line," Turner said via the NCT. "We're fortunate that Mike Harris has come in and been impressive. Tyronne Green has been what you'd expect at left guard. They have an excellent pass rusher on that side in Mathews, although I'm not sure how long he's going to play."
"My primary goal is to get Philip some reps and keep him from getting hit."
Undrafted Free Agents To Watch For
Dan McLellan of CBSSports.com has five undrafted free agents players to watch for Thursday night who have a shot to make the 53-man roster.
CB Greg Gatson (Arkansas)
LT Mike Harris (UCLA)
RB Micheal Hayes (Houston)
QB Jarret Lee (LSU):
WR Mike Willie (Arizona State)
It's expected that Lee will get lots of playing time on Thursday night.