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Blitzing helps out in many ways

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Johnny Lightning, Sep 26, 2008.

  1. Johnny Lightning

    Johnny Lightning Go Bolts

    Feb 7, 2006
    September 26, 2008

    The Chargers had blitzed an average of 16.5 times in passing situations their first two games -- a blitz being defined as when more than four players or a player that was not on the line rushes the quarterback.

    They blitzed 18 times in passing situations Monday against the New York Jets. That's not too much more often.

    But they did bring five and six players more than they had. And the most important difference was in how they blitzed -- bringing Matt Wilhelm from the edge, Shaun Phillips and Marques Harris from the same side, showing blitz one way and then bringing it from another direction, blitzing Clinton Hart early and the inside linebackers often, showing blitz and then not blitzing

    "We just changed up what we were doing," coordinator Ted Cottrell said Thursday. "It was just different guys."

    The best move, I thought, was in blitzing Wilhelm and Derek Smith.

    It forced them to be aggressive taking on blockers (the Chargers run blitzed a half-dozen times, I believe). And it accomplished something else for the struggling Wilhelm, who had his best game Monday.

    "Matt is a very intelligent player, and he's just a workaholic as far as preparation and study; he wants to do well," Cottrell said. "He's got a big burden making the calls. I've found I can ease that if I send him now and then. That takes some of the burden off him. He can just go play."

    This aggressiveness will be tailored (not abandoned, just modified) Sunday against Oakland, which will run until it has no choice, and then run some more. But Tim Dobbins rotating with Wilhelm and Wilhelm being blitzed and Derek Smith fitting into the defense more every game, the ILB rotation could be coming around just in time for Stephen Cooper's return.

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