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By the numbers; a new begining

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Concudan, Nov 4, 2008.

  1. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

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    Most Charger fans look on the next game as just a continuation of the bye week. Other Charger fans correctly point out the truth following truth; with parody running rampant in the AFC these days, any team (even the Bengals) can beat any team on any given Sunday.

    While this may be frustrating to the fans of the three proclaimed power house teams of the AFC; the Chargers (3-5), the Colts (4-4) and the Patriots (5-3), there are some other teams fans that are ecstatic right now. Two teams that were supposed to be middle of the road to good teams this year have a choke hold on the conference half way through the season. The undefeated Titans (8-0) and the resilient Steelers (6-2) are tops in the conference.

    Those teams are in the driver’s seat halfway through the season and could lock up home field advantage in short order if they continue on their roll. However, good teams win in November and December. The elements start playing a bigger and bigger factor in games.

    The Chargers meet the Steelers in just two weeks, and the Chargers will be looking to get back in the hunt for the playoffs. They will have to be prepared for a hard fought game because the Steelers are for real.

    But let’s not look ahead, the Chargers host the Kansas City Chiefs this weekend, and have the opportunity to play their strengths to KC’s weaknesses. This game is probably the most important of the second half of the season, because it is this game that the Chargers need to win in order to bolster their faltering confidence and prove that the new Defensive Coordinator, Ron Rivera is the man for the job.

    Lets look at the numbers
    According to the stats published at sports.espn.go.com, here is the tale of the tape:

    Chargers on Offense
    The Chargers rank 12th overall, 7th in passing offense, 24th in rushing offense and the Chargers Quarterback Philip Rivers leads the league in passer rating at 107.8.

    Defensively The Chiefs rank 31st overall, 22nd in passing defense, dead last, 32nd in rushing defense.

    Now the Chargers have an opportunity to get the offensive game balanced here. The Chiefs will most likely not be stacking the box as much against LaDainian Tomlinson who is seemingly just hitting his stride now, after suffering a toe injury in the first game of the season. The Chargers can attack the Chief’s struggling run defense and get the running game back on track.

    However the way I suggest they should go about this is not the normal Charger method. Allow me to explain, in years past the Chargers would use the run to set up the pass. Hitting the holes in the line of scrimmage hard and forcing the opposing defensive units to put more bodies in the box and defend the run. This would allow the Chargers to drop a tight end or a wide receiver into the gap behind the front seven of the defense and the secondary and get good yardage. Then when the defense loosened up, they would get another dose of the Chargers running the ball down their throats. I tell you this worked like a charm because just a few short seasons ago the Chargers running back broke the record for touch downs scored in a season.

    However times change, and as expected so do teams. The reason I suggest the Chargers consider using the pass to set up the run now, is because we have lost a key blocker in Lorenzo Neal who the Chargers released in the past off season. While they did seem to find a diamond in the rough with their undrafted rookie full back, he is no Lo’neal yet. He has the potential but Lo’neal was a road grader who loves to pop the defenders.

    Therefore in my opinion the Chargers should loosen up the defense with the pass, and set the running game up for success. This would also send a message to the rest of the league that the Chargers are not down or out, as of yet!

    Chargers on Defense
    The Chiefs rank 26th overall, 28th in passing offense, 14th in rushing offense and the Chiefs Quarterback Tyler Thigpen ranks at the bottom of the league (32nd) in passer rating at 67.6.

    Defensively The Chargers rank 26th overall, dead last, 32nd in passing defense, and 15th in rushing defense.

    At a glance you would think that Thigpen has a chance of improving his numbers against the woeful Chargers pass defense. On some levels that is the case. The Chargers have not lived up to the pre season hype on the defensive side of the ball. Shut down corners have resembled cooking utensils that separate noodles from scalding water. Some of this was scheme; however the players have to take responsibility for this as well.

    The secondary in particular did not play with confidence; they did not play with aggression. During the bye week the Chargers fired Defensive Coordinator Ted Cottrell, replacing him with Ron Rivera.

    Now by most accounts the defensive players are rejuvenated and excited by the changes that Rivera is bringing to the defense. The word is that Rivera is much more vocal in practice and is working hard to get the energy back into the unit that led the league in take a ways just a season ago. This will be the unveiling of the new defense. We are supposed to see a defense scheme that attacks the quarterback. This will be their time to shine; they will either solidify Rivera and the future Defensive Coordinator, or hang an interim tag around his neck with all the fans.

    The Chargers match up well in the running game. The Chiefs leading rusher, Larry Johnson is suspended. There is no real indication when the Chiefs will get him back; my bet is not soon, I would be surprised if it is this season. The Chargers should be able to handle the running attack, and let’s face it, Thigpen is just what the doctor ordered for a defensive unit that needs some success to build confidence when heading into Three Rivers stadium to face the Steelers.

    I believe the Chargers will put heat on Thigpen behind an offensive line that has not played well this season. This will lead to the negative plays that the secondary won so many accolades for last season. If the Chargers can pressure Thigpen, make him move around in the pocket they will find success. To do this the defensive line of the Chargers will have to attack the gaps in the offensive line, and not try to go straight on and bull rush the offensive wall.

    I believe the Chargers will play a more aggressive defense and the D will rediscover its swagger one game at a time, starting with this one. I look for a Chargers victory. By all that is holly it had better be dominate, bruising, and an un-mitigating blowout victory!

    I predict Charger 30, KC 10.

    What is your prediction?
     
  2. BFISA

    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Nice take...I don't do predictions, but nice take jes the same :) :tup: :icon_toast:
     
  3. nflhof

    nflhof BoltTalker

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    I see a game where we start out well on the O side and then we finish strong on both sides of the ball and the Chargers win 35-10. Rivera will make a difference right away!
     
  4. HEXEDBOLT

    HEXEDBOLT Don't like it, lump it!!!

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    Good write up Conc and I agree the Chef's game is an important stepping stone starting the second season out. Win, and we can build on that.
     
  5. Gridreaper

    Gridreaper BoltTalker

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    ...I think Rivera might not show exactly what he's up to because of the impending Steeler game. He's going to have to do some NFC East style (Gnats & Philly) balls out, disguise your blitz stuff in that one. Against K.C. he'll do enough to win without showing his hand and the offense will do the same.

    San Diego 31 K.C. 13
     
  6. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

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    You make a good point. I think the second half, our secondary will be seen in the back field much more than we saw the first half of the season.

    It a new start. I think if the D steps up we can take 7 games out of the last 8. :abq1:

    Hope springs eternal as they say!
     
  7. nickelbolt

    nickelbolt Fuggedaboutit

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    The key to this game is RUNNING THE BALL. The Chiefs are the worst team in the league against the run. This is the best chance we have to fine tune the running game for the stretch "run".

    Why don't we just call it our Run to the Playoffs.

    Defense will be fine this week.

    Prediction: LT gets 150 yds. Rivers throws 2 TDs. Chargers win 38-10.
     
  8. Ride The Lightning

    Ride The Lightning Join the Dark Side, we have cookies.

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    Suits me just fine.
     
  9. Enormo

    Enormo BoltTalker

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    Let's see... how to make this interesting? Sorry, can't think of anything:

    1.) Get to QB
    On paper, putting up numbers in chunks is the only way KC can keep up with the Charger's offense. This will be a test of Rivera's scheme.

    2.) Don't get out-hustled
    In the trenches we've seen an outmatched KC rise to the occasion when playing the Bolts. This will be a test of Rivera's leadership.

    Sunday should be a good get-your-feet-wet outing for the defense under Rivera. Fortuitous. Even with lingering D troubles this should be a W for the Bolts.

    Bolts over KC 28-13
     
  10. Enormo

    Enormo BoltTalker

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    I think there's going to be ramp-up time for Rivera's full scheme. We might not see the full compliment of plays because their not ready to run the full compliment of plays.
     
  11. TheBeast

    TheBeast BoltTalker

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    Great Job Conc!

    The spot light is on Rivera this sunday against the Chiefs. It's a chief team that scored 26 points on a tough tampa bay defense with tyler thigpen leading the charge. We need to get the pressure. Jyles tucker had enough time during the bye week to recover from his injury. In the secondary it's no more excuses for antonio cromartie. He's OVERDUE. First 2 weeks he said he couldn't concentrate on the games because of his wife and kids in the texas area when the hurricane hit (which I understand). Now he has a hip problem which should've of healed during the bye week. On the offensive side we have a healed LT a healed Chambers and a healed Gates. This should add onto River's stellar play already, by creating the play action with LT and getting his star tight end antonio gates back at full health. Chambers should also help the already terrific performance in the recieving core. Not to mention Buster Davis healed. In coclusion, the bolts are going to be healthier than they have been in a long time. I see a blowout. Charger's 41-10.

    :abq2::abq2:
     
  12. SD Native WY

    SD Native WY Well-Known Member

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    My prediction for the San Diego Chargers / Kansas City Chiefs game is a surprisingly close game. For some reason when the Chargers play the Chiefs it doesn't seem to matter what the either teams records are and they both play to each others levels especially when they play in KC. I am glad that we are finally having a home game and hopefully this will help the team get back on track.

    The saying that well suits the Chargers at this point in the season and the KC game is, “This is the first day of the rest of their lives” . The Chargers need to play to their talent level and if they can I believe they are capable in beating any team in the league. If they can play one game at a time and win they can make the playoffs.

    The defense should be fired up about the coaching change and I am looking forward to a more aggressive rush which will hopefully make for more takeaways negative yards. The offense will continue to improve with injuries healing and Rivers playing as well as he has in previous games.

    Chargers 35
    Chiefs 21

    Great thread Concudan!!!!!!!!!

    :bolt::bolt::bolt: GO CHARGERS :bolt::bolt::bolt:
     

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