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Merriman quietly forcing action

Discussion in 'American Football' started by Johnny Lightning, Nov 16, 2007.

  1. Johnny Lightning

    Johnny Lightning Go Bolts

    Feb 7, 2006
    By Kevin Acee

    November 16, 2007

    <!-- BODYTEXT -->While teams have been running their offense away from him and scheming their blocks to keep him away from the quarterback, Shawne Merriman is quietly having a much better season than most people realize.
    “I think I'm having my best season,” he said recently.
    While he has just 5½ sacks, well off the pace that saw him get a league-high 17 in just 12 games last season, Merriman is forcing action. He hurried Peyton Manning into two of his six interceptions this past Sunday.
    He has 59 tackles, according to coaches' statistics, just seven fewer than all of last season. While tackles can be a vastly overrated statistic, Merriman has a team-high six tackles behind the line of scrimmage and another six at the line. In all, 34 of his 44 tackles (as tallied by STATS Inc.) have been 3 yards or fewer downfield.
    First things first

    The Chargers rank last in the NFL in first-down efficiency, gaining 4 yards or more on just 39.7 percent of their 229 first-down plays. Worse in some ways, they average 8.26 yards to go on second down, 24th in the league. The real issue, then is not so much their inability to sustain drives. The bottom line is that they can't start drives well enough to sustain them.
    While the Chargers rank 21st in third-down conversions (38.5 percent), they are actually pretty decent on third-and-long (33 percent, tied for seventh.) The problem is too many third-and-longs are due to those meager gains on first down.
    Injury updates

    It appears everyone except center Nick Hardwick will be healthy enough to face Jacksonville on Sunday.
    “He was all right,” coach Norv Turner said of Hardwick's practice yesterday. “I don't know . . . when he'll be ready. But it looks to me like it's a ways off.”
    Hardwick has not played since spraining his foot Oct. 14 and just returned to practice Wednesday.
    Cornerback Quentin Jammer (hamstring) worked the entire practice yesterday after working just a half-dozen plays in team drills Wednesday.
    “He's going to be able to play,” Turner said. “It's a matter of how much he's able to play.”
    Also missing practice were defensive end Jacques Cesaire (toe), linebackers Marques Harris (toe) and Merriman (ankle), and safety Eric Weddle (knee).
    All are expected to practice today. Weddle is most at risk of missing the game. “When a young player has a limited amount of practice,” Turner said, “it's hard to expect him to go play well. But Eric is a sharp guy.”
  2. wrbanwal

    wrbanwal Well-Known Member

    Dec 27, 2005
    wow, that first down stat sticks out the most

    gotta fix that

    We have the players, let's get this thing done!!

  3. Retired Catholic

    Retired Catholic BoltTalker

    Aug 3, 2006
    I would think that a first down, first play, play action just might help a wee tad.
  4. 400HZ

    400HZ BoltTalker

    Aug 7, 2007
    Could it be because we try and run up the middle on every single ****ing first down?

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