The Los Angeles Chargers will go into 2020 without Phillip Rivers as the starter for the first time in over 15 years. While they underachieved in 2019 the Chargers roster is still one that is loaded with talent. Week 6 the Jets make their first of 3 west coast trips this year to play the Chargers in LA.
Coaching – Anthony Lynn enters his 4th year as head coach of the Chargers and after 2 good years at 21-11 they regressed to 5-11 in year 3. Lynn is the rare CEO head coach these days where he does not have a major hand in one side of the ball. Gus Bradley is the veteran DC on the Chargers who comes from the Pete Carroll tree running the highly touted Seattle cover 3 defense. Shane Steichen is in his first year as an OC in the NFL as he only had the job on an interim basis. The offense will likely look much different with Tyrod Taylor then it did with Phillip Rivers and implement more RPO’s and use Taylor’s legs more.Personnel – Tyrod Taylor looks poised to be the veteran starter as number 6 overall Justin Hebert looks to start the season as a backup. Taylor is a very conservative QB who rarely turns the ball over and is a very good athlete. He has the best skill group of his career around him. Keenan Allen and Mike Williams are in contention as the best 1-2 punch at receiver in the league. Austin Ekler proved to be one of the best dual threat backs in the league and Hunter Henry back fully healthy looks again like one of the NFL’s top tight ends.
The Chargers defense is loaded with talent. Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram are the best pass rushing duo in the league. They added All-Pro Chris Harris to their secondary that already included All-Pros Casey Heyward, Derwin James, and Desmond King. They have young ascending players like Jerry Tillery, Kenneth Murray, and Nasir Adderley who just add the scary amount of talent they have at all 3 levels.
Potential Weaknesses – The Chargers offensive line is bad like worse than the Jets bad. They are relying on veterans with injury history like Mike Pouncey, Trai Turner, and Bryan Bulaga to stay healthy all year and their left side of the line with Sam Tevi and Dan Feeney might be the worst in the league. With the Jets solid defensive line, it should really stunt the Chargers run game and limit the effectiveness of their play action which is crucial for the success of Tyrod Taylor.
Matchup with the Jets – I hate this game for the Jets. Adam Gase’s teams are horrendous on the road and this is the farthest they will have to travel for a game so far in his tenure. Bosa and Ingram are going to give the Jets offensive line fits as they can constantly get pressure without having to send more than 4 guys. When they blitz they have the talent in their secondary that no Jets receiver really troubles them in man coverage. This is going to be an ugly game where I think the Jets are going to struggle to put up more than 14 points in this game. The Jets are going to need to force some turnovers on the conservative Taylor and capitalize on short fields if they want to put the points necessary to win this game.