As the Denver Broncos prepare for their first showdown of 2019 against the Chargers, I chat with Tyler Schoon of Bolt Beat to get his takes on the opponent.
With the Denver Broncos set to face their second divisional opponent in five games, the Los Angeles Chargers have been up and down for the most part of the 2019 season. They currently sit at 2-2. If the Denver Broncos are going to have a successful season, the first order of business is to get the first win of the season.
They have a solid chance against the Chargers. It is always tough to predict divisional games. And the Broncos are no strangers to close wins against the teams in the division. This could be a chance to pull off the upset, especially since the Broncos and Chargers are so familiar with each other.
Hopefully a win is on the menu tonight. But that is why they play the game. Can;t wait until this afternoon for some Broncos football. With the Broncos taking on the Chargers, I chat with Tyler Schoon, the site expert from Bolt Beat, and get his takes on the Los Angeles Chargers.
PO: At the quarter mark of the 2019 season, what has stood out to you the most in Los Angeles’ season?
BB: If there’s anything that stands out about this season, it’s the injuries. If the Chargers were two or three players healthier, they would be 4-0. Losing a Pro-Bowl left tackle, an All-Pro safety, and an All-Pro special teams player so early is frustrating.
The good news: Many are expected to return, and the depth players have been getting meaningful reps. The bad news: The Chargers have already lost two games, and it looks like the Patriots and Chiefs aren’t planning on losing more than four this year.
PO: Is the Chargers fan base excited about Melvin Gordon returning to the team?
BB: While Gordon was holding out, fans seemed to sour a bit on their running back of many years. From social media games (likes, retweets, cryptic photos) to just simply refusing to come in, Gordon and his agents were wearing thin on a Chargers fan base hoping for a Super Bowl run this year.
However, as soon as he was announced to return, it felt like the majority of fans were just happy to have him back. The best thing that could have happened for Gordon is the temporary loss of Justin Jackson, as the former’s return makes it easier to handle the loss of the latter. What fans are most cautious about is how the coaches will use Gordon, or rather, not use Austin Ekeler, who has been sensational thus far.
This game won’t feature too much Gordon, but their next meeting may see a more even split between the two.
PO: Denver will be the first divisional opponent the Chargers face this season. What will it take to get a win on Sunday?
BB: It’s going to take consistency. That sounds boring, and it’s just the old, “Play for four quarters,” adage, but it’s true, particularly with the Denver Broncos. When was the last time the Chargers swept the Broncos in the regular season?
Looking back, the Chargers haven’t won two games in a row against the Broncos since 2011. Last year, the Chargers blew a 19-7 lead at home, a game that would inevitably cost them the AFC West crown and a first-round bye. The Chargers have lost two games this year while holding a lead entering the third quarter.
PO: With how open the AFC is this season, can the Chargers sneak into the postseason and why?
BB: The Chargers can sneak into the postseason because there really aren’t any other powerhouse teams outside of the Patriots and Chiefs. In terms of schedule, the Chargers have been incredibly fortunate.
No Andrew Luck, no Ben Roethlisberger, no Bradley Chubb, potentially no Mitch Trubisky or Nick Foles (some would say those are good things for the opposing team), etc. One of the more dangerous teams they’ll face, the Vikings, will feature Kirk Cousins in a prime time game, which he is historically terrible in.
The Chargers will get their key pieces back at the right time to make a postseason run. Unfortunately, I don’t believe they will make it as the No. 1 or No.2 seed.
PO: What is one player on the Chargers roster that not a lot of fans know about that can be a factor on Sunday?
BB: The Chargers may call on rookie undrafted free agent wide receiver Andre Patton to help move the chains on Sunday. With Travis Benjamin and Mike Williams limited, and Dontrelle Inman headed to injured reserve,
Philip Rivers may have no choice. Keenan Allen has been on a tear to start the season, but Rivers will be baited into mistakes if he continues to target him so frequently.
Thank You Tyler for taking the time out to chat with me. If you want to see my interview with Bolt Beat, you can check it out here.