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Chargers Fan

Why Defensive Injuries will keep Chargers out of Playoffs. posted by Chargers Fan

The chargers have the highest percentage of touchdowns allowed in the Red Zone in the NFL. That is not a playoff caliber team. That means not only are the Chargers giving up points, they are letting offenses sustain drives, which eats up clock, energy, and manpower. The Chargers can make the playoffs, but that means they have to be good again on defense, and that starts with getting healthy.

But the Chargers have the bye week to regroup and assess it’s gaping holes on defense. It shouldn’t be too hard as the Chargers, as late as five games into the season, where dominating on the defensive side of the ball. The rushed the passer, stuffed the run, had take-aways, and shut receivers down.

In fact, they led the NFL is scoring defense. They man handled Arizona, left the defending Super Bowl champs in the dust, and had their way with the Buffalo Bills as they notched a shut-out, the definition of a complete defensive performance.

But that only worked because the Chargers had youthful speed and depth to constantly rotate in and keep offenses on their heels. Rookie Jerry Attaochu is able to speed around tackles and get to the quarterback in no time. Rookie Jason Verrett with a sub 4.4 40 speed can keep up with any receiver in the league but also has the bulk to come up and stuff the run from the outside. Manti Te’o’s ability to read the line allows him to fill running gaps better than anyone in the league.

But all of that talent is of no use when all of the players sit watching the games from the sidelines for long periods of time.

Continue reading "Why Defensive Injuries will keep ..."

Dolphins Fan

What Lamar Miller’s Injury means for the Dolphin run game posted by Dolphins Fan

If you thought the Miami Dolphins were in dire straits at the running back position when they lost Knowshon Moreno with a season ending injury, things got even worse when Lamar Miller left the San Diego game with an injury.

This is a make or break moment for the Dolphins as they will have to dig deep into their roster for production on the ground.

Miami has struggled this year but the one lone bright spot has been their run game, averaging almost 130 yards a game. It was a constant, and a point of stability for an otherwise struggling offense. Moreno and Miller work a great one, two duo.

Miller was having a breakout season, setting a career high in rushing touchdowns when he got his third in Week 6 against the Packers. He averaged more than five yards per carry in three of the first four games and ran for a career-best 108 yards on 15 carries in Week 3 against the Chiefs. 

The fourth round pick was on pace for 200 carries and more than 1,000 yards, both of which would be career highs. But now with both of these work horses out, the odds of maintaining that level of production is quite unlikely.

 So now the offense falls on the arm of quarterback, Ryan Tannehill. He hasn’t been electric but now he will to step up. If there was ever a moment to solidify oneself as the framchise quarterback for this team, the quarterback to build a team around for years and years to come, this is that moment.

If Tannehill can navigate the rest of this season relatively unscathed, he will get amazing on the job training in shouldering an entire offense. He will build the confidence of his teammates that

Continue reading "What Lamar Miller’s Injury means ..."


Lions Fan

Why the Lions cannot overlook the Dolphins. posted by Lions Fan

With a restful bye-week, the Lions square off against the Miami. The Dolphins, many people may not think so, but are a very dangerous team, most recently showcased by their 37-0 route of the San Diego Chargers last week.

Ryan Tannehill is a highly accurate quarterback who can shred defenses with a barrage of crossing routes or beat you with his legs. Something the Lions need to game plan for.

Now the Lions have an excellent run defense and they will needto be more eye disciplined than ever as Tannehill runs read-options. They must stay on their assignments, linebackers and defensive ends must be disciplined and not overrun their assignments as they follow the ball through the mesh point so that Tannehill doesn’t slip out of the pocket and gash them with chunk yardage on the ground, which while is devastating from a yardage stabd point, is also demoralizing when a quarterback is eating up yardage on the ground.

On the other side of the ball, the Dolphins have a great pash rush and Lions’ right tackle Waddle will need to play his very best in order to give Stafford time to get the ball out to their playmakers.

One way to combat an effective pass rush are quick screens and short hot routes. Something the Lions naturally do well, so look to them to start their tempo with high percentage, quick release passes.

This is in no way a ‘gimme’ win for Detriot and they will need to play their very best if they stand a chance to win. Odds makers only have them favored by a few points so it’s going to be a dog fight. Hopefully with the returning healthy starters back in the line up, it will give the Lions offense a much needed boost.

Continue reading "Why the Lions cannot overlook the Dolphins."


Chargers Fan

The 2014 San Diego Chargers posted by Chargers Fan

The San Diego Chargers were able to sneak in the postseason with a 9-7 record last year. Quarterback Philip Rivers looked like a goner before the start of the 2013 season as he had a career-low 6.8 YPA while surrendering 16 interceptions. But he was able to turn things around with the improved offensive line of the Chargers.

The Chargers have baffled many by their poor blocking in years. With the signing of King Dunlap last year as well as the drafting of D.J. Fluker, the Chargers were able to improve their offensive line. Fluker played well in his rookie year while Dunlap was a key acquisition surrendering only three sacks the past year.

The Chargers also boast of two solid interior linemen in Chad Rinehart and Nick Hardwick. Pedestrian Jeromey Clary will be challenged by rookie Chris Watt at right guard, and this would only improve the offense of the Chargers.

Rivers will also be looking to throw to sophomore Keenan Allen who compiled 71 receptions, eight touchdowns and 1,046 yards in his rookie season.  But Allen is pretty much what the Chargers have at receiver as Malcom Floyd is coming off an injury and Vincent Brown remains a project.

The Chargers defense has a lot of holes to be filled. The team was 23rd in the league in yards allowed, 29th in pass defense, and 27th in rush defense. But the defense should improve this year with the return of Melvin Ingram. The best pass-rusher in the team, Ingram was out for the first part of the season with a torn ACL.

But the Chargers’ defensive front and linebackers will also need to perform well if the team hopes to book a second straight playoff appearance.

Continue reading "The 2014 San Diego Chargers"


Joe Anello

Black Monday 2012: The Aftermath posted by Joe Anello

Black Monday was billed to be one of the worst/busiest in the NFL’s history, and it certainly lived up to that hype on the eve of the New Year. A whopping seven head coaches were fired on Monday, with a few fates to be possibly determined at a later date. Included in the dismissals were a number of general managers. Let’s wrap around the league!

Philadelphia Eagles fire HC Andy Reid

Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie made a difficult decision in letting go his franchise’s winningest head coach, but it was the right one. Reid’s message had been lost in the later of his 14 years on the job. He’s still a fantastic head coach, but it was time for everyone to move. Reid could land somewhere like Arizona, but we’ve already heard that San Diego won’t be interested. Philly sounds like its leaning towards a coach with legitimate experience that can come in and quickly turn things around. This firing was probably a year too late, to be fair.

Chicago Bears fire HC Lovie Smith

Check back for an in-depth analysis of this coaching move. 

San Diego Chargers fire GM A.J. Smith and HC Norv Turner

Speaking of firings a year too late, this pair of “winners” shouldn’t have been allowed to be on the San Diego staff for 2012. Turner’s already being mentioned as a possible OC for a number of openings, the most notable of which is in NY for the Jets. But he’s likely rebuffed them already, per the Jets’ usual. Smith was a volatile front office guy, something that should have gotten him canned years ago. He let most of this team’s “immense talent” fall by the wayside or leave via free agency.

Continue reading "Black Monday 2012: The Aftermath"


Joe Anello

The Opening Drive: Week 16, 2012 posted by Joe Anello

Week 16 in the NFL season has arrived! With two weeks left in the season, I don’t need to tell you how important these games are for those teams still in the hunt. It’s time to get into all the storylines in The Opening Drive!

(12-2) Atlanta Falcons at

(4-10) Detroit Lions

Saturday night football has arrived! And it’s… relatively meaningless. The Falcons are very close to locking down their one seed (only need one win) and the Lions could be another embarrassing loss away from blowing things up. This could be an entertaining (but non-competitive) contest to open the week.

(6-8) New Orleans Saints at

(8-6) Dallas Cowboys

I’ve already seen a LOT of coverage for this game, which only features one possible playoff participant. The Cowboys can win the division if they win their final two games, and that starts with an interesting match-up against the Saints. Drew Brees won’t take it light on a Dallas secondary that has been hit-or-miss this year. But I think the Saint defense won’t play as well as it appeared to last week versus the Bucs.

(5-9) San Diego Chargers at

(6-8) New York Jets

Wait. There has to be a reason I put this game on the list. THE GREG MCELROY ERA HAS BEGUN! But honestly, I don’t know if any of the Jets’ quarterbacks will be on the roster next season. And the Chargers? They’re a train wreck. AND I LOVE IT.

Continue reading "The Opening Drive: Week 16, 2012"


Joe Anello

The Opening Drive: Week 12, 2012 posted by Joe Anello

With Thanksgiving taking up time with travel, family, and friends, I decided to forgo the now-typical Thursday posting of The Opening Drive. But don’t worry, week 12 in the NFL still has a few games worth checking out this weekend!

(6-4) Seattle Seahawks at

(4-6) Miami Dolphins

Wait, am I liking Seattle on the road? That’s a switch. Miami’s been disappointing in its last few outings, so another loss essentially eliminates them from the postseason picture. If Seattle can pound on Miami’s front seven with Marshawn Lynch, Russell will likely see his receivers in single coverage on the outside against lesser corners. That’s a recipe for success.

(9-1) Atlanta Falcons at

(6-4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Game of the day. Tampa Bay’s offense has been nearly dominant as of late, and they’re matching up against an Atlanta defense that can’t halt the run with any regularity. Doug Martin could be in line for a ridiculously awesome fantasy stat line today. Get him in your starting line-up. I really like the Bucs are home here.

(8-2) Baltimore Ravens at

(4-6) San Diego Chargers

I appreciate everyone thinking the Ravens are weak enough that they could travel across the country to San Diego... after a Sunday night game… against the always physical Steelers… and lose. Wait, I may have just talked myself into taking the Chargers. Wait, I’m taking the Chargers? Screw that noise. They’re terrible.

Continue reading "The Opening Drive: Week 12, 2012"


Joe Anello

The Final Drive: Week 8, 2012 posted by Joe Anello

Week eight in the NFL brought disaster upon several supposed contenders and cleared up the divisional pictures.  A few days late or not, we can’t have a week go by without an edition of The Final Drive!

(3-4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers 36

(5-3) Minnesota Vikings 17

I guess the Vikings aren’t ready to be contenders just yet. Falling at home against a team on short rest and traveling for a Thursday night game? Thursday nights are built for the home team to get a win, but the Vikings failed to produce points. I put most of that on Christian Ponder, who honestly just looked terrible. Credit the Buccaneers for never taking their foot off the gas in this one, especially when there were several opportunities to lose the momentum.

(2-6) Cleveland Browns 7

(3-4) San Diego Chargers 6

Wow. San Diego only managed to put up two field goals against a team that has severe scoring issues. So yeah, I’d say Norv Turner’s job is in trouble. But where have I heard that before? Anyways, Cleveland really looks like a team that could be a legitimate contender in a few years if they stay on this track. Good for them.

(3-4) Detroit Lions 28

(4-4) Seattle Seahawks 24

Somehow Seattle’s defense took Calvin Johnson completely out of the game but let Titus Young and Brandon Pettigrew wreck them. The fact that those two pass-catchers stepped-up like they did gives more weight toward their possible development. Matthew Stafford had an outstanding game through the air, even managing to outshine Russell Wilson’s best game of the year. While the offensive signs should be encouraging for Seattle fans, the loss is still painful.

Continue reading "The Final Drive: Week 8, 2012"


Joe Anello

Reid and Turner back for 2012: Really? posted by Joe Anello

Black Monday came and went, but the coaching news continued on Tuesday with releases in Chicago and major retentions in San Diego and Philly. Were they the right moves? Let’s break ‘em down!

 

San Diego Chargers retain General Manager A.J. Smith and Head Coach Norv Turner

OH COME ON!!! I was finally ready to break-up the Turner/Philips romance. However, you can chalk up this stay of execution to a few select reasons. First, key players (i.e. Rivers) probably bitched enough to convince management that it would cause chemistry issues to change coaches. Second, who were they going to get that was even marginally better? Turner’s still got swagger when it comes to his offense, so I’m not sure who was out there (that would come to San Diego) that would be a marked improvement. Maybe Cowher or Gruden if they got extraordinarily lucky, but I’m sure they were rejected outright on those fronts. Finally, it’s the AFC West. A couple plays would have made the difference in getting the Chargers to the playoffs, so they don’t need to improve much to get there next year.

Right Call?

Fudge no. I’m sure team President Dean Spanos thought it’d easier to improve with continuity than an overhaul. I don’t care. I still think both of these guys needed to be put down. I’m still shocked they have their jobs. You let me down Dean.

 

Continue reading "Reid and Turner back for 2012: Really?"


Joe Anello

The Final Drive: Week 17, 2011-12 posted by Joe Anello

The 2011 NFL regular season ended with a bang with some great finishes and superb drama on Sunday. Records were set by a back-up QB, a team captain was benched for “quitting” and a fat-handed QB lost missed out on the post-season. The Final Drive must begin!

(15-1) Green Bay Packers 45
(10-6) Detroit Lions 41

This makes me beyond furious. Mike McCarthy takes out his MVP quarterback and starts a fourth year back-up with one career start in Matt Flynn, and f*cking records are broken. Six touchdowns? 480 yards? Who wouldn’t want to be Matt Flynn right now? That guy is about to make BANK as a free agent. Blow me Green Bay. Take your awesome quarterback development and blow me.

 

(6-10) Miami Dolphins 19
(8-8) New York Jets 17
Mark Sanchez: 3 interceptions. Santonio Holmes: benched and called out as a whiny quitter by his teammates.  (Seriously. Worst team captain ever.) Bart Scott: flips off a photographer and refuses to talk to the media (For once). Finally seeing theses loathsome Jets miss the playoffs is SO satisfying to me. Take it Rex Ryan. Take it hard.

(8-8) Philadelphia Eagles 34
(5-11) Washington Redskins 10

I don’t give a crap about the result of this game. What I do care about is DeSean Jackson deciding to actually play like he means it and be remorseful for his completely idiotic actions this season in the last game of the year. I’d be surprised (not stunned though) if the Eagles kept Jackson around. Maybe franchise him and get him on a one-year deal, but you would have thought he’d have been on better behavior once he showed up to 2011.

Continue reading "The Final Drive: Week 17, 2011-12"

San Diego Chargers News

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Ex-rugby League star Hayne leaves NFL, aims for Olympics (Yahoo Sports)

[read full article]

From Yahoo Sports


Chargers rookie Joey Bosa back in his element (Yahoo Sports)

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From Yahoo Sports


Ex-NFL receiver Reche Caldwell in running for worst criminal ever (Shutdown Corner)

Reche Caldwell was a fair-to-middling NFL wide receiver. But as a criminal, he was truly awful. In a lengthy takeout feature , ESPN has detailed the strange crime spree that followed Caldwell's career in the league for seven years. Let's just say that he might not have been special on the field, but he certainly was better at that than he was trying to break the law. Although Caldwell's post college peak came when he became Tom Brady's most trusted receiver on the 2006 New England Patriots, it was one of the least-talented groups Brady ever threw to —and yet that team still almost made the Super Bowl that year. But it was Caldwell and his two key drops in the AFC championship game loss to the Indianapolis Colts, who went on to win the Super Bowl, that defined his career. A season later, after wallowing with the Washington Redskins, Caldwell was out of the NFL. From there, he went back to Tampa, where he grew up and was still revered to a degree, and opened a not-so-secret gambling ring. Caldwell got in deep, and soon the word got out that he and a large crew of his pals were betting on —among other things —NFL games. Perhaps the fact that it was stationed right near an elementary school wasn't the brightest of ideas in the first place, or the fact that Caldwell parked his bright red jeep out front almost daily. "I see now, yup, not the greatest location for that kind of thing," Caldwell said with a chuckle. "Too big, too fast. I laugh at my stuff too. What else can you do? I have to laugh. I really thought I was some kind of a criminal? All I know is, everyone kept telling me, 'The police don't care about this stuff, you'll never get caught,' and the next thing I know I'm headed to prison, saying goodbye to my kids, wondering: 'What happened to me?'" Caldwell and his buddies got sloppy and soon started taking bets from undercover cops. As Caldwell was watching his former team, the San Diego Chargers, beat the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2013 postseason, the betting parlor was being raided and Caldwell detained, a half-eaten sandwich ripped from his hand and the front door flattened by a tank. One day you're catching touchdowns from Brady. The next you're being interrogated by a bitter FBI agent with a Boston accent. "You're that guy who cost Tommy anudda Soupa Bowl," Caldwell said, doing his best impression before turning serious. "What else can I do? It's not like I was trying to drop those passes." After being released, Caldwell clearly was undaunted. He was busted again —this time for searching "MDMA-Molly-China" on the internet, ordering what he assumed were illegal drugs, having almost five pounds of the stuff shipped to his door, tracking the package online and then signing his real name for it when it arrived. Naturally, a SWAT team was lying in wait. Once more, Caldwell had been pinched. He thought: "Aw, man, not again." But yes, Caldwell was sent to prison for that, too. And he's serving a 27-month sentence, which his attorney said looked like it actually caused relief in his client when he was sentenced. After all, crime wasn't paying off too well. Caldwell's mother agreed. "Good lord that boy was a bad criminal," she said, "and thank Jesus for that." He's now telling his story and sounds like a man who realized his many missteps. Caldwell is eligible to be moved to a Tampa-based work-release facility, where he can be closer to his son and perhaps celebrate his little brother's Super Bowl victory as a member of the Denver Broncos back in February (Andre Caldwell is now with the Detroit Lions). "I'm not gonna blame football or concussions like everybody else for my mistakes," Reche said. "I don't blame my education or my hometown or my family. I have a great family. I had a great childhood. I grew up in a great place. This is about losing my way, being around bad people and making bad choices, and that's all on me." - - - - - - - Eric Edholm is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at edholm@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Eric_Edholm [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports


Chargers take J.J. Watt's brother, Derek, in 6th round (Yahoo Sports)

J.J. Watt and Melvin Gordon had the same message to Derek Watt: Welcome to the NFL, bro. The San Diego Chargers used a sixth-round pick to select Derek Watt, the Wisconsin fullback who is J.J.'s younger brother and Gordon's former blocker with the Badgers. Derek Watt will be reunited with Gordon, who is eager to forget the disappointment of his rookie season with the Chargers. [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports


2016 NFL draft grades for Rounds 2-3 (Shutdown Corner)

CHICAGO  –  The Jags look scary. Jerry Jones gambled, as only he can. And there was a surprise at what quarterbacks heard their names called on Friday night. Oh, and someone traded UP to get a kicker. Here are knee-jerk reactions and grades for Day 2 of the NFL draft, which featured Rounds 2 and 3. Round 2 1. Cleveland Browns: DE Emmanuel Ogbah – A big, talented rush end who might stand up in the Browns’ 3-4 defense or bulk up and play the end spot. A bit of a curious pick given that uncertainty, but Ogbah is athletic and has a track record of getting to the QB. Grade: C+ 2. Tennessee Titans: DE Kevin Dodd – Pass rusher run! Dodd was one of our favorites, Shutdown Corner’s No. 14 overall player, and he has a chance to be a very good pro after breaking out last season and residing in the shadow of Shaq Lawson until the national title game. Dodd can play on his feet, has great length and is ascending. The Titans needed front-seven help. A nice start to their second day. Grade: A- 3. Dallas Cowboys: LB Jaylon Smith – Giddy up! Smith is a clear top-10 talent whose questionable knee caused forced him off some teams’ boards. But the Cowboys were willing to gamble on potential greatness here, and their team doctor performed the surgery on Smith after his Fiesta Bowl injury, so there’s a level of comfort there. Smith could be a star in this defense, either as a weakside or a middle linebacker. Figure on 2016 being a wash. This risk is significant; the payoff could be huge. Grade: C+. 4. San Diego Chargers: TE Hunter Henry  – This was about as easy a pick to mock in Round 2 as there might have been. The Chargers liked what they saw in the good receiving tight end, who reminds some of Greg Olsen and could be a natural replacement for Ladarius Green this year and Antonio Gates in 2017. Henry is not a great blocker but he can stretch the seam. Grade: B- 5. Jacksonville Jaguars: LB Myles Jack   – What a coup. We mocked Jack to the Jaguars for months before the injury news on his knee seemed to worsen by the day. But to trade up and score Shutdown Corner's fifth-rated player here — in addition to landing our best talent, Jalen Ramsey, on Day 1 — could be an incredible, once-a-decade type of coup. Even if Jack plays only five good years, it’s worth it. Grade: A 6. Kansas City Chiefs: DT Chris Jones – Jones has great potential, but he’s young and raw, and has some bust qualities to his game. Some weeks he looks great, others less so. But he could play almost any spot on the Chiefs’ front and could help immediately replace Mike DeVito up front. Grade: B- 7. Miami Dolphiins: CB Xavien Howard  – A later riser in the draft process who has the big frame the Dolphins are seeking at such a big need of a position. Howard was sneaky good last season and might be a good fit if he’s used correctly. He’s a very physical, grabby corner, which can work against him. Grade: C+ 8. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: DL Noah Spence – The Bucs wanted to come out of this draft with a pass rusher, and they got one. Spence has bent over backward for teams to show he does not have a problem after his multiple failed drug tests at Ohio State before he was kicked out of the Big Ten. Spence lacks bulk and can be run at, but he has great pass-rush feel and talent. Grade: A- [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports

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