The San Diego Chargers had a nice first year under Mike McCoy, as they went 9-7 and made it to the plays, beating Cincy before losing to the Broncos by just 7 points. The Chargers have a tougher schedule this year, but still have the talent to make it back to the playoffs. Vegas odds currently have the Chargers at +650 to win the AFC West and +5000 to win the 2015 Super Bowl. Let’s take a quick look at the San Diego Chargers, along with their 2014 Schedule.
Last year the Chargers offense was ranked 12th in scoring, at 24.8 ppg, while also ranking 5th in total yards (393.3 ypg), 4th in passing (270.5 ypg) and 13th in rushing (122.8 ypg). Philip Rivers had a very nice bounce back year under the guidance of Mike McCoy, who fixed some of Philips mechanics, while also giving him more freedom at the line of scrimmage. I would only expect rivers have a year that is just as good, or even better than last year. Rivers #1 target was rookie Keenen Allen, who caught 71 passes for 1086 yards, but beyond Allen there isn’t much to get excited about at WR. Malcom Floyd could be if he comes back strong following a neck injury, but Vincent Brown hasn’t progressed as they had hoped, while Antonio Gates continues to decline. Rivers did have two solid weapons to go to last year in TE Ladarius Green (77 catches) and Danny Woodhead (76), so there is a solid core to build around. A big reason for Rivers’ resurgence was an improve OL that got a bit better with the drafting of OG Chris Wyatt from Notre Dame. This again has a chance to be a very good offense, especially if Ryan Mathews can have another solid year and if Malcom Floyd is healthy again
Defensively the Chargers ranked 21st in points allowed (21.8 ppg), 23rd in yards allowed (366.5 ypg), 29th vs the pass (258.7 ypg) and 12th vs the run (107.8 ypg). The biggest area of concern for San Diego was a secondary that was not very good last year, ranking 29th vs the pass. The Chargers used their first pick in the draft to take CB Jason Verrett from TCU. He is a bit undersized, but still he will help this unit out allot. The Bolts also helped add depth to a solid LB corps by drafting OLB Jeremiah Attaochu (Georgia Tech) and then the line got some help with 5th round pick NT Ryan Carrethers. Melvin Ingram and Dwight Freeny give the Chargers a solid pass rush, while the secondary should be much improved. The Chargers are also in the second year of Mike McCoy’s systems, so I will look for them to have a better year overall than last year.
Philip Rivers had a great year last year and he may have a better one this time around. McCoy has really resurrected his career and kept him from making many of the mistakes he had under Turner. Behind him is a solid running game with Mathews and Woodhead, plus depth was added with the drafting of Marion Grice. The WR Corps will be steady, while the OL could be one of the best in the league. Defensively, the chargers will be much improved, especially in the secondary and that makes them a pretty complete team. Still they have the 4th toughest schedule in the league and that should keep them from posting more than the 9 wins they had last year. I will call for a 9-7 year and an outside shot at a return trip to the playoffs.
2014 San Diego Chargers Schedule
Sept. 8 at Arizona Cardinals (Mon), 10:20
Sept. 14 Seattle Seahawks, 4:05
Sept. 21 at Buffalo Bills, 1
Sept. 28 Jacksonville Jaguars, 4:05
Oct. 5 New York Jets, 4:25
Oct. 12 at Oakland Raiders, 4:05
Oct. 19 Kansas City Chiefs, 4:05
Oct. 23 at Denver Broncos (Thu), 8:25
Nov. 2 at Miami Dolphins, 1
Nov. 9 BYE
Nov. 16 Oakland Raiders, 4:05
Nov. 23 St. Louis Rams, 4:05
Nov. 30 at Baltimore Ravens, 1
Dec. 7 New England Patriots, 8:30*
Dec. 14 Denver Broncos, 4:05
Dec. 20 at San Francisco 49ers (Sat), TBD
Dec. 28 at Kansas City Chiefs, 1
Info Gathered From CBS Sports & Walter Sports
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