The San Diego Chargers need to play better as a team in 2012

By Kenny Gardner

The San Diego Chargers finished their 2011 NFL season with an 8-8 record after starting the year at 4-1.  San Diego went on a six game losing streak following their blistering start, and it cost them an opportunity to make the playoffs.  The Denver Broncos won the AFC West with an 8-8 record due to a tiebreaker scenario.  San Diego ranked sixth on offense last season, but Philip Rivers was tied for third with Rex Grossman for the most interceptions in the league with 20.

San Diego was a -7 in turnover differential, which made them the eighth worst team in this category.  San Diego was tied for last with the Oakland Raiders in forced fumbles with seven, but their interceptions were respectable as they were tied for 13th in this category with the Jacksonville Jaguars and Houston Texans.  San Diego put minimal pressure on quarterbacks as they were tied for 23rd with 32 team sacks and their run defense was ranked 20th in the NFL.  San Diego was tied for sixth as they gave up 15 plays of at least 20 rushing yards.

Rivers finished the last five games in 2011 with 11 touchdowns and only three interceptions.  San Diego added first round pick Melvin Ingram to help put pressure on quarterbacks, they added veteran outside linebacker Jarret Johnson in free agency, defensive tackle Kendall Reyes as well as strong safety Brandon Taylor in the draft to help with their run defense.  Rivers should cut down on his turnovers this season because the Chargers fixed their offensive line problems.  Ingram could be a nice addition with Antwan Barnes to get after quarterbacks and Johnson, Reyes and Taylor should bolster San Diego’s run defense.  The Lightning Bolts need this to happen for them to have a successful 2012 season.






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