It might be easier to lament the Week 1 meltdown that has now been revealed an NFL officiating error for a bit longer, but the truth of the matter is the San Diego Chargers have bigger problems on their hands. Those issues come in the form of the high-flying Philadelphia Eagles and their breakneck paced offensive attack under new head coach Chip Kelly.
According U-T San Diego, the Bolts’ starting defensive line saw its heaviest workload across the board in Monday night’s collapse against the Houston Texans. Cam Thomas, Kendall Reyes, and Corey Liuget were all used extensively in the opener, and that was more due to a lack of depth behind those guys than anything else. The offense for the Chargers was largely responsible for the defense’s woes as Philip Rivers and company scored an opening touchdown in the second half only to completely bog down and gain just nine yards following that score.
When an offense gets zero first downs it has a tendency to really wear on a defensive unit, regardless of its conditioning level. And there is no break in sight as the game against the Eagles looms on the horizon. Philly ran a staggering 53 plays in the first half of their Monday night win prior to the Bolts taking the field for their contest.
In the game with Houston, the Chargers only had Jarius Wynn, newly acquired Sean Lissemore, and Kwame Geathers taking snaps in relief of the starting three up front defensively. That could certainly become problematic as the Eagles fly around the field and get the Bolts gassed during the course of their Week 2 matchup. Trying to catch Michael Vick, LeSean McCoy, and DeSean Jackson with a full tank is difficult enough, but attempting to chase them down when running on empty is another story entirely.
So after another debacle of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, the Chargers head back to the drawing board with some optimism as the prepare for Philadelphia. Cross-country games on with 1:00 PM ET start times have not been historically kind to the Bolts, but this is a new regime in charge of this team. Even though the results on Monday night looked eerily similar to the calamities of yesteryear, San Diego needs to turn the page on the past and get focused on the task at hand in Week 2.