Week 9 Gameday Focus for San Diego Chargers: Contain Robert Griffin III
Ah, it’s the mobile quarterback conundrum again. After facing off with Michael Vick’s Philadelphia Eagles in Week 2 and Jake Locker’s Tennessee Titans in Week 3, the quota for running QBs was clearly already met for the San Diego Chargers. Unfortunately the NFL schedule makers didn’t see it that way, so the Bolts will head on the road again to face another of the league’s dynamic two-way threats.
Robert Griffin III had a quiet start to the 2013 campaign, and that may have been the expectation given the fact that he was recovering from reconstructive knee surgery back in January. But now the Washington Redskins‘ signal caller is rounding into form. It may seem like last week’s performance against the Denver Broncos was a step backward, but RG3 had his team in position to win the game going into the fourth quarter; he can’t play defense.
In Weeks 6 and 7, RG3 was back to being the run-pass threat fans had come to know from last season. His showing in Week 6 of 246 passing yards and 77 rushing yards was impressive enough, but he backed it up with an even more jaw-dropping 298 yards through the air and 84 on the ground in the following contest. Those are the types of outings the Chargers must prevent from happening this Sunday.
As mentioned earlier, the Bolts have been somewhat successful against mobile quarterbacks this season. Vick threw for a staggering 428 yards against San Diego, but his paltry 23 rushing yards kept the ground game in check. In the following game Locker was able to exploit both areas of the defense with 299 yards passing along with 68 yards rushing on just five carries. The crushing blow from Locker were the critical times when he would scramble to pick up first downs and keep drives alive for Tennessee which ultimately led to the Bolts’ demise.
So now another trip to the Eastern Time zone for the Chargers with a 1 p.m. start time will try once again to derail the momentum the team has built up in recent weeks. This defense is much better than the one the Bolts put on the field in their previous endeavors with mobile quarterbacks so the separate issues experienced in both games should be eliminated. In fact, the Bolts haven’t given up a touchdown in 10 straight quarters heading into Sunday’s tilt in Washington which shows just how dominant this unit has been of late.
RG3 may have gotten dinged up in last week’s game, but don’t look for that to deter him in this meeting with the Chargers. This could be another tight game with a back-and-forth battle between both teams with the offense holding the ball last getting the victory. Don’t be surprised if the San Diego defense rises to the challenge in the crucial moments this weekend to keep the winning streak alive.
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