Injuries are a part of life in the NFL, but the San Diego Chargers are sinking due to theirs (and other issues), as a very good Philip Rivers season, at least statistically, is going down the drain.
The Chargers fall to 2-7 after losing in the final minutes to the Chicago Bears 22-19. It’s their fifth consecutive loss, all of them coming by less than 8 points. Rivers said that the team is failing at executing in the final minutes, making the wrong plays, making the wrong decisions. This isn’t a 2-7 team; they’re not as bad as the Detroit Lions, Cleveland Browns, Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars. But at some point, just like the Baltimore Ravens, it really doesn’t matter why they’re doing so poorly.
The season is over? One might say that you should never give up, and the Chargers can possibly got on a wild ride and finish 9-7. When every game is so close (just like for the Ravens), it’s a matter of luck sometimes, isn’t it? And luck, at some point, changes, right?
But the NFL doesn’t work like that. Rivers might be heading towards his best season in terms of numbers, with 3033 yards through the first nine games, throwing 19 touchdowns and 7 interceptions, completing 69% of his passes and posting a 100.7 passer rating. But this isn’t about just what the quarterback is doing, which is going against what a lot of people who watch the NFL believe. The Chargers are failing at pretty much everything else.
Giving up 27.7 points per game is a punishable offense, even with an offense that does OK. They’re doing a poor job of getting to the quarterback and generating turnovers (just nine through the first nine games). Protecting Rivers has also been a problem, as always. The fact that he’s getting to put up so many yards is a wonder considering what’s left of his obliterated offensive line. In the tradition of a Baseball team with one good slugger and nothing else, or a Mike Leach football team, this looks like a great season for Rivers, but an awful one for the Chargers. Luck has nothing to do with it.