The good news: Grade wise the Charger’s O-Line enjoyed their best week of the season.
The bad news: There’s a whole mess of strings attached to that fact.
The Chargers again found themselves in a hole due to four first half turnovers, and despite a good showing from the defense found themselves down three scores. This led to an almost exclusive diet of passing from Norv. To counter this, New England went into a lot of dime and nickel prevent, often rushing only three defenders. With only a handful of blitzes to worry about, the O-line was able to protect play after play.
Amongst all this, there were legitimate concerns. Chiefly is the play of Louis Vasquez. While improving on last week’s sub-par performance, Vasquez did look better but is still struggling with many aspects of his game. His change of direction and acceleration still seem to be hampered by his injury. He was slow on his pulls and struggled in space. On a good note his pass pro looked much better than last week.
Marcus McNeill is still rusty. Though he probably grades out higher than last week, I thought he played slightly worse. He gave up some one on one pressures and was not solid at all in the run game. He did show many flashes of regaining form though, and one has to think that every week he should get better.
Nick Hardwick, Kris Dielman, and Jeromey Clary all had excellent games. Dielman by far was the O-Line POG, registering many big hits and pancakes. His double team work was good and his pass pro was the best I’ve seen in a long time. Clary had no major mistakes and played well throughout. During the 4th quarter comeback, he absolutely owned the right edge.
The breakdown this week is shy on notes, because there wasn’t much to note. Once the Pats got a big lead it was pretty boring stuff.
On one last happy note, we ran a draw play to Sproles which picked up six yards and converted a first down. Follow the link after the jump and enjoy.