Progress: Comparing the 2011 San Diego Chargers to the 2010 San Diego Chargers

We know that after 5 games the San Diego Chargers are 4-1, a step up from their usual 2-3 under Norv Turner. However, do we really know how much better this year's team has been as opposed to those 2-3 squads? I want to do a comparison of more than just records, using this year's team against last year's team that finished 9-7.

 

Points Scored
2010:
140
2011: 120

Points Allowed
2010:
106
2011: 109

It would only make sense that the Chargers, with all of the red zone troubles without Antonio Gates this season, would've scored more points in 2010. What's a little shocking is that the defense hasn't seemed to change much, despite new personnel and a new Defensive Coordinator.

Turnover Margin
2010:
-2
2011: -5

Sacks Allowed
2010:
11
2011: 13

Sacks
2010: 18
2011: 8

Let's stop for a second. The 2011 Chargers have scored less points, allowed more points, forced less turnovers, turned the ball over more, sacked less and allowed more sacks than the 2010 Chargers. Is that right? That can't be right. It feels like I'm cherry-picking stats here, but I'm not. Let's try a few more.

First Downs
2010:
122
2011: 128

YAY! Finally one that goes in 2011's favor. Although, that number could be inflated with the 2011 Bolts having less big plays and more long drives.

Passing Yards
2010: 1,689
2011: 1,467

Rushing Yards
2010:
620
2011: 614

 

I'm getting tired of this. The 2010 Chargers were obviously better than the 2011 Chargers through the first 5 games of the season. Here's why they lost 3 games over that stretch instead of 1:

Chiefs: The Chargers allowed 30 yards per punt return to Javier Arenas and Dexter McCluster, allowed McCluster to score a TD.

Seahawks: Leon Washington averaged 63 yards per kick return, scoring 2 return TDs.

Raiders: Mike Scifres had two punts blocked (one for a Safety, one for a TD), Philip Rivers lost two fumbles, Mike Tolbert lost a fumble and the Chargers defense forced zero turnovers.

 

Your Chargers MVP through the first 5 games is apparently Rich Bisaccia, who has not only fixed the issues with the return game but also turned Nick Novak into a FG-kicking robot, and not Ryan Mathews. BFTB apologizes for any earlier confusion.

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