At this point in the season, the game preview is almost meaningless. The San Diego Chargers, a team on a serious decline and with more than a few important injuries, match up against the Jacksonville Jaguars, a team that may or may not be on the rise, in front of a national TV audience tonight. Most Chargers fans, at this point, are hoping that the Jaguars are a good enough team to beat the Bolts.
If San Diego can pull out the loss tonight, here are the only teams in the league that would have a worst record (and therefore, better draft positioning):
Indianapolis Colts (0-12)
Minnesota Vikings (2-10)
St. Louis Rams (2-10)
They would be tied with six other teams that have a 4-8 record, giving them a pretty decent shot at getting the 4th overall draft pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Despite dealing with a Chargers-like rash of injuries, the Jaguars defense is 4th in the league in yards allowed and 5th in points allowed. Defensive Coordinator has been named the Interim Head Coach for this reason, and his defense should be fired up in support of him tonight.
The name of the game for the Chargers' offense is touchdowns instead of field goals. While San Diego ranks 6th in the league in offensive yardage, they are a very average 15th in terms of scoring points and 29th in turnover margin this season.
The Jaguars aren't too different from the Denver Broncos team that beat San Diego last week. Their +1 turnover margin (13th in the league) and 118.7 rushing yards per game (12th) keeps them in games despite having the worst passing offense in the league. Blaine Gabbert has struggled against teams that can bring pressure against him, so we'll have to see if Greg Manusky's bunch can both stop the run and make Gabbert run for his life.