Keenan Allen is continuing his stellar rookie season. Despite only 30 receiving yards in the first three games, Allen is on pace for over 1,000 for the season. He has posted 100 yards in three of the last four games, as he makes a push for offensive rookie of the year. After losing Danario Alexander and Malcom Floyd early in the year, somebody at wide receiver had to step up. With Vincent Brown underwhelming and Eddie Royal being banged up Allen has really responded. His +7.8 PFF rating is tied with Dez Bryant for 12th overall among wideouts, and Philip Rivers has a 118.2 QB rating when targeting the rookie, higher than any other Bolts receiver. Tom Telesco knocked this third-round pick out of the park.
King Dunlap continued his fantastic season, after allowing only one QB hurry and had a good day run blocking as well. Even with missing a couple of games due to injury, he ranks 2nd among all offensive tackles with a +8.5 run block grade. Johnnie Troutman also had an excellent day run blocking, but allowing 3 hits and 4 hurries brought his overall grade down to -0.1.
In the criminally underused department, Ryan Mathews followed up consecutive 100 plus yard performances with 15 snaps and 7 carries. He averaged almost 5 yards per carry, and he didn't fumble, so why didn't the Chargers give him the ball? They really could have used his power running at the goal line at the end of the game, but, well, everybody knows about that. Also, the fact that you could count the number of Ladarius Green's snaps on Mickey Mouse's hand makes me very angry. Green has PFF's highest rating for a Chargers tight end in 2013 despite not even reaching 100 snaps. Meanwhile, Antonio Gates continues to get eaten alive in the ground game, possessing the NFL's 4th lowest run block grade at -8.7. Green can play tight end, slot receiver, or split out wide. He has the size and speed to be a mismatch for any defender and isn't a major liability blocking. So why does he spend so much time on the bench?
While Kendall Reyes continues to struggle (or continues to be misused), new Charger Lawrence Guy has been off to a solid start. He was responsible for batting the pass that lead to the Chargers first touchdown, and has a +3.3 grade in San Diego on only 23 snaps. A QB hurry and two batted passes in only 14 pass rushes will get you noticed in a hurry. He also blocked a field goal that caused a 92 yard drive by the Redskins to result in zero points. Jarret Johnson also had a great day, particularly against the run (+4.6 with 4 stops), but that is about the end of the good that the Bolts did on defense.
Derek Cox allowed 4 of his 5 targeted attempts to be completed for 78 yards before he was benched. Shareece Wright allowed 5 of 6 targets to be completed for 68 yards. Even Eric Weddle is struggling in coverage, as he allowed 4 of 4 targets for 46 yards. A lot of help is needed in this secondary, and this far into the season there is nowhere to turn.
Peek to Next Week:
Remember how bad I said that secondary was? Well here comes Peyton Manning, PFF's (and everyone else's) top QB for 2013 (+22.3). Wes Welker (+10.6) and Demaryius Thomas (+9.6) have been hard to handle. Former Charger Louis Vasquez is PFF's highest rated RG, considering he has allowed only 4 QB disruptions all season.
Von Miller has only been back for 2 games and he already has a sack, 5 hits, and 8 hurries. Combined with the fact that the players in the secondary that are supposed to cover receivers can actually, well, cover receivers, this could be a long day for San Diego.