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San Diego Chargers Daily Links: January 11, 2014

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Your daily dose of San Diego Chargers news & notes from around the web.

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Doug Pensinger

The All-22: How to beat the Broncos - Chris Burke
San Diego played its safeties well off the line, often in two-deep schemes. Utilizing that setup in combination with relatively loose man-to-man looks at the line dropped the Chargers into a rather soft shell — one that corralled Denver’s passing attack into about a 15-yard window. The San Diego D also opted to prevent those deep passes at the risk of Manning dumping the ball off in the flat or underneath.

Green making an impact for Chargers - Kirk Kenney
"Some of it was just a matter of him realizing what he was capable of," said Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers."Obviously, Gates has been great with him, and those two guys on the field together complement each other well."

Double Coverage: Chargers at Broncos - Jeff Legwold & Eric Williams
Veteran players emphasized this week that playoff opportunities are precious, noting the fact that the Chargers have not made the playoffs since 2009. So guys like Philip Rivers and Eric Weddle want to see how far they can take it.

3TFO: Chargers @ Broncos, Divisional Round - Trey Cunningham
Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, by far the best coverage defender on this unit, inexplicably allowed Allen to run free over the middle for that 19-yard TD, but otherwise only allowed an 8-yard catch in both games. Chris Harris has the second best coverage grade here and came away with a +0.8 coverage grade combined for both those games. Rahim Moore, the best coverage safety, hasn’t played since being injured in Week 11, leaving Mike Adams (-0.5 coverage on the year), Omar Bolden (-2.8), and Duke Ihenacho (-5.3) in a rotation.

PFF Playoff Pick'em: Divisional Round - Rick Drummond
Rivers is one of my favorite players to watch but this will be the last time we see him and the Chargers take the field this year. They did well for me last week with their win in Cincy, but here Peyton & Co. will put up 40 while San Diego just tries to stay in the frame. The Denver win on Sunday afternoon is the final piece to cement my ideal Final Four of Manning vs. Brady and San Francisco at Seattle.

Playoff Performance: The Quarterbacks - Gordon McGuinness
Yet, in a league that it is very much "What have you done for me lately?", Rivers is coming off the best playoff performance of his career in Sunday’s win in Cincinnati, where he completed four of the five passes he attempted beyond 10 yards. Heading into Sunday’s showdown with Manning in Denver, Chargers fans will have faith that Rivers can carry the team once again, with the Thursday Night Football win on the road against the Broncos serving as his third-highest grade of the year.

NFL Divisional Preview, Part 2 - Bill Barnwell
The Chargers won that game against the Broncos in December by seven points, but the 27-20 final score really undersold how well the Chargers played and how far the Broncos were from victory. Denver had a 77 percent chance of victory 12 minutes into the game, but after that, its win expectancy steadily fell with just minor corrections back in its favor along the way. The Chargers had a 73 percent shot at winning around halftime, were up in the 90s in the third quarter, and never fell below 85 percent in the fourth quarter.

AFC Divisional Round Preview - Scott Kacsmar
Despite these teams ranking seventh and eighth in variance, of all four games this weekend, I think this is the most volatile in terms of the range of outcomes. Denver may really regret that Week 15 performance where a win would have sent the Chargers to 6-8 and likely out of the playoffs. Like Dante from Clerks, the Chargers aren't even supposed to be here, but they can win this game. The 9.5-point spread is absurd for a San Diego team that's lost by that margin only once all season.