Danny Lee Jesus Fluker
I know D.J. Fluker the Guard only played about three quarters so far this season, but I loved all three of those quarters.
Not only was Fluker excellent at pass protection when he didn't have to worry about moving his feet backwards to catch the speed rushers, but what he did in run blocking is considered illegal in much of the world.
Orlando Franklin and Joe Barksdale have not lived up to expectations, Chris Watt has been underwhelming, and Chris Hairston would like to forget this season already. This offensive line needs Fluker, and Fluker seems just healthy enough to come back and play Guard (although maybe not healthy enough to come back and play Tackle, which adds just one most reason on the list of reasons that Fluker is better suited at Guard than Tackle).
If Fluker plays on Sunday and is at least 80% healthy, this offensive line is good enough to win games. Speaking of...
Any Given Sunday
Here's the thing about the San Diego Chargers: They have a ton of offensive weapons. Let's just list the healthy (and talented) ones that will probably see the field on Sunday:
- Philip Rivers
- Keenan Allen
- Malcom Floyd
- Stevie Johnson
- Melvin Gordon
- Danny Woodhead
- Branden Oliver
If the offensive line plays somewhere above "decent", this Chargers team should be putting up 30 or so points on offense each week. That's usually enough to win.
Sign me up as a big fan of Teddy Bridgewater. I like the kid's arm, I like his escapability, and I like his intelligence. He'll be a fine starting QB one day.
However, right now, Teddy is still very young and working in an offense that kills young QBs if they don't get massive amounts of protection. He can be beaten with pressure.
Seems pretty obvious how they shut him down. How did the Lions fare?
They blitzed more often (percentage-wise) with a lot less success. When they didn't blitz, things got a lot worse.
Luckily, we know, the Lions defense is crap. The 49ers defense? Not so much. Also, the Chargers hybrid with a 3-4 base is more in line with what San Francisco runs, so that's hopeful!
Simply put, the Chargers have to confuse Bridgewater while blitzing the hell out of him. This worked out wonderfully against Matthew Stafford two weeks ago, so I expect to see a similar gameplan in Minnesota on Sunday.