Week 9 wasn’t the most enjoyable of weeks, for obvious reasons. Besides the loss, Joey Bosa missed the Raiders game with a concussion, Bryan Bulaga got knocked out with a back injury after playing just two snaps, and Justin Jackson missed all but three snaps after getting hurt early.
I wish I had some positives to give out, but it was just another one of those weeks in Chargers Land.
Here are the snap counts from Week 9 and my accompanying notes and thoughts.
- It took Bryan Bulaga just two snaps into the game on Sunday to go out with an injury. Trey Pipkins came in and played the rest of the way. This team seriously, seriously cannot get out of it’s own way when it comes to injuries. When they get a piece back, it usually doesn’t last long. Other times, they get a piece back and then they lose a different one. It’s getting outrageous at this point.
- Despite being the team’s leading rusher, Kalen Ballage second for snaps by a running back with 31 (39%) behind Joshua Kelley’s 43 (54%). Ballage finished with 69 rushing yards and a score to go with two catches for 15 yards. Kelley totaled just 28 yards on nine totes but caught all five of his targets for 31 yards.
- Keenan Allen had another great outing with nine catches for 103 yards and a score. He played all but one snap on Sunday evening, which makes it all the more confusing as to why he didn’t see a single target in the final three minutes. I mean, I understand the call to throw it up on the final two plays of regulation because look what you have out there, but you also have a top-3 route-runner in the league is also tall at 6’2. As an offensive coordinator, you have got to have some plays up your sleeve to get your best players the ball in the red zone.
- Jalen Guyton played 87% of the team’s offensive snaps but managed just one reception on two targets for nine yards. He was this close to hauling in another long bomb from Herbert but the ball was thrown just out of reach of his outstretched hands.
- Rookie Kenneth Murray played a season-low 26 snaps (52%) on Sunday. Anthony Lynn said after the game that Murray was taken out because they were having “communication” issues”. In his place, Denzel Perryman played 37 snaps (74%). Kyzir White led all linebackers with 44 snaps (88%).
- In a game where the Chargers needed to stop the run, Linval Joseph played 90% of the defensive snaps, the most by a player who didn’t play the entire game. Jerry Tillery was second in snaps for a defensive tackle with 82% of the snaps but he played a bunch at the base end spot in place of Joey Bosa who missed the game with a concussion. He recorded the team’s only sack.
- In a game where the team was missing their best pass rusher, the coaching staff decided to use their second-best edge player for just SIX SNAPS. That’s not a joke. Uchenna Nwosu, who is second on the team with 3.5 sacks, saw six snaps the entire game against a Raiders team missing both of their starting offensive tackles. Melvin Ingram played well, but there was almost not pass-rush or disruption at or behind the line of scrimmage. The defense recorded zero tackles-for-loss.
- Tevaughn Campbell once again held down slot duties as he played 74% of the snaps on defense. This is likely what we should expect until Chris Harris Jr. returns from an injury he sustained in the Panthers game.
- Michael Badgley missed another field goal on Sunday, bringing his totals to four missed field goals and two missed extra points. I don’t like the sound of a kicker carousel again, but when is enough going to be enough?