We all had to wait a long time to see what this team had planned both offensively and defensively die to the lack of media availability and preseason exhibition games. On Sunday, we finally got a glimpse of what the offense looks like and which players were going to be in which packages/formations on either side of the ball.
Here are the team’s snap counts, starting offense, defense, and then special teams.
(Note: The first number is the snap count, first percentage is of offensive/defensive snaps, second percentage is special teams snaps.)
- All five offensive lineman who started Sunday’s game played 100% percent of the snaps in week one. That. Is. INCREDIBLE. With all the bad luck that position group has gotten over the years, I never thought I’d be able to type out that opening sentence.
- Austin Ekeler only played on 68% of the team’s offensive snaps which may be a cause for concern. However, he still touched the ball 20 times, including a rare 19 carries. Anthony Lynn mentioned in Monday’s Zoom call that him and the offensive staff will prioritize getting Ekeler more designed looks in the passing game going forward. The current offense, which now includes more play action and designed rollouts, limits the chances for checkdowns to the backs. So expect the coaches to make a few changes before the next game.
Jalen Guyton played 64% of the team’s offensive snaps, which was far-and-away the most by a receiver not named Keenan Allen and Mike Williams. The next receiver in total snaps was K.J. Hill, who played just 12 and didn’t record a catch. I don’t think those snap shares will change all that much from this week to next, but if Guyton fails to perform better with each week, Hill may end up leapfrogging him on the depth chart.
- After all of the Justin Jones hype, the guy in the interior of the defense most likely to see a breakout season could be Jerry Tillery. Jones played almost twice as many snaps as Tillery but both finished with same amount of tackles (2), yet TIllery was able to get home with half the opportunities. This isn’t a good start for Jones, who didn’t record a sack all of last season in 12 starts.
- Nick Vigil got all of the snaps left behind after Drue Tranquill went down with an ankle injury. It remains to be seen if he’ll start there against the Chiefs, however. Lynn mentioned they were considering all options to fill that void at WILL.
- Both Hayward and Harris Jr., along with Rayshawn Jenkins, played 100% of the defensive snaps in this one. So now we know that King is definitely going to see less snaps and he’ll likely continue to rotate in with Nasir Adderley at one of the safety positions.
- Denzel Perryman played only 12 snaps but he made one of the biggest plays of the day when he forced the first Joe Mixon fumble in over 621 touches for the young running back. I’m sure they started Perryman off slow with his playing time but I could really see his snaps take a bump with the loss of Tranquill combined with his early splash play.
- As I expected, guys like Emeke Egbule and rookie safety Alohi Gilman are going to be key special teams players for the Chargers. Uchenna Nwosu (76%) and Kyzir White (52%) are also seeing plenty of time on kick coverages.
- Brandon Facyson also looks to be the only defensive back who won’t be seeing snaps on defense on a weekly basis. He also played the most special teams snaps of any player for the Chargers.