While Sunday’s outcome wasn’t what we’d all prefer, it also doesn’t matter in the long run. But as prideful fans, we’ll take any kind of bragging rights that we can get, right?
The second-team offense didn’t look half bad with Easton Stick at the helm. The third-team offense, while being conducted by Chase Daniel, was almost too painful to watch.
As for the defense, the second team handled their business against both Jimmy Garoppolo and Trey Lance, picking off both passers via tipped passers. However, the third-team defense allowed two scores from Lance which ultimately was the difference in the contest.
Oh well. Doesn’t matter. Moving on.
In a follow up to our roundtable we posted prior to the game, Matthew, Garrett, and I recapped our thoughts on the players we highlighted as “players to watch” against the 49ers while sharing our thoughts on their most-recent performance.
Michael Peterson: Well, my offensive player I was excited to watch against the 49ers was tight end Donald Parham and he ended up not suiting up which sort’ve killed the whole point of this. In his place, rookie Tre’ McKitty and Stephen Anderson led the way for a shallow position group on Sunday night.
Both McKitty and Anderson recorded catches of seven yards while Matt Sokol and Hunter Kampmoyer each finished with zero touches.
Defensively, I wanted to see how cornerback KJ Sails would perform in his limited snaps so soon after joining the team. Unfortunately, he didn’t record any statistics during his 15 snaps received on defense. In general, he did not allow any big plays and was relatively invisible which is both good and bad depending on how you view that a fact when playing corner.
Matthew Stanley: I said I wanted to watch the RB group, specifically Justin Jackson and Josh Kelley. Well, Jackson was out and Kelley didn’t really do much to help himself. Before I dive into the rest of this, I will caveat everything here with the fact that the offensive line performed very poorly as a whole last night. He finished with nine yards on seven carries, which included a seven-yard run....take that out and his other eight attempts netted two yards....not great. He did have two receptions for 12 yards, but overall, he didn’t have enough success to plant a flag on the depth chart. The only real help he got was the fact that neither of the other two running backs, Larry Rountree and Darius Bradwell excelled either. Bradwell had two carries for 11 yards and four catches for nine yards, while Rountree had 12 yards on eight carries and 15 yards on four catches. They did perform better than Kelley but nobody had a banner night in any way.
On defense I wanted to watch Mark Webb. He played 50 percent of the defensive snaps and secured two tackles (a third coming on special teams). It was an up-and-down game for Webb. He showed some of the instincts and ability that led the Chargers to make him their last pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, but you also saw some of the limitations that kept him from being a higher pick. There were some also some miscommunication issues between him and other players that comes from a rookie who has missed some practice playing for the first time in a live game. Thankfully he wont be needed to start week one.
Garrett Sisti: In the second half, Brenden Jaimes was one of the standouts for the Chargers offensively but unfortunately that’s not saying much. He led the charge on a Bradwell run at the end of the third quarter that led to a first down and did his job in pass protection. With the way the backup tackles looked maybe the Chargers need to explore if the former Huskers tackle can hang outside too, because if either starting tackles goes down, they’ll need help. Another quiet but solid performance from the rookie.
In just three snaps, linebacker Amen Ogbongbemiga almost had an interception and subsequently suffered a sprained AC joint on the play. It was a short night for the UDFA but the rookie Nick Niemann came in and was all over the place. Outside of some communication issues with safety Mark Webb which led to a big gain and then later a touchdown to Sanu on the same drive, Niemann was impressive. For the second game in a row he led the team in tackles.