The Los Angeles Chargers narrowly came away with a win on the road at the Cleveland Browns. There were a few changes in personnel for this game that weren’t injury related that need pointing out. So let’s dive into it.
6th round rookie Jamaree Salyer gets his second career start and played all 71 offensive snaps for a second week in a row. He didn’t grade out as well as he did vs the Texans, however Salyer still played way above expectations this week, as did the rest of the line, giving up only 2 QB hits, no sacks, and paving the way to 238 yards on the ground.
Tight End Donald Parham started getting worked back into the mix slowly with only 25% of the snaps. And those snaps were spaced out as there were multiple times he wasn’t in the goal to go packages he would normally be ideal for.
Michael Bandy saw only 5 snaps at WR this week, likely due to the Chargers wanting to feature the run game this week and Jason Moore is so much bigger they likely wanted him out there blocking out wide.
The big, non-injury, change we saw on offense this week was at runningback. Joshua Kelley got 27 snaps while Sony Michel only saw the field for 2 snaps. The staff was obviously rewarding Kelley for his recent performances and going with the hot hand. This was a positive sign in my opinion and makes me wonder if Isaiah Spiller’s debut might be approaching.
The other big non-injury playing time change was on defense at safety. Alohi Gilman got the start and played 100% of the snaps at safety opposite Derwin James. Nasir Adderley had not been playing up to an acceptable level and the staff made the decision that Gilman had earned a chance to show he could do a better job. In a small sample size, he did. He was second on the team with 7 tackles and basically sealed the game with a goal line interception that was a fantastic play all around.
Speaking of Adderley, with Gilman taking the starting role, and not needing to play dime much this week, Adderley only saw the field for 6 snaps on defense. It will be interesting to see how he responds to this change and if he is able to make the improvements needed to get back into the starting lineup.
Jerry Tillery received the least amount of snaps of the defensive tackles, and it was likely due to the desire to stop the run this week. While Jerry can flash some pass rush, his biggest weakness has always been vs the run game and his playing percentage shows the coaching staff also sees it that way.
With Dustin Hopkins out with an injury, Taylor Bertolet was in at Kicker this week for the Chargers. After being signed off the street mid week, Bertolet was perfect on the day making all 6 of his kicks, 3 extra points and 3 field goals. Bertolet was awarded a game ball for his efforts.
Michael Davis didn’t play a single snap on defense again, however he did manage to get a tackle on special teams during his team leading 21 special teams snaps.