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Game Preview: Chargers can reignite hope in ‘23 season with win against the Lions

Something very, very special may be happening on the Chargers defense. Can it carry over against a TOUGH Detroit Lions?

Los Angeles Chargers v New York Jets Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

The Chargers’ 2023 season has been a seesaw. They started with a 0-2 slide, won two games to put them at 2-2, lost two to drop them back to 2-4, before finally bouncing up in the standings to 4-4 with another pair of wins.

Down and up. Down and up. Down, and up again.

Now, they are set to face the Detroit Lions as 2.5-point underdogs, per DraftKings Sportsbook. DraftKings expects it to be a higher-scoring affair, with a 48.5-point over/under.

2023 Los Angeles Chargers...specifically, those of you on the defensive side of the ball... here is my open plea to you:

This is the week we need you to circle on your calendar. This is the week you break the cycle, and break away from the purgatory of clawing around a .500 record. This is the week where you can slam the brakes on a talented, ascending team, and show the league your defense has arrived. This could be the first week of the season the you all plant your flag as a legitimate Super Bowl contender.

Hop off the seesaw boys, and start rolling with momentum. A win against the gritty, talented, knee cap biting Detroit Lions would be your first three-win streak of the year. If you walk out of SoFi Stadium this week at 5-4, you’re walking away from a statement game with nothing but an open field of opportunity in front of you.

Eight sacks against the hapless Zach Wilson and the New York Jets is great... but what can you show us against a top offensive line unit? Can Joey Bosa and Morgan Fox schedule a meeting in the backfield with Jared Goff like this next week?

When Penei Sewell is road-grading for David Montgomery, can you all answer back with THIS kind of tenacity to bring down Goff and swing momentum back your way?!

OTITO, YOU’RE UP. One game back from almost a year-long absence, and you get yourself four pressures and three total tackles, and score the third highest PFF grade on defense? What are the odds you can keep it up, and we see some plays like this against Frank Ragnow, the second-highest paid center in the league?

You did ball out against one of the best last week Alohi, but Garrett Wilson is still mortal. This week, I want to see this kind of playmaking ability against the Sun God.

I’m begging this team to play the game we know they’re capable of playing this week. Of course the offense needs to pick it up, but in these last two weeks against weak opponents, this defense has flashed the potential to be the game-wrecking, top-tier unit we were promised when Brandon Staley was hired. I openly have questioned whether the team can carry this level of play against a physical and talented opponent, and the perfect test is the 2023 Detroit Lions.

Enough fighting to get back to .500, Chargers. This is your time to take your season back... and then we can all get back to celebrating together.