After a game like that, especially one that went so poorly the franchise decided to fire both the head coach and general manager, it’s hard to care about any individual performance. I get it, but we’re going to look at the numbers anyway. Mainly because it was another eye-opening performance (in a bad way) for one of the team’s top stars.
Let’s go ahead and dive in, shall we?
Best (min. 20 snaps played)
RB Isaiah Spiller - 75.1
WR Joshua Palmer - 71.0
OT Rashawn Slater - 70.5
C Will Clapp - 68.7
WR Jalen Guyton - 66.7
Spiller led the Chargers in rushing for the first time in his career with 50 yards on 16 carries. That wasn’t a very efficient effort (31. YPC) but he showed a much better feel for his lanes when given the chance. I’m not sure how the remainder of the year will play out, but players will be fighting for their jobs the next few weeks and it’ll be interesting to see if Spiller’s opportunities continue to rise going forward.
Palmer had one of the best games of his career but it was unfortunately in a lopsided and losing effort. He finished with 113 yards and a touchdown, most of which came on a 79-yard score in which the defense forgot to cover him.
Continuing to see Slater remain atop the offensive grades will always be encouraging as those around him continue to falter.
OG Zion Johnson - 42.6
OT Trey Pipkins - 45.2
TE Nick Vannett - 52.3
C Brenden Jaimes - 56.2
OG Jamaree Salyer - 57.2
The entire offensive line aside from Rashawn Slater landed amongst the worst-graded Chargers who played against the Raiders on Thursday night. That’s a terrible thing to see yet somehow it’s just par for the course after everything that happened following that game. If you add in Vannett who was used mainly as an extension of the offensive line, then it just adds to the horrid performance.
Pipkins and Johnson have each regressed over the past year in terms of both their play and their discipline. Each have season grades amongst the 50s and have seven and six penalties, respectively. That’s good for second (tied with Michael Davis) and fourth on the team.
There’s a chance they stay put on the offensive line this offseason due to the youth and potential for improvement under a new staff, but I also wouldn’t be surprised to see multiple new starters up front in 2024.
EDGE Khalil Mack - 83.4
CB Asante Samuel Jr. - 72.8
DT Austin Johnson - 71.1
CB Essang Bassey - 66.8
EDGE Tuli Tuipulotu - 65.7
Mack led the entire team with his 83.4 overall game grade. He totaled five pressures but once again couldn’t come away with at least half of a sack to hit 100 for his carer. Tuli was second in the team with three pressures but somehow failed to record even one tackle.
Johnson had one of his better games of the year in both the run game and as a pass rusher. He record two pressures and ended tied for second on the team with six total tackles.
EDGE Justin Hollins - 35.2
S Derwin James - 36.8
S Alohi Gilman - 50.1
LB Kenneth Murray - 51.4
DT Scott Matlock - 54.3
I don’t know what’s happening to James, but this has been the worst two-game stretch of his entire career. His overall game grade against the Broncos a week ago was his worst single grade and his latest grade is almost as bad. Maybe it’s all the penalties (he leads the team with eight) and he’s lost what uber confidence he used to have in himself, but he’s been an afterthought on this defense as far as difference-makers go. It’s essentially been Khalil Mack or no one in recent weeks.
Seeing other starters Gilman and Murray is a tough look but they weren’t nearly as bad. It was a tough game for everyone. This was a “burn the tape” type of game.