San Diego Chargers
The AFC West has a rematch of a Game that just happened two weekS ago when the Broncos lost at the Chargers, 21-13. This time the Game is in Denver. San Diego started a current two-Game winning streak with that win. The Broncos just snapped a two-Game losing streak that beGAn with the loss to the Chargers. Denver is a 5.5-point favorite, and the over/under for this Game is listed at 43.5 by the 5Dimes Sportsbook.
San Diego was only outGAined by 39 yards in the first matchup these two had this season. Phillip Rivers was held to a season-low 178 passing yards. Melvin Gordon, while rushing for 94 yards, only averaged 3.5 yards per carry.
Rivers is averaging just under 290 passing yards per Game. He’s also thrown 13 touchdowns and only Four interceptions. Tyrell Williams, Travis Benjamin and Hunter Henry are the most reliable targets for the passing attack in San Diego. Those three combined for just 128 receiving yards and a touchdown in the first matchup. That’s 60 yards below their average per Game.
The Denver defense is largely superb. They are allowing an NFL third-best 291.6 yards per Game. They are giving up the fewest passing yards per Game (175.0) in the league. The only phase of defense that they have not been good in is the running Game. There, the Broncos are allowing 116.6 yards per Game. For the Chargers to have any success they will have to have Gordon put on one of his better performances of the 2016 season to this point.
The real success story for San Diego’s defense in the first Game between these two was holding every receiver to 40 yards or less and 10.3 yards per catch or less throughout the Game. Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas, Denver’s top two receivers, were held to 40 and 35 receiving yards, respectively.
The Chargers were fortunate to have that good of a defensive performance in the first Game as they are averaging giving up 276.3 passing yards and 366.4 total yards per Game on the season. It is difficult to imagine them having the same success as they head to Denver.
Trevor Siemian is throwing the ball for just over 200 yards per Game and has thrown eight touchdowns and three interceptions. In his last Four Games, Siemian has thrown seven TDs and no interceptions.
C.J. Anderson and Devontae Booker have been a good duo in the backfield. They’ve rushed for a combined average of 97.3 yards per Game and have totaled five rushing TDs thus far. San Diego has been much better against the run than the pass, so it’s not likely for them to allow much more than this.
The Game switching location should be significant. The Broncos defense will give almost every opponent difficulties. I tend to believe San Diego will find some points, but I have a hard time believing they will slow down Denver’s receivers as much as they did the first go-around. Broncos -4.5