I am still calling them the San Diego Chargers so meet Richard Wade from our San Diego Chargers blog, Bolts From The Blue. I asked Richard five questions about Sunday’s Chiefs-Chargers game and he gave me some answers.
It seems like the Chargers have a lot of weapons on offense. How would you rank the top three?
BFTB: The Chargers' top weapon at this point in time has to be Melvin Gordon. He is an effective runner. He has solid receiving skills and is dangerous in the open field. And he has developed into a competent blocker when called upon to be one. Their second best weapon is Keenan Allen. He is one of the best route runners in the NFL and he can catch almost anything that Philip even gets close to him. Rounding out the top three has to be second-year tight end, Hunter Henry. He is a talented blocker and receiver, so his presence on the field does not tip the offense' intentions and he can get open against linebackers, corners and safeties.
The Eagles front seven gave the Chiefs some trouble last week. What can we expect out of the Chargers front seven?
BFTB: The Chargers are still figuring out their front seven under Gus Bradley. Bosa and Melvin Ingram are excellent pass rushers who will give every team they face all that they can handle. Jatavis Brown was born to play the Will, and Brandon Mebane is a tremendous 1-technique. Unfortunately, with Denzel Perryman out, they don't have a quality answer to who should play the Mike. Hayes Pullard and Korey Toomer are both very flawed players. Kyle Emanuel is very good against the run playing on the strong side of the formation, but he is an incredible liability in coverage. And lastly, the 3-technique role is now a competition between Darius Philon and Corey Liuget with Philon pushing to take the early-down work as of last week.
Is Joey Bosa still good? How have teams neutralized him?
BFTB: Bosa is still good. He's an amazing athlete. He has a great feel for the game. His hand usage is excellent. He is, however, the primary concern for every offense and so he is seeing frequent double or triple teams and teams are running right at him. He will have to adjust if he's going to prove to be the elite player we all still believe he can be.
The Chiefs took one back against the Chargers special teams last time. Do you expect that to happen again?
BFTB: I don't think so this time. The Chargers have added a few younger and much more athletic players that play on special teams, like Linebackers Nigel Harris and James Onwualu, and the coverage on both punts and kicks have looked pretty solid. Honestly, I think it's more likely that the Chiefs are able to get penetration and block a kick or punt than it is for the Chargers to give up a return.
What's your score prediction for the game?
BFTB: I like the Chiefs in this one with the Chargers making it look closer than it really was by scoring late to pull within three and not enough time remaining to do anything with the smaller deficit. 24-21, Chiefs over Chargers.