COSTA MESA, Calif. — The Los Angeles Chargers received their final 4 video games of the 2020 season however misplaced too many nail-biters earlier than then to do any actual harm, as they completed 7-9.
Additionally they broke in a brand new quarterback in Justin Herbert after Tyrod Taylor by accident had his lung punctured earlier than their Week 2 recreation with the Kansas City Chiefs. No person knew what to anticipate. Besides possibly Herbert, who labored as lengthy and exhausting as he might, albeit just about. His teammates did not know what to anticipate besides to hope and roll with it.
Herbert wasn’t excellent, making errors on reads and footwork, and he tended to slip an excessive amount of — one thing he is reminded of each day — however he says he shall be a lot better this season. His teammates love him, with a dozen flying into Eugene, Oregon, to play in his charity golf match, and clearly the camaraderie is there.
Throw in some new, extremely regarded offensive linemen and a brand new, younger, vivacious teaching employees and what extra do you want? That is the mindset as coaching camp will get underway July 28. So are the Chargers higher, worse or the identical heading into 2021?
Here is a take a look at the offense.
Losses: Tyrod Taylor (Houston Texans)
Returners: Justin Herbert, Easton Stick
Higher, worse or the identical: Higher
Herbert proved so much his rookie 12 months, profitable Offensive Rookie of the 12 months, setting an NFL rookie document with 31 landing passes (whereas speeding for 5 extra) and falling simply 38 yards wanting passing Andrew Luck’s rookie document of 4,374 passing yards. He has been working extraordinarily exhausting studying one other new offensive system, which he says is comparable apart from the terminology.
Daniel performed in a Joe Lombardi-led system in New Orleans from 2009 to 2012 and has been a beneficial asset for Herbert. Stick additionally gives management, having been within the system, and may very well be relegated to the observe squad.
What stays to be seen is whether or not Herbert realized sufficient within the offseason to get the Chargers over the hump in shut video games and the way a lot he has superior.
Additions: Larry Rountree III (sixth-round draft alternative)
Higher, worse or the identical: Higher (with Ekeler absolutely wholesome)
Ekeler is wholesome after lacking six video games final season and is a menace on the bottom and within the passing recreation. Kelley and Jackson additionally return, however it’s unlikely the Chargers will hold 4 tailbacks. With Rountree projected as a short-yardage, punch-it-in man, it is uncertain Kelley and Jackson will each return. My cash’s on Kelley and Rountree, but it surely needs to be an amazing battle for No. 2.
Higher, worse or the identical: Higher, with Allen the star
Allen bought his cash final summer time and proved himself as certainly one of, if not the, finest receivers within the league. He is additionally a fairly good golfer (apart from placing) and sure suits properly with Palmer, who has stable arms and pace. And you then add in Williams who, at 6-foot-5, is a pleasant goal for anybody. Lombardi likes to make use of varied gamers in numerous positions. Guyton and Johnson supplied deep threats final 12 months and may play that function once more.
Higher, worse or the identical: Worse
Henry was an enormous loss. There was some perception the Chargers ought to have franchised him once more — he is that good when wholesome. However Invoice Belichick acknowledged that early, too, and scooped him up. It is going to create an enormous gap for the Chargers. Nevertheless, they bought Cook dinner, a productive veteran who additionally is aware of Lombardi’s offense from his time with the Saints, they usually have Parham and the rookie McKitty, whose blocking and measurement are main pluses.
Additions: Corey Linsley (Green Bay Packers), Matt Feiler (Pittsburgh Steelers), Oday Aboushi (Lions), Rashawn Slater (first-round draft choose), Brenden Jaimes (fifth-round draft choose), Darius Harper
Higher, worse or the identical: Higher
The Chargers could not have performed a lot better this offseason in bettering their line, particularly with how a lot it struggled final season. Linsley was costly however was an All-Professional final season, and Slater was thought-about the perfect left sort out/guard obtainable by many scouts. Bulaga will man proper sort out, with Slater taking part in left sort out. Including in Feiler and Aboushi at guard will make this line infinitely higher.