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By: Michael Peterson
Keenan Allen and Mike Williams headline the best of the best for the Chargers against the Titans.
Just like in Week One against the Dolphins, the Chargers offense did a lot of good things against the Titans this week. Unfortunately, it did not amount to enough as the defense allowed ill-timed splash plays and couldn’t come through in the most pivotal moments.
So while the defense didn’t allow a franchise record in yards or anything like that, they still were the squeaky wheel for the Chargers in yet another loss.
Below are the best and worst grades for the Chargers from their season opener inside SoFi Stadium.
Best (min. 20 snaps played)
WR Keenan Allen – 80.7
TE Gerald Everett – 79.3
WR Mike Williams – 73.4
QB Justin Herbert – 71.1
OT Trey Pipkins – 70.5
No surprise to see the Justin Herbert and his top pass catchers sitting atop this week’s best game grades. Allen had over 100 yards and a pair of touchdowns to make him the offense’s top-graded player in Week Two. Everett caught a couple passes and fought like hell afterwards for additional yards. He amped up fans and his teammates, alike. Williams made his own fair share of plays to help move the Chargers down the field as he tied Allen with eight receptions on the day.
Herbert bounced back from Week One to throw for 305 yards and two touchdowns. This is what we expected.
Pipkins landing as the teams highest-graded offensive lineman is a bit of a surprised as he allowed one of the team’s three sacks. Rashawn Slater graded just below him and allowed zero pressures, but overall Pipkins was steady in pass pro outside of the lone big blemish.
RB Joshua Kelley – 47.7
TE Donald Parham – 49.1
OG Jamaree Salyer – 51.2
WR Josh Palmer – 51.8
C Corey Linsley – 56.6
It was a rough day for the ground game as a whole and it led to Kelley being the offense’s lowest-graded player from Week Two. He ended with 39 yards on 13 carries.
The interior of the offensive line struggled against a really good defensive interior for the Titans that includes Pro Bowler Jeffrey Simmons and Denico Autry. They made life miserable for Zion Johnson, Jamaree Salyer, and Corey Linsley. Salyer led the Chargers with four pressures allowed, including a sack and two hurries. Linsley did not allow a sack but multiple hurries is still a bit unusual for the former All Pro.
This is also the second game in a row that Josh Palmer has ended up in the bottom five. He caught three passes for 13 yards and hasn’t played much of a role on offense despite entering the year as the team’s WR3 after training camp.
EDGE Joey Bosa* – 81.7
DT Morgan Fox – 71.1
S Alohi Gilman – 70.2
EDGE Tuli Tuipulotu – 69.1
S Derwin James – 67.0
CB Asante Samuel Jr. – 66.2
I included Bosa at the top here because he missed my qualifying cutoff by just one snap. He played such a great game while on a pitch count and he deserves the kudos that are coming his way. He looked like a revitalized player and maybe this is something the defense should lean on given how well rookie Tuli Tuipulotu played in his first career start. Speaking of, Tuli is looking like a real player! He directly affected the plays that led to Bosa’s sacks and showed that he can hold up in both the run game and as a pass rusher.
Morgan Fox led the team with four pressures and notched a sack of Tannehill inside their own five-yard line. He’s been the most underrated player on the defense since the middle of last season.
It’s rather interesting to see Samuel graded so high after his biggest debacle directly led to the Titans taking back a good chunk of momentum in the first half. He was burned by Treylon Burks for 71 yards before Derrick Henry punched it in two plays later, completely erasing the fact the Chargers just put up eight points on the other side less than five minutes before.
DT Austin Johnson – 41.0
CB Michael Davis – 44.0
DT Nick Williams – 49.8
LB Nick Niemann – 51.8
DT Sebastian Joseph-Day – 54.6
Similar to seeing Allen and Williams graded so high above, it’s not surprising to see the Chargers defensive tackle graded this low. It wasn’t a huge day from Henry on the ground but he won enough slowly chipping away at the defense to get the Titans in a position to stay in the game and then eventually in a spot to win it at the end.
Nick Niemann was forced into his first NFL start with Erick Kendricks and Daiyan Henley sidelined by injury. His tackle grade was a stellar 82.5 but that wasn’t good enough to make up for poor grades in run defense (52.9) and coverage (55.1).
Originally posted on Bolts From The Blue – All Posts