Anyone can give you a few reasons their team is going to win the upcoming game. Part of fandom is the ability to ferret out some level of hope in almost any situation. What we wanted to do in this series, is challenge writers of our fellow SB Nation NFL sites to give us some reasons why their team is going to come up short.
Richard Wade from Bolts from the Blue obliged this week, and here is what he had to say.
As in most NFL games, there are plenty of reasons on both sides for why one team should be able to pull off a victory. That said, the Chargers are definitely going to lose this game, and I am here to tell you why.
Colts fans are likely worried about being without Andrew Luck, but I am prepared to give you three reasons why should let those worries go.
The Chargers offensive line is really bad
There are only a handful of other teams in The League that can even make a credible argument that their offensive lines are even in the same ballpark of terrible, and none of those clubs is even pretending to be competitive. When your closest comps are the New York Jets, Arizona Cardinals, Cincinnati Bengals, and Miami Dolphins, you are not in a good way.
From left to right, the Chargers will roll out Trent Scott, Dan Feeney, Mike Pouncey, Michael Schofield, and Sam Tevi. The name you recognize is Pouncey, and yes, he is still a quality player. The team just agreed to a contract extension with him for a reason.
The rest exist on a spectrum from absurdly bad to just Schofield bad. Neither Scott nor Tevi is particularly adept at handling any type of pass rush. Schofield is painfully mediocre, and Feeney was all but beat out by Forrest Lamp this preseason, but apparently, he is going to keep starting anyway. At the end of the day, the primary takeaway is this: the Chargers will lose games because of their offensive line.
Defensive backfield injuries
Entering training camp, it looked like Gus Bradley’s defense had the enviable combination of talented starters at every position and depth unlike anything the Chargers had seen in years. Fast forward to September, and the defensive backfield has that depth in half of its starting positions instead of where it was valuable, providing depth.
Derwin James, after one professional season, is already in the conversation for best safety in franchise history. He is being replaced by Adrian Phillips. Phillips is a solid player who has some versatility but is at his best playing as a linebacker in sub packages. He is in no way comparable to James, who is one of the most dynamic football players on the planet.
Trevor Williams was arguably one of the best cornerbacks in football two years ago, and after spending all season last year hampered by injuries, he looked like he might return to form this year. He is replaced by Michael Davis who is not even in the argument for one of the best cornerbacks on the Chargers.
Finally, second-round pick Nasir Adderley missed almost all of the preseason due to injury, so instead of starting week 1, he will be hoping to rotate in and get some playing time to get back in game shape.
The Chargers have found ways to lose in September for years now. The last time they won a season opener was 2015, and they haven’t had a winning record in September since 2014. Yes, even last season when the Chargers went 12-4, they still lost two of three to open up the season. There is no logical reason why this pattern should continue. The Chargers have turned over both the roster and their coaching staff during that time.
Logic is for people that spend their spare time doing smarter things than obsessing over the fortunes of a professional sports team, though. I will believe the Chargers can win in September when they do it. Until then, congratulations to the Colts on opening up 1-0 on the road in game 1 of the Jacoby Brissett era.