Los Angeles Chargers: Three Things to Watch Against the New England Patriots
The Los Angeles Chargers are heading into the division round of the playoffs to face the New England Patriots. The Chargers survived a game against the Baltimore Ravens last week. They lead for most of the game. However, the Chargers let the Ravens get close enough to try to tie the game. The Chargers defense would get a late interception that would seal the victory. They were the second best team in the AFC this year. Nearly winning the division. Now they head to Foxboro to play the Patriots. Here are three things to watch on Sunday.
Rivers has been one of the better quarterbacks in the NFL since being drafted out of North Carolina State. He has had the weapons to make to the Super Bowl. This has been one of the better years for him. This season he totaled only 12 interceptions. The problem for him has been he had 6 in the final four games. He and the Chargers can’t afford to turn the ball over and expect to beat the Patriots. Rivers didn’t have an interception last week against the Ravens he may need to have that happen again this week.
2. Chargers defense
This defense played well against the Ravens. The one goal that they had to do last week was containing the Ravens run game. The Chargers did just that. At times Lamar Jackson and company didn’t dominate as they had during the season. However, the problem that they might have is stopping the run against the Patriots. The Patriots have used the run this year and like to use the running backs in the passing game. The Chargers are one of the worst teams when it comes to stopping the running backs in the passing game. They will have to make some adjustments, or the Patriots will have a field day.
3. Cold Weather
The Chargers play in warm weather in Los Angeles. Therefore, Rivers has not been great in colder weather. In fact, they will be dealing with 40 degrees or cooler on Sunday afternoon. Rivers has posted an 87.8 rating in his last 10 chilly weather games. This is not bad, but it will factor into the game against the Patriots. The Chargers are a good enough team to beat the Patriots, but the weather will be a factor.
The Chargers like the remaining 8 teams deserve to be in this round. They must play one of their best games if they want to get to the championship round. Philip Rivers is on the cusp of being all great quarterbacks want to be. He will need to not throw interceptions. The Chargers defense will have to stop James White and Sony Michel. They will also have to deal with the cooler weather. If the Chargers can play a good game, they will move on to the AFC Championship game.
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