Let’s look at 5 storylines worth keeping an eye on when the Chargers and Cincinnati Bengals meet up in Week 1 action.
Tyrod Taylor in This New Chargers’ Offense
For the first time in almost 14 years, the Chargers will have a new starting quarterback. Tyrod Taylor will be starting in his first game for the Chargers.
The Chargers also changed their offensive scheme over the offseason, it will be interesting to see how Shane Steichen and Anthony Lynn implement this new offense under Taylor against the Bengals on Sunday.
Dan Feeney and Forrest Lamp Stepping up in the Absence of Pouncey
The Chargers Pro Bowl Center Mike Pouncey showed up on the injury report late in the week with a hip injury. He has been ruled out of Sunday’s game against the Bengals. In his place, Dan Feeney will slide over to Center, and Forrest Lamp slides in at Left Guard. Both linemen have played well together in pass protection, however, struggled in run blocking.
This could play a factor in the Charger’s new run-heavy offensive scheme.
Gus Bradley’s Defensive Adjustments After the Loss of Derwin
The Chargers lost their All-Pro safety for the season two weeks ago. He had successful surgery and has started his recovery for next season. Chargers defensive coordinator, Gus Bradley Will have to work on moving around the secondary to fill the void of James.
The current plan is to have Raysean Jenkins move over to Strong Safety and have the 2019 second-round pick Nasir Adderly make his first start for the Chargers at Free Safety.
Joe Burrow vs the Chargers’ Pass Rush
The 2020 first-overall pick Joe Burrow will be making his first-ever start in the NFL against the Chargers on Sunday. The Bengals have most of their offensive pieces coming back, and a healthy AJ Green to start the season. The Bengals did little to address their offensive line from last season after it was one of the worst offensive line units in the NFL.
The pass-rushing duo of Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram against the Bengals offensive line will be an interesting matchup to watch.
Snap Counts for Rookies
There will be rookies from both sides playing in this matchup, Burrow will be starting for the Bengals all season. The Chargers will likely have a lot of usage from rookies, with Kenneth Murray Jr. starting at linebacker.
With complementary roles for Joshua Kelley, Joe Reed, and KJ Hill on offense and special teams.
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