Packers already have blueprint for flaccid Chargers defense
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To beat the Los Angeles Chargers, Matt LaFleur and the Green Bay Packers will have to generate their best offensive day of the season to date. Justin Herbert, even without Mike Williams and Josh Palmer, hung 38 on the Detroit Lions last weekend and has helped the Chargers score 27 or more points in three straight games. The Packers haven’t scored 27 points since Week 1.
However, facing a familiar defense, LaFleur and the Packers already know how to attack this lackluster Chargers group. Not only do they play a version of this same philosophy under Joe Barry, but the Chargers run an even worse version of the defenses Green Bay has already faced and torched.
Against the Pittsburgh Steelers, LaFleur had a choice: play to his team’s strengths by using big personnel to maximize their schematic advantages or attack the weak point of the opposing defense. He chose to go at a sub-par secondary en route to Jordan Love’s most impressive aerial performance of his young career.
Here’s the thing: No matter where you look, no matter how they play, the Chargers are a bad defense. In base? They’re dreadful. Get them in sub-package situations? Bad, though like the Packers, oddly solid against the run. In fact, the only place they’re even average is playing tiny with six defensive backs on the field, most likely because those are going to be must-pass situations where Joey Bosa and Khalil Mack can tee off.
When the Packers offense has struggled this year, it’s been defenses playing against type such as the Denver Broncos not matching personnel or the Las Vegas Raiders going massively against tendencies with their safeties and coverage looks. Those DCs, Vance Joseph and Patrick Graham, are wild cards. Chargers head coach Brandon Staley is a greeting card.