The Los Angeles Chargers look to put last week in the past quickly. They put on a pathetic display against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday Night Football with a 24-17 loss. The score isn’t indicative of how badly the game went for the Chargers. Pittsburgh were in complete control from the first drive of the game, so they sat on the lead and coasted. The lead was never in doubt for the Steelers, as they put the game away on an onside kick recovery late in regulation.
Devil Hodges didn’t have to do much at quarterback for the Steelers. That was the big concern going into Sunday night. It was Hodges, a rookie out of Samford’s first NFL start of his career. He was buried on the depth chart behind Ben Roethlisberger, Mason Rudolph, and Josh Dobbs in the preseason. Roethlisberger and Rudolph both got injured and Dobbs lost the quarterback battle against Rudolph. The Chargers couldn’t take advantage, as their offensive line put on an embarrassing performance against the Steelers’ pass rushers.
Hodges passed for just 132 yards with a touchdown and interception, so that goes to show how useless Philip Rivers and the offense was for the Chargers. 9 times out of 10, holding a quarterback to those anemic numbers results in a win. Blaming Rivers is the easy way out for that disastrous performance, but it begins and ends with his offensive line which was terrible from the first series. The Steelers kicked off the scoring with a defensive score because of a backwards pass that was scooped up and scored.
Rivers was under tremendous pressure on that play and was just trying to get rid of the ball to his safety valve. This week it isn’t going to get any easier for the Chargers’ offensive like. Say what you want about the offense, but the Tennessee defense will put a lot of pressure on Rivers and company up front. Don’t expect to see Marcus Mariota for the Titans this week, as Ryan Tannehill is scheduled to get the starting nod. Mariota was benched after leading the Titans to no points against the Broncos. Head below for our free Chargers vs. Titans pick.
Los Angeles Chargers vs. Tennessee Titans NFL Week 7 Betting Odds:
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Chargers vs. Titans Pick:
The greatest news for the Chargers is that they could be getting left tackle Russell Okung back this week. After dealing with a pulmonary embolism caused by blood clots in June, Okung has been tending to a very serious health condition since then. He had to sit out the first six weeks of the regular season and there is a chance he plays on Sunday.
However, his effectiveness and how much rust he’s going to carry into Nashville could be a concern. Thursday marked his first full practice in nine months. Okung will eventually shake off the rust and get into game shape, but in a different time zone on the road would be tough.
Okung playing out of football shape is likely better than what we saw from the Chargers’ offensive line last week, though. They are going to have to deal with another very good defensive line in Week 7. The Titans are 8th in the NFL with just 321.8 yards allowed per game.
They are dangerous against the pass with 217.3 points allowed per game. Tennessee have also surrendered only 15.3 points a game for 5th in the NFL, having allowed 20 points only once this season. So, how does a team with that kind of production defensively have a record of 2-4?
Well, the same issues persist for the Titans on the offensive side of the ball. Their offense has been dreadful and are trying to light a spark with Tannehill at quarterback this week. If the Titans are wise, they don’t make Tannehill win the game, though. The Chargers are fully exploitable on the ground, so Derrick Henry could be in store for a big afternoon at home.
The Chargers have allowed a total of 315 yards on the ground the last two weeks. Denver are a similar team to the Titans and the Broncos grinded out a 20-13 win with their running backs. Joe Flacco passed for 182 yards with a touchdown and interception and still won. The Titans will not need Tannehill to be a savior in this game.
The Chargers’ defensive line is terrible without Melvin Ingram and they are going to be without defensive tackle Justin Jones as well. Expect Henry to be the only standout offensively in this contest. The matchup certainly favors him at home in Nashville. The Chargers and Titans have been in similar seats recently with some disappointing play on the field. I will give the edge to the home squad in their own time zone needing just a field goal to cover this spread.