The Chargers currently lead the Washington Football Team at the halfway mark of the season opener by the score of 13-9.
Here are a few things that have stood out:
Justin Herbert is locked in
One of the main storylines was how Herbert would look in new offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi’s system, and the sophomore has not lost a step. With a combination of solid play design and protection, Herbert is sitting pretty with his high volume of passing. Connecting with nine different targets, Herbert has 19-of-27 passing for 179 yards.
Mike Williams looks like a completely different player
Lombardi said to expect big things from Williams in his role as the ‘X receiver’ and he stuck to his word. Instead of solely being a down-the-field threat like he was the past few seasons, Williams has ran a variety of routes at all levels of the field and has caught nearly everything thrown his way – six catches for 59 yards.
Pressure is paying dividends
Washington has been stymied through the air, as they only have 11 yards passing. The main reason why Ryan Fitzpatrick and Taylor Heinicke have struggled is because it has been difficult in the face of constant pressure. Utilizing twists/stunts, pressure packages and one-on-one matchups, the Chargers have lived in the backfield and have made life easier for the back end of the defense.
Shaky special teams
The special teams department has not been as promising as you would expect after finishing last in the NFL in 2020. The returns were below average. Inconsistent coverage led to decent field position for Washington. They were dinged for a block in the back. All things that need to be cleaned up moving forward.