The Los Angeles Chargers are visiting Ford Field on Sunday and they are bringing some absolute game-changers with them. The Detroit Lions better beware…
The Detroit Lions have a fairly large task that lies ahead on Sunday. They have to defend their home field against the visiting Los Angeles Chargers, a 2018 playoff team with a regular-season record of 12 wins and four losses. The Chargers are an exceptionally good football team.
Everyone knows how dangerous the Chargers offense can be, even without the services of star running back Melvin Gordon, as he continues his holdout. Los Angeles also has a possible future Hall of Fame quarterback in Philip Rivers manning their offense. Any time Rivers hits the field, you know that you’re in for a dog fight of a football game.
Even so, the Chargers offense won’t be the Lions biggest threat come Sunday. Detroit’s greatest challenge will be on the Chargers defensive side of the ball. Los Angeles’ relentless pass rush is going to push the Lions offensive line as good as they will be pushed all season long.
Detroit’s offensive line better be ready come 1:00 on Sunday at Ford Field. If this line cannot give Matthew Stafford proper time to actually play quarterback or give their running back Kerryon Johnson any running lanes, it will be a long day for the Lions.
This will have to be one of the best games played all season long for the Lions offensive line if they plan to walk away with a win. The Chargers are bringing a couple of game-changers along with them on that defensive front and they will be prepared.
2016 AP Defensive Rookie Of The Year and 2017 Pro Bowl defensive end Joey Bosa will be itching to get after Stafford on Sunday along with fellow defensive end and Pro Bowler (2017, 2018) Melvin Ingram. Both men are excellent at stopping the opposing run game behind the line for losses as well.
These guys are absolute monsters. They are both strong at the point of attack with their power moves and very quick with their speed moves on their way to turning the edge. Both defensive ends can be lined up practically anywhere along the defensive line. They are incredibly knowledgeable, athletic, powerful, and fast. These guys are just truly and purely gifted.
In order for the Lions to have any chance in this game, these two guys must be stopped. For that to happen, Detroit’s offensive line will have to be much, much better than they were in week one against the Arizona Cardinals. In particular, offensive tackles Taylor Decker and Rick Wagner need to step up their game tremendously.
It has been reported that Decker is battling an injury so we may see Tyrell Crosby in his place Sunday. It shouldn’t matter with the “next man up” mentality that the Detroit Lions carry around with them. Whoever is playing has to beware of Bosa and Ingram.
Maybe the best way to slow this pass rush duo down would be to give the offensive line some help. Detroit could possibly try and run some misdirection plays and play-action to help the line, along with some short and quick throws to their slot receiver Danny Amendola. Screen passes are always an option too.
The best route to take in order to supply the Detroit offensive front with some help would probably be to use their two and three tight end sets. There is no need in trying to get fancy. Bring in the extra blockers and pound the rock. All of the Lions tight ends can block and they can all block well.
The Detroit Lions can’t just avoid the Charger’s defensive front. They need to embrace it and wear it down. They will need a bruiser to hit them in the gut. This should be a game for running back C.J. Anderson to get some work in alongside Kerryon Johnson. Detroit needs to hit Los Angeles with the old one-two punch. Speed and power in perfect harmony if you will.
At the end of the day, the Detroit Lions need to slow this pass rush first and foremost. As I have pointed out, there are multiple ways to achieve this. How will the Lions decide to tackle this challenge? We shall wait and see!