Here are my five low-performing Chargers players in their game against the Falcons:
Low Offensive Player: Antonio Gates
Antonio had another game of dropping passes he should have caught. He could have had a touchdown but Philip didn’t see him running down the field with no one around him. I hope Gates get back to his usual self because so far, this season he hasn’t been doing much. I know he had that rib injury and probably still has that to deal with, but he is having trouble catching passes that in the past were always easy, sure catches.
Low Defensive Player: Antoine Cason
Since last season, Cason has not been playing well at all. Now this season if you watch all the opponents first passes against the Chargers they are towards Cason. Why? Teams are picking on him now constantly because most of the time he is getting beat or always draws the pass interference penalty or illegal contact from trying to keep from getting beat down the field. This week he was all over Roddy White, and not the good kind – he was holding and had illegal contact called on him. The Chargers secondary just got torched by Matt Ryan and the Falcons receivers, that is all there is to it.
Low Rookie: Mike Harris
Mike got beat all game, got pushed back, and got harassed by John Abraham. He couldn’t keep up with Abraham; he and Clary both were the main reasons Philip didn’t have much time to throw and why the pocket was closing in so quickly on Philip. This was due to Mike and Clary on both ends of the offensive line getting pushed back and thrown to the ground.
Low Veteran: Philip Rivers
Now we all know the offense didn’t get the ball much this week, but when they did, Rivers throws were off target and thrown a little high at times. This was due to the offensive line rushing his throws but was also on Philip. He still looks like he is playing like he did last year. His decisions with the ball are not good – he forced throws into coverage many times and he didn’t see the whole field, missing open receivers like Floyd and Gates. He needs to turn his play around quickly or else we are in for another year of Rivers not playing well. So far he has only had one season where he was lights out since being here in San Diego.
Low Special Teams Player: Mike Scifres
Now this one is tough because Mike is always the only consistently good Charger player on the team that is always a bright spot. This game, though, Mike’s punts were not as long and the Falcons turned them into good returns, giving them great field position for Matt Ryan and the offense to do their thing. He also had that bad kick in the fourth quarter that was just short and only traveled 29 yards. I’ll just chalk this one up as it not being Mike’s day. He’ll bounce back next week for sure.