The Chargers (4-5) are on “must-win” alert. San Diego will travel to Denver for a pivotal divisional game that may determine who wins the AFC West.
The matchup is a rematch of last month’s chaotic and historic game against the Broncos. In that game, the Broncos (6-3) tied the Chargers atop the AFC West standings after an epic 35-24 victory. The Broncos faced a 24-0 deficit at halftime and managed to score 35 unanswered points for the fourth-greatest comeback in league history. This week definitely has the most at stake for the Chargers because their postseason hopes cling onto the result of this game.
They will need to beat the Broncos’ sixth-ranked defense that is clicking at the best time. With 12 sacks over the past two games, the matchup to watch will be the Chargers’ offensive line vs. the front seven of the Broncos. Forget the MVP-like season from Peyton Manning; the Chargers must establish an offense to ensure a shot at winning. Even more important, the Chargers must prevent those costly turnovers that just hand games over to opponents.
"The big negative plays, the turnovers are killing us," Chargers’ coach Norv Turner said. "Our biggest thing is we need to go put four quarters together, play at a high level, take care of the ball and not give up. If a team's going to make plays on you, make them earn it. Don't give up easy plays. It's a challenge for us coming into Denver."
The best way to prevent this is to protect Philip Rivers, who’s been downright awful in the fourth quarter. The Chargers' quarterback has been awful in the fourth quarter with a 56.5 passer rating and a league-worst six interceptions. It will be up to the O-line to prevent another historical collapse.