NFL Franchise Exit Report: LA Chargers

By: Little Italy (Publisher)

Follow on Twitter: @LILITALY853

Division: AFC West

2020 Finish: 20th

Record: (7-9)

2021 First RD Draft Pick: 13th

What went Right in 2020?

Obviously, the biggest bright spot for the 2020 LA Chargers season has to be the young gunslinger under center, Justin Herbert. The rookie quarterback was thrusted into the starting role just minutes before the start of a divisional matchup against the, then defending SB Champ, Chiefs. Herbert went on to have one of the best seasons ever by a rookie. He finished the season only behind Andrew Luck in rookie passing yards. Despite finishing second to Luck in the category, Herbert would still break the rookie pass yards per game and rookie passing touchdowns records in 2020. This record breaking 2020 would lead to Herbert being named the AP Offensive Rookie of the Year. In terms of fantasy football, Herbert did something that season starter Tyrod Taylor could not, and that is make the weapons around him fantasy relevant. With Herbert under center, he turned Keenan Allen into a top fantasy receiver and RB Austin Ekeler into a PPR monster out of the backfield. As fantasy owners, we enjoy an offense that funnels the ball to their top fantasy assets, and that is what this Chargers team did in 2020.

What Needs to Improve in 2021?

The biggest area that needs improved upon when it comes to the 2021 LA Chargers is play calling. Anthony Lynn did an ok job at times, but there were several late game calls/ Redzone calls throughout the season that left us scratching our heads. This would ultimately lead to his termination as Head Coach of the Chargers, now enter Brandon Staley. Staley is now tasked with taking advantage of this offensive talent, which has all the pieces in place to be a top five offense in my opinion. The Chargers have a young franchise QB in Herbert, a top five receiver in Keenan Allen, a very good pass catching tight end in Hunter Henry( who may or may not be a Charger this season, as he is set to hit free agency), and then Ekeler in the backfield who is very dangerous as a pass catcher. The only player we would like to see improvement from in 2021 from this offensive unit is WR Mike Williams. Since entering the league, Williams has been very inconsistent week to week, mostly because he was used as the primary field stretcher, which usually comes with few receptions and bigger chunk plays. I would like to see Williams used more than that down field jump ball player. Next time I will dive into the Franchise Exit Report for the Minnesota Vikings.