The Los Angeles Chargers have battled their way into a three-way tie atop the AFC West with four games to go in the season.
One day after the Bolts improved their record to 6-6, Head Coach Anthony Lynn weighed in on a number of topics.
Keenan Crushing Expectations
The play of Keenan Allen has been all the rage of late. After all, KA13 just became the first player in NFL history to record 10-plus catches, 100-plus receiving yards and at least one TD catch in three straight games.
After missing half of 2015 and virtually all of 2016, no one knew exactly what to expect out of Allen this season. The team had high hopes, but it's safe to say no one could have foreseen the type of tear he's been on. Still, Lynn had some fun answering the question when asked if he could have imagined this type of stretch:
"Absolutely! What are you talking about, man? You're talking about a high pick. That's what they do. With Keenan, he's just gotten better every single week. The guy didn't play much last year, and I think you see more chemistry between him and Phil the longer they play together… It is special, but I think he's doing his job. Our passing game has to go through him. He's accepted that challenge. He's studying, he's doing the right things, he's getting open. I've seen some pretty good receivers. I played with one, Jerry Rice. I think what Keenan did these past three weeks is pretty special."
The Bolts are on their third kicker of the year, and Lynn made it clear he's hopeful Travis Coons can lock down the position for the rest of the year.
While he got off to an inauspicious beginning when his first attempt clanked off the right upright from 38-yards away, he responded by making his next four field goals. In the process, he set a franchise record for most field goals by a Charger kicker in his team debut.
Here's what Lynn had to say about Coons:
"Travis did hit four of five on field goals after missing the first one, so there has been some improvement…No (plans to go with another kicker). *Travis is our kicker right now."*
There may not be a more resilient team in the NFL right now than the Los Angeles Chargers. It could have been easy to abandon ship and wilt in the face of adversity after starting 0-4. Instead, they've won six of eight to get back in the playoff hunt.
Even though Lynn knew he had a tough, hardnosed group of men, he admitted he never imagined they'd have to showcase that resiliency so early in the season:
"No, I did not (expect it so soon). It's a testament to our players and a testament to our coaches. Our whole organization, to be honest with you. I was really pleased in how everyone stayed positive. It was so encouraging. Just looking at the organization and the building. So, it says a lot about what we're building here and the culture that we have."
Only Have Eyes for Washington
With the team now tied for the AFC West lead, it would be a safe assumption that the Bolts are paying attention to the Kansas City Chiefs and Oakland Raiders. All three teams share identical 6-6 records, but that three-way deadlock will be broken this next week when the Chiefs host the Raiders. The Chargers will then visit Kansas City for primetime clash before hosting the Raiders in the season finale.
However, Lynn stressed his team is focused only on one team – the Washington Redskins:
"The only (team) we're keeping an eye on right now is the Washington Redskins, because if we don't win this one, those other games don't even matter. So right now I'm really trying to lock in and focus on these Redskins…. I don't think we can take anything for granted. I think these guys know that, especially after the way we started. That's some of the lessons that you learn when you start out like that. You can't afford to take anything for granted or look ahead to anybody."