The Chargers’ first two offensive series on Thursday night in Arizona went for 73 and 87 yards, respectively.
Running backs Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson combined for 62 rushing yards and a touchdown in less than a half of work. Tyrod Taylor had enough time in the pocket to go 6-of-6 for 72 yards – a quarterback rating of 116.7.
After the 17-13 preseason loss to the Cardinals, Los Angeles’ playmakers credited the guys up front for the offense’s success moving the football.
“Everyone has to play their part, but that definitely helps when you’re running through bigger holes,” Ekeler said. “It makes it easier on us, and it makes it easier to get play-actions in there. Now we’re getting out playing the run a little harder. It starts with them, [the] O-line, that’s where everything starts.”
Browse through the best shots from the Bolts preseason opener in Arizona.
Third-year offensive linemen Forrest Lamp and Dan Feeney – who started at center in place of Mike Pouncey – played all 60 offensive snaps against the Cardinals.
Offensive tackles Trent Scott (42 snaps) and Sam Tevi (40 snaps) played a majority of the preseason opener. Right guard Michael Schofield played 17 snaps.
After the game, head coach Anthony Lynn said he needed to watch the tape to fully evaluate the O-line’s performance as a whole. While the chains moved early, Lynn acknowledged that late penalties – which he attributed to technique and fundamentals – were disappointing.
“I think some of those guys played pretty solid,” Lynn said. “The run game was clicking early, and they were in the game. They played a lot tonight. We’re just looking at different combinations.”
Scott said it felt good to get quality reps against edge rushers like seven-time Pro Bowler Terrell Suggs. As a second-year player, he said practicing against defensive ends Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram each day has left him no choice but to improve.
“We just came out and got rolling early,” Scott said. “Everybody was on the same page across the board and we came out and had a good drive.”
“Those guys were eating it up up front,” Jackson said. “… Dan stepping in and playing center, that was awesome. Those guys were working up front. We always appreciate when they open up those big gaps for us. Austin took advantage of it. I took advantage of it, and it gets the offense rolling. We need that run game.”