The Los Angeles Chargers are relatively healthy heading into the postseason, and on Monday, Head Coach Anthony Lynn provided updates on three players dealing with injuries – Hunter Henry, Melvin Gordon and Jatavis Brown.
While he is not yet on the active roster, Henry returned to practice two weeks ago after tearing his ACL in May during OTAs. According to Lynn, the 24-year-old will ramp up activity this week, including his first extended action with the offense.
“Hunter Henry, he will take reps with the offense this week,” Lynn said. “He’s been working on the scout team and doing some individual and some drills on the side, but this week he will work with our offense. We’ll see where he’s at, at the end of the week.”
The increased activity is clearly an important, positive step.
However, Lynn cautioned it’s too early to know whether he’ll be activated to the 53-man roster or not.
“(We) want to get a good look at him this week to see where he’s at,” he explained. “I like the progress that he’s been making, but he didn’t play football in a long time. Since last December and he hurt (himself in May), so it’s been a while. He’s got to have to really show us that he’s ready.”
So what exactly is that “progress” Lynn mentioned?
“I believe that the knee is stable,” he said. “We did some things last week, I thought he looked really good. Now it’s just about his conditioning, getting back with the chemistry with the offense and just playing football.”
Meanwhile, Lynn announced that Gordon tweaked his ankle during Sunday’s win over the Denver Broncos, which is why he came out of the game in the fourth quarter.
“Melvin Gordon came out of the game with an ankle (issue),” he said. “He will get treatment today and tomorrow. We’ll take a look at him on Wednesday to see where he’s at.”
However, Lynn is optimistic at this point of his star running back’s chances of suiting up.
“I do expect him to be available I’m not sure how serious his ankle injury is, but knowing Melvin, this type of game, these are the games they live to play for, so I do think he’ll be available. We’ll see though. I’m not going to guarantee that.”
While Lynn said Henry and Gordon appear to be trending up, the news isn’t as fortunate for Jatavis Brown. The third-year linebacker will regrettably miss the postseason after sustaining an ankle injury late in the first quarter vs. the Broncos.
Thus, the Chargers’ depth at linebacker will be tested with several players needing to step up.
Chief amongst them is Hayes Pullard, the 26-year-old Inglewood native who’s mostly played special teams for the Bolts in 2018. The good news is Pullard is well-versed in this defense and had a strong outing vs. the Broncos.
“We have guys that are going to have to step up,” Lynn said. “Hayes is one of those guys. Kyle Wilson, he’s one of those guys. Those guys want to step up. We may play with some different personnel packages as well, we’ll see.… (But) I thought (Hayes) came in, played hard. He’s a sure-tackler. He knows our defense like the back of his hand. He helps people around him. He’s a good football player.”