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Mailbag: An Overlooked Area for Improvement

Q: Honest question Rick - Do you really honestly think the Bolts can go on a run and make this a season? – Dray C.

A: Absolutely. There is still plenty of football to be played as we are only a quarter of the way through the season. Just look at the 1992 Chargers, who started 0-4 but made the postseason. While this question has been a popular one this week, I urge fans to take things week by week. It’s easy to get caught up in emotions and want to look at the big picture, but really all that matters right now is getting a win at the Giants.

Q:  Lots of things we need to improve. What is one area we need to improve that you think isn’t getting the same attention like the run D and stuff? – Henry Fitzgerald

A: There are a lot of areas that need improvement when you are 0-4. You mentioned the inability to stop the run as one factor, but on defense many have pointed to poor tackling and an inability to get takeaways.  On offense, the main topics have been struggling to establish the run and struggles on third down. However, one area that hasn’t gotten much attention has been time of possession.  The Bolts rank dead last in the NFL in that area, possessing the ball for just 25:40 on average.  Coincidentally, they’ve also run the fifth fewest plays on offense (170).  A staple of a Philip Rivers’ led offense the past few years has been long, sustained drives in which the Bolts have controlled the clock.  However, it’s not just offensive struggles that have hindered the team’s time of possession.  An inability to force turnovers or get stops on third downs by the defense has allowed opposing teams to author long drives, keeping Rivers on the sideline. 

Q:  Who is your Chargers MVP so far? – Bryan Michaels

A: It’s hard to name an MVP when you have an 0-4 record, but I’d have to give my pick to Keenan Allen.  Melvin Ingram is a close second, but seeing Allen bounce back and dominate like he has gives him the slight edge.  KA13’s 24 receptions rank eighth in the NFL while his 334 receiving yards are the fourth-most in the league.  He’s passed the 100-yard receiving mark in two of the four contests this year, and has gotten better each week.  Allen even posted the two longest catches of his career against the Eagles with receptions of 50 and 49 yards.  It’s been a pleasure to watch him reclaim his spot as one of the NFL’s elite.

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