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Mailbag: Korey Toomer's Success and AFC West Schedules

Q:  How can someone like Korey Toomer be in the league on practice squads or be inactive and not be given a shot until now? Dude is balling out! – Kasey Fox

A: Sometimes it's just a matter of being in the right place at the right time.  Toomer did have some injuries he had to overcome after being drafted in 2012 by the Seattle Seahawks, but I think it is more than just being healthy. This Chargers' system is one that allows him to maximize his best attributes – speed and athleticism. I wrote this article a few weeks ago about how he's rewarded the Bolts faith in him, and it is even more relevant now.  Toomer has played lights out at inside linebacker with an even more increased role after additional injuries. Just like with Tyrell Williams, who went undrafted out of Western Oregon, sometimes all you need is a chance to show what you can do in a system that best fits you. Toomer has rewarded the Bolts' faith in him with a team-high three forced fumbles and a number of other high impact plays.

Q:  I ride or die Bolts through thick and thin. There's no reason we can't go 6-0 or 5-1 down the stretch, but we need the Broncos, Chiefs and Raiders to lose. What does their schedule look like? Because we need at least one of them to lose three or four games. Let's do this, boys! #BoltUp #ChargeOn #BoltGang – Ramon Garcia

A: Love your passion.  Personally, the 2013 season taught me to never give up hope no matter the situation. The Bolts were 5-7 that year with four games left, and even after improving their record to 7-7, pundits gave the Chargers a 1% chance to make the playoffs.  We know how that worked out.  Now, I'm not saying history will repeat itself, but it certainly shows how nothing is set in stone no matter how bright or grim a team's outlook appears at any point of the year.  As you mentioned, while the Chargers can only control their own outcomes in their final six games, they do need teams ahead of them to lose.  Here is the schedule for each AFC West rival you asked for:

Denver Broncos
Week 11 - BYE
Week 12 – vs. Kansas City Chiefs (Sunday Night Football)
Week 13 – at Jacksonville Jaguars
Week 14 – at Tennessee Titans
Week 15 – vs. New England Patriots
Week 16 – at Kansas City Chiefs (Sunday Night Football)
Week 17 – vs. Oakland Raiders

Kansas City Chiefs
Week 11 – vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Week 12 – at Denver Broncos (Sunday Night Football)
Week 13 – at Atlanta Falcons
Week 14 – vs. Oakland Raiders (Thursday Night Football)
Week 15 – vs. Tennessee Titans
Week 16 – vs. Denver Broncos (Sunday Night Football)
Week 17 – at San Diego Chargers

Oakland Raiders
Week 11 – vs. Houston Texans (Monday Night Football in Mexico City)
Week 12 – vs. Carolina Panthers
Week 13 – vs. Buffalo Bills
Week 14 – at Kansas City Chiefs (Thursday Night Football)
Week 15 – at San Diego Chargers
Week 16 – vs. Indianapolis Colts
Week 17 – at Denver Broncos

Q:  Are you surprised that McCoy gave the team six whole days off for the bye because that seems like a lot of time off? – Chuck Maguire

A: Absolutely not. In fact, I think it was the absolute right decision.  Outside of a brief three day break after the Thursday night game, the players have been going nonstop with long days since the end of July.  The Week 11 bye is the latest a team can get one during the season, so six days off to rest up, reset the mind and prepare for the six game stretch run will hopefully lead to a refreshed Chargers team.

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