The Los Angeles Chargers (1-2) return to ROKiT Field at StubHub Center for the first of back-to-back home games when they host the San Francisco 49ers (1-2). Kickoff is set for 1:25pm PT.
What to Watch For…
On Offense for the Chargers
Philip Rivers is once again on fire to start the season. Number 17 has completed 75 of 108 attempts (69.4 percent) for 906 yards with eight touchdowns and only one interception for a 115.7 passer rating. Rivers’ eight touchdowns are the second-most of his career through three games while his 75 completions are third and 906 yards rank fourth. His top target once again is Keenan Allen, who leads the team in catches (17) and receiving yards (219). Meanwhile, Mike Williams has emerged as a lethal weapon, totaling three touchdowns in his last two games. On the ground, Melvin Gordon continues to be a touchdown machine as his 26 points are the most in the AFC and second-most in the NFL for non-kickers. His 316 total yards from scrimmage rank fourth in the AFC while his counterpart, Austin Ekeler, ranks sixth with 295 yards. Ekeler also ranks second in the NFL when it comes to yards per carry with an 8.15 average.
On Offense for the 49ers
San Francisco’s offense will look awfully different this week after starting quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo suffered a season-ending ACL injury in their Week 3 loss. Taking his place under center is C.J. Beathard, who was the team’s third-round pick (104th overall) in the 2017 NFL Draft. Beathard appeared in seven games with five starts last season, completing 123 of 224 attempts (54.9 percent) for 1,430 yards, four touchdowns and six interceptions. Beathard will likely target tight end George Kittle, who leads the team with 12 catches and 191 yards receiving. Meanwhile, the Chargers could expect a heavy dose of Matt Breida, who leads the league with 274 rushing yards and 8.6 yards per carry. Veteran Alfred Morris has also been effective, carrying the ball a team-high 40 times for 153 yards and a touchdown.
On Defense for the Chargers
Derwin James continues to turn heads for the Bolts and looks to do more of the same against the 49ers. He currently leads the team in total tackles (23), passes defensed (four), sacks (2.0) and interceptions (one). James isn’t the only rookie making his presence felt as fourth-round pick Kyzir White ranks third on the team with 19 tackles while also pacing the squad with one pick.
On Defense for the 49ers
The 49ers defense is paced by linebacker Fred Warner, whose 33 total tackles are tops in the NFC and third-most in the entire NFL. Meanwhile, defensive tackle DeForest Buckner has come into his own this season, ranking fifth in the league with 3.5 sacks. Finally, Richard Sherman has been a difference maker in the secondary his entire career, but his status is up in the air after leaving last week’s game due to injury.
The Bolts own a .500 record against the 49ers with each team winning seven games apiece. The last time the teams squared off in the regular season marked the Chargers’ greatest comeback as they tied a franchise record by storming back from a 21-point second half deﬁcit to pull out a thrilling 38-35 OT victory.
By the Numbers
The Chargers rank fourth in total offense (415.3 yards per game), 10th in passing (291.0 ypg), ninth in rushing (124.3 ypg) and eighth in points (27.3). The 49ers rank 17th in total offense (359.7 ypg), 24th in passing (207.0 ypg), second in rushing (152.7 ypg) and 12th in points (24.3).
Defensively, the Bolts rank 24th in total defense (392.0 ypg), 25th in passing (217.7 ypg), 24th in rushing (120.3 ypg) and 31st in points allowed (31). San Francisco ranks 22nd in total defense (384.7 ypg), 27th in passing (287.7 ypg), 10th in rushing (97.0 ypg) and 27th in points allowed (29.7).
Milestones on the Horizon
Philip Rivers’ next game marks the 200th of his career.
Philip Rivers needs 222 passing yards to reach 51,476 for his career to pass Hall of Fame QB John Elway for No. 8 in NFL history.
Keenan Allen needs 100-plus receiving yards to post the 20th 100-yard game of his career to tie WR Wes Chandler for the sixth-most in team annals.
Antonio Gates needs 51 receiving yards to reach 11,620 for his career and pass WR Calvin Johnson for 29th in NFL history.
Melvin Gordon needs 13 rushing attempts to pass RB Chuck Muncie (761) for the sixth-most in Chargers history.
Melvin Gordon needs 85 rushing yards to become the sixth Charger ever to reach 3,000 career rushing yards.
Melvin Gordon needs 83 scrimmage yards to pass Gary Anderson (4,228) for No. 9 in team history by a running back.
Melvin Gordon needs seven receiving yards to pass Chuck Muncie (1,237) for No. 8 in career receiving yards among running backs in team history.
Tyrell Williams needs 45 receiving yards to reach 2,000 for his career and become the 26th player in history to do so in a Chargers uniform.
Melvin Ingram needs 3.5 sacks to reach 40.0 for his career and become the seventh player in team history to reach that mark.
Caleb Sturgis needs nine points to reach 500 for his career.
The Chargers need 100-plus rushing yards to post the fourth-straight game of the year with at least 100 rushing yards. It would be the ninth time in team history that the Bolts did so to start a season.
Noteworthy vs. the 49ers
Philip Rivers is a perfect 3-0 against the 49ers in his career. He sports a 108.1 rating with nine touchdowns and three interceptions. He has thrown for 963 yards on 81-for-118 (68.6 percent) passing. In the last meeting, Rivers threw for four touchdowns and totaled 356 yards in an overtime victory.
In two career games against the 49ers, Antonio Gates has caught 12 passes for 170 yards and three scores. In the last meeting against the 49ers, Gates hauled in seven passes for 92 yards and two touchdowns.
Brandon Mebane has faced the 49ers 15 times during the regular season. He has registered 31 total tackles, six for a loss, including two sacks.
Chargers Head Coach Anthony Lynn played for the 49ers in from 1995-96.
49ers QB C.J. Beathard is the grandson of Pro Football Hall of Famer Bobby Beathard, who was the Chargers general manager from 1990-00, including an appearance in Super Bowl XXIX.
LS/TE Kyle Nelson was on the Chargers roster in 2012.
Assistant Special Teams Coach Stan Kwan was on the Chargers coaching staff from 1991-96, serving as an assistant coach/assistant special teams coach.
CBS – Andrew Catalon (play-by-play) and James Lofton (analyst)
KFI-AM 640 – Matt “Money” Smith (play-by-play), Daniel Jeremiah (analyst) and Shannon Farren (sideline)
Spanish Radio: KFWB – AM 980 – Mario Solis (play-by-play) and Jorge Villanueva (analyst)
Chargers radio broadcasts throughout the season will be able to be heard across ten radio stations from Southern California to Nevada. Fans can listen in English on KGB-FM and KLSD-AM (San Diego), KNWZ-AM (Palm Springs), KALZ-AM (Fresno), KBFP-AM (Bakersfield), KNWH-FM (Yucca Valley), KRLV-FM (Las Vegas), KRAK-AM (Victorville) and KATY-FM (San Bernardino). Spanish broadcasts can be heard on XHFG-FM (San Diego).