Scouting Report: Chargers vs. Seahawks

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The Los Angeles Chargers (5-2) return from the bye looking for their fifth-straight win when they head to the Pacific Northwest to visit the Seattle Seahawks (4-3). Kickoff from CenturyLink Field is set for 1:05pm PT.

What to Watch For…

On Offense for the Chargers

Philip Rivers looks to pick up right where he left off as he is in the midst of one of the best statistical seasons of his career. The future Hall of Famer has completed 152 of 220 attempts (69.1 percent) for 2,008 yards, 17 touchdowns and only three interceptions for a 117.8 passer rating. His top target of late has been Tyrell Williams, who scored three highlight reel touchdowns in his last two contests. Overall, he’s caught 20 passes for 428 yards and four touchdowns. However, it’s his big play ability that’s really set him apart as his 21.4 yards per reception ranks second in the NFL among players with at least 20 receptions. On the ground, Melvin Gordon still ranks near the top of every statistical category despite missing Week 7’s contest against the Tennessee Titans while nursing a hamstring injury. The running back has toted the rock 91 times for 468 yards (5.1 ypc) and six touchdowns. He’s also caught 30 passes for 279 yards and another three touchdowns.

On Offense for the Seahawks

Russell Wilson continues to be one of the NFL’s most dynamic quarterbacks with both his arm and his legs. The quarterback has completed 120 of 182 attempts (65.9 percent) for 1,556 yards, 16 touchdowns and four picks for a 112.8 passer rating. Wilson is also fresh off posting the first perfect 158.3 passer rating in Seahawks history. His top target has been Tyler Lockett, who leads the team in catches (25), yards (394) and touchdowns (six). The Seahawks also recently got Doug Baldwin back from injury, making their air attack even more dangerous. Seattle’s ground attack is led by Chris Carson, who has carried the ball 103 times for 457 yards and two scores. Mike Davis has emerged as an ideal complement, toting the rock 52 times for 226 yards and a trio of TDs.

On Defense for the Chargers

Corey Liuget has been quite the difference maker since returning into the fold in Week 5, amassing nine tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks and one pass defensed in only three games. The defense as a whole is paced by Denzel Perryman, who has a team-high 57 tackles. Derwin James ranks second with 48 total tackles, but is also tied for the team lead in sacks (3.5) with Melvin Ingram. James’ six passes defensed also rank second to Desmond King (seven), who additionally leads the Bolts with two interceptions.

On Defense for the Seahawks

Frank Clark has taken his game to new heights in 2018 as one of the league’s most feared pass rushers. He already has 6.5 sacks on the year, and he’s done most of his damage at home. Over his past five games at CenturyLink Field, Clark’s amassed four sacks, two forced fumbles and one interception. Meanwhile, with Richard Sherman now in San Francisco and Earl Thomas out for the year due to injury, Seattle’s defense looks quite different than years past. However, they are still an opportunistic bunch as they’ve hauled in 10 picks on the year, led currently by Bradley McDougald and Shaquill Griffin with two apiece. McDougald also paces the team with 42 tackles.

Series History

Seattle holds a 26-24 all-time advantage, but the Bolts won their last contest in dramatic fashion, 30-21, back in 2014. Antonio Gates had a trio of touchdown receptions in that game. Meanwhile, the Chargers have posted five-straight games with 20-plus points against Seattle, and no team has won a game in the series by double digits since 1998.

By the Numbers

The Chargers rank sixth in total offense (402.7 yards per game), 10th in passing (278.3 ypg), 10th in rushing (124.4 ypg) and eighth in points (27.9). The Seahawks rank 26th in total offense (337.6 ypg), 27th in passing (202.9 ypg), fifth in rushing (134.7 ypg) and 17th in points (24.4).

Defensively, the Bolts rank 16th in total defense (362.3 ypg), 18th in passing (255.9 ypg), 16th in rushing (106.4 ypg) and 13th in points allowed (23.3). Seattle ranks fifth in total defense (327.3 ypg), fourth in passing (219.0 ypg), 17th in rushing (108.3 ypg) and fourth in points allowed (18.7).

Milestones on the Horizon

Philip Rivers needs one more start to extend his longest active starting streak to 200-consecutive regular-season games. He would become the 10th player since at least 1970 to have a starting streak of 200-plus games.

Rivers needs three touchdown passes to reach 20 for the season, which would be the most in his career through the first eight games to start a season.

Keenan Allen needs 11 receptions to reach 375 for his career and move into sole possession of No. 8 in team history, passing WR Wes Chandler (373) and WR Anthony Miller (374).

Antonio Gates needs two catches to reach 941 for his career and pass Hall of Fame WR Art Monk (940) for 19th in NFL history. He also needs five receptions to reach 944 for his career and pass WR Derrick Mason (943) for 18th in NFL history.

Melvin Gordon needs 101 rushing yards to pass Chuck Muncie (3,309) for sole possession of No. 6 in team history.

Gordon also needs six catches to pass Danny Woodhead (167) for No. 5 in career receptions among running backs in team history.

Gordon needs 35 receiving yards to pass Darren Sproles (1,400) for No. 7 in career receiving yards among running backs in team history.

Gordon is 64 yards shy of passing Danny Woodhead (1,429) for No. 6 in career receiving yards among running backs in team history.

Gordon needs one touchdown catch to become the seventh running back in Chargers history with 10 career receiving touchdowns. He needs two to tie Darren Sproles (11) for No. 6 in receiving touchdowns by a running back in Chargers history.

Gordon needs 130 scrimmage yards to pass Marion Butts (4,704) for No. 5 in team history by a running back.

Gordon needs three total touchdowns to pass Natrone Means (35) for No. 4 in team history by a running back.

Corey Liuget needs one sack to reach 25.0 for his career, passing John Parrella (24.5) for the most in team history among defensive tackles. He needs three sacks to reach 27.0 for his career, which would bring him to 10th in team history.

Melvin Ingram needs just 1.5 sacks to reach 40.0 for his career and become the seventh player in team history to reach that mark.

Noteworthy vs. the Seahawks

Philip Rivers is 2-1 all-time against Seattle. He has thrown seven touchdowns to only two interceptions. Rivers has tallied 920 yards through the air and thrown multiple touchdowns in each contest. In his last game at Seattle (Sept. 26, 2010), Rivers threw for 455 yards and two scores. The 455 yards is the second most of his career and his 53 attempts in that game is tied for the fourth most of his career.

Antonio Gates has caught four touchdowns on 16 receptions for 268 yards in three career games against the Seahawks. He equaled a career high with three touchdown receptions in the 2014 victory. Gates caught seven passes for 96 yards in the winning effort that day while capturing the only AFC Offensive Player of the Week award of his career.

Connections

Chargers NT Brandon Mebane played in Seattle for nine seasons (2007-15), including the team’s Super Bowl XLVIII victory.

LT Russell Okung was Seattle’s first-round draft choice in 2010 (sixth overall), playing his first six seasons for the Seahawks (2010-15).

Defensive Coordinator Gus Bradley held the same title in Seattle for three seasons (2009-12).

Seahawks guard D.J. Fluker was the Chargers’ first-round draft pick (11th overall) in the 2013 NFL Draft, and spent four seasons with the team through 2016.

Offensive Coordinator Brian Schottenheimer coached for the Chargers for three seasons (2002-05).

LB Emmanuel Ellerbee played in three games for the Chargers in 2018.

Broadcast Information

CBS – Kevin Harlan (play-by-play), Rich Gannon (analyst) and Steve Tasker (sideline)

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).

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