Found October 03, 2013 on Fox Sports Southwest:
Let's breakdown a few more moments in the Chargers game of great interest before we close the books and move on to Denver. Let's take one offensive situation and one defensive situation today and see what we can find. Offensively, I want to show you "13 Personnel" which, as you have guessed, is 1 RB, 1 WR, and 3 TEs. This is an alignment that makes the defense bring 9 in the box. It screams running the ball, but the second the 9th man heads down into the box, you have opportunities downfield with Dez against a soft corner and a deep, deep safety. They ran 13 personnel on 2 snaps on Sunday. These are also the 2 snaps in which Gavin Escobar played. Both were in the same drive and both were quite successful. 2 snaps, 49 yards, 1 Touchdown, and it was all on basically the exact same play - just flipped to the other side. Then, they never returned to it. Play 1 Triple TE to the bottom, Dez to the top. The Chargers show 8, but the 9th man is creeping down as Romo looks over the defense. The Cowboys will move Hanna in motion to H-Back, in front of Murray before the snap. Here at the snap, you can see the 9th man is now there. The Chargers must remain close to the line until they know run or pass, thus giving Dez all sorts of room to work with against a deep corner and a deeper safety. Here are the 3 routes, with 2 of them being check downs as Romo's primary plan is to hit Dez on a deep-in. The corner over Dez is playing outside leverage and the safety is just making sure this doesn't get too messy. The linebackers are worried about Escobar (maybe too worried) and Murray is going to slide out behind Bryant into the flat. Dez has his 12-15 yards and has a 5 yard circle in every direction for Romo to hit him. This is incredibly easy. Play 2 - Just a few plays later on the same drive, look what the Cowboys have here. 3 TEs to the right, Dez to the left. The Chargers are a little more conservative to watch Dez, but they still have to respect the 8 OL alignment and not give Murray too much space. Here at the snap, look at the exact same routes and the same 9 Chargers in deep. They remain a bit more skeptical that the Cowboys will actually run here, and thus the LBs get into their drop quicker to close off the same exact route that Dez is going to run - his DIG. This, by the way, is without question to me (although I should check with Jake Kemp and his Bryant study) Dez's best and most dominating route. Look at Romo's pocket and look at his window to hit Dez. It is a smaller window, but still not a real tough throw for the Cowboys to complete. The beauty of this one is that Dez is hit in stride and able to elude everyone on the way to the end-zone. My only conclusion on looking at the success of these 2 plays is that they need to run out of this look to keep the windows big in the secondary. If you are going to show "13" to Denver, they will be ready for the Dig to Bryant. But, some strong runs or some variance in the routes will make this a very interesting personnel grouping. Play 3 - Now, a little game called, where are my safeties? This game is necessary, because I am guessing just about all of us were asking this question when it appeared the Cowboys were playing without any safeties on the 56-yard Touchdown to Gates in the 4th Quarter that really made the game a difficult proposition. Contrary to my first belief, the Cowboys did have 2 safeties on the field on this play. Here is how they lined up and what their assignments appeared to be. Wilcox to the top was heading downhill to sit on the hookcurl to Gates that had been going all day and Church was going to slide over and play single-high and help the match-up in most need. Sounds good, but once the snap happened, we saw that did not work out as planned. Again, look at Wilcox. He is sitting on the route that he is sure Gates is about to run. Church is watching the situation to the top of the screen, trusting that Carr (at the bottom) has his guy locked down and just helping the side with 3 threats. Again, it all looks fine here. Here is where we see 3 real issues. 1) Scandrick appears to have passed his man in the slot on to the safety help. This requires Church's immediate's attention. We have seen this issue against zones being a killer - several receivers all running verticals. Playing zone is not that difficult if the offense is sending one high and one low. You just make the clear designations and everyone gets their man. But, what if nobody is shallow and everyone is deep? Then, it gets tricky because the safety is not able to take everyone's man. 2) Wilcox is covering nobody and appears frozen in his tracks. I have no idea what his plan is here (it almost looks like he is now playing a shallow zone for Matthews out of the backfield - but so does Scandrick and Sims. That is a lot of personnel dedicated to 1 RB, which shows you how 4 verticals can make you look silly in a zone), but it screams that he is a rookie and had no real plan after his first instinct led him down a poor path. And 3) Both safeties are beyond the hash marks on Rivers' left. Therefore, he knows he has man-to-man with BrownCarr at the bottom or GatesLee in the middle. That is an easy choice and despite Gates not being "open", Rivers considers this close enough and throws to Gates in these situations all of the time and expects Gates to win. Why? Because he usually does. Especially against a LB. So, what coverage are the Cowboys playing? It looked like Man-Free at first, but now I am pretty sure it was a full zone (based on Claiborne's technique and all of the shallow players squared at Rivers) and Lee just knew he couldn't hand off his man and decided to improv into man on the fly. Honestly, with Wilcox and Scandrick, it sure looks like someone isn't positive what they are supposed to do. My sources tell me that ultimately, this is a bust on Church. He is trying to help out the slot guy, but in this zone, Claiborne is responsible for the slot and Church needs to stay high and prevent Gates from that opportunity. This is not sound coverage and the single-high safety cannot be wrong. Rivers and Gates thank you for another easy conversion for a Touchdown - Tomorrow, mailbag and Denver preview.

Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates: Dangerous Record Combination

Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates are one of the best quarterback to receiving duos in NFL history. The chemistry they have together is phenomenal and year after year their production is showing that to be true. Gates has always been Rivers “safety blanket,” if you will, throwing to him when in desperate situations or for important conversions. Last Sunday against the Dallas Cowboys...

Philip Rivers deserves some attention after solid Week 4; September (and other standout performers)

Philip Rivers, QB I could sit here and rant about how Peyton Manning is leading what is speculated to be the most incredible season in history, but then I would be regurgitating the same topic you’ll find on the front page of absolutely every sports circulation out there this week. That said, I’ll surely save you the trouble of dragging your tired fantasy obsessed eyes through...

Former Charger killed himself in front of his wife and children

As a federal law enforcement officer, I couldn’t imagine something to this nature.  Paul Oliver was a former supplemental draft pick for the San Diego Chargers, who killed himself last week. The Police report was a fascinating one, which is just wrong and horrible, especially for the family.  The report that both Oliver and his […]

QB Philip Rivers named AFC offensive player of the week

According to Michael David Smith of, San Diego Chargers QB Philip Rivers has been named the AFC offensive player of the week for the second time this season.

Chargers Send Malcom Floyd and Dwight Freeney To Injured Reserve

The San Diego Chargers have sent WR Malcom Floyd and OLB Dwight Freeney to injured reserve ending their 2013 seasons. Floyd had been dealing with a neck injury since week two. Malcom is 32 years old and has had a nice career with the Bolts but probably will not be back with them in 2014. Injuries have been an issue for Floyd as he’s only completed one 16 game season back in 2009...

Chargers place Floyd, Freeney on injured reserve

The San Diego Chargers placed wide receiver Malcom Floyd and outside linebacker Dwight Freeney on the reserve-injured list, the team announced Tuesday. Floyd sprained his neck against the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 2, while Freeney hurt his quadriceps injury in Sunday's win against the Dallas Cowboys. Also, the Chargers signed wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins and added outside...

San Diego Chargers: 2013 Week 5 NFL Power Rankings (#19)

Last week: 26 (+7) Record: 2-2 The job Head Coach Mike McCoy has done with the offense in his first season with the team is amazing. Despite a largely replacement level supporting cast around a declining Philip Rivers, McCoy has the Chargers moving the ball at an incredible rate, moving the chains on 82% of opportunities, only behind Denver and Indianapolis. The resurgence of Philip...

Chargers' Dwight Freeney out for season

What was feared is now decided. Chargers linebacker Dwight Freeney is out for the year. The 12th-year veteran will require season-ending surgery to repair a torn quad tendon a source said Tuesday. He was placed on injured reserve the team signing outside linebacker Thomas Keiser from the practice squad in a corresponding move. Freeney tore his quad late in the second quarter Sunday...

Chargers' Malcom Floyd done for the year

The San Diego Chargers have decided to place WR Malcom Floyd on season ending IR after suffering  a scary neck injury a couple weeks ago against the Eagles.  Floyd went and got a second opinion from Robert Watkins a spine specialist, which led to him being put on IR.  The Chargers don't want to take the risk of further injuring the neck, but according to Floyd's agent...

Rivers prospering in no-huddle, no-hurry offense

(Eds: APNewsNow. Will be updated. With AP Photos.) By BERNIE WILSON AP Sports Writer It turns out that Philip Rivers didn't need to be fixed after two tough seasons. He just needed to be plopped into the no-huddle, no-hurry offense that rookie coach Mike McCoy and his top assistants drew up. Rivers has thrown for 400 yards twice in four games after doing it three times in his...

What the Chargers Learned From the Win over the Cowboys

Here are five lessons we learned from Sunday’s big 30-21 win over the Dallas Cowboys. Rivers’ September to Remember Statistically speaking, Philip Rivers just completed the finest opening month of his career.  His 118.8 passer rating for the month is a career-high, topping his previous mark in 2008 of 109.8.  In four games, Rivers has completed 105 of 142 (73.9%) for 1,199...

Chargers' Malcom Floyd placed on season-ending IR

A neck sprain Malcom Floyd suffered last month will end his 2013 season. The Chargers placed the wide receiver on injured reserve Tuesday. Veteran wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins was signed in his place after working out for the team last week. Floyd 32 is under contract through 2015. His agent Buddy Baker said he is expected to make a full recovery in time for next season. On Sept...

5 Lessons We Learned About the San Diego Chargers This Year

Here are five lessons we learned from Sunday’s big 30-21 win over the Dallas Cowboys. Rivers’ September to Remember Statistically speaking, Philip Rivers just completed the finest opening month of his career.  His 118.8 passer rating for the month is a career-high, topping his previous mark in 2008 of 109.8.  In four games, Rivers has completed 105 of 142 (73.9%) for 1,199...

Sit Em. Start Em – Week Five

Sit Em. Start Em – Week Five Start Em Philip Rivers – Rivers continues to impress this season and is looking like a must-start against the lowly Oakland Raiders. He is making the most out of the weapons at his disposal and has already resuscitated the fantasy values of Eddie Royal and Antonio Gates. Rivers comes in as a top-six option this week after putting up top-five numbers...

You Interpret: ESPN Refers To Danny Woodhead As “Working Man’s Darren Sproles”

So, ESPN, what are you trying to say here?  Is Darren Sproles not a hard worker?  Does Danny Woodhead work harder than Darren Sproles?  Perhaps there are some racial undertones here as well.  Either way, interesting take on the Chargers running back who is a diminutive dynamo. [sportsgrid] Article found on: Next Impulse Sports
All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.