Saturday, October 9, 2021

Los Angeles Chargers Week 5 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2021 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the Los Angeles Chargers rank in terms of average, best and worst:

  • Average ranking: 7.4 (8th)
  • Best ranking: 6th (The Athletic)
  • Worst ranking: 9th (ESPN)

Below you will find a Week 5 roundup for the Chargers in our consensus 2021 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 9

Biggest surprise: CB Asante Samuel Jr.

Why it's a surprise: Nobody knew exactly what they were getting when Samuel was drafted with the 47th pick. He's not his dad, but he has surprised just about everyone with interceptions in consecutive games (the first off of Dak Prescott in Week 2, the second off of Patrick Mahomes in the red zone in Week 3). Samuel has four passes defensed and was named Defensive Rookie of the Month but says "I've still got to grind." He's already made a name for himself in the Class of 2021. -- Shelley Smith -- Rank: 7

After the Chargers finished off the Raiders to move into a three-way tie atop the AFC West, they received a high compliment from an unlikely source. "They're going to go places this year," Raiders coach Jon Gruden told the assembled media at SoFi Stadium after the Bolts' 28-14 win. "They're going to be a force to be dealt with." Justin Herbert delivered another star turn with three touchdown passes, but the QB didn't do it alone. Los Angeles got huge performances from running back Austin Ekeler (145 total yards, 2 TDs) and the entire defense, which held the Raiders to season lows in production across the board. Fill up that stadium, Chargers fans!

CBS Sports -- Rank: 7

They beat up on the Raiders Monday night. If the defense plays like that, they will be a real threat in the AFC.

USA Today -- Rank: 8

Fun team to watch, especially coach Brandon Staley's utilization of analytics and the occasional trick play. And the results are finally aligning with the talent.

The Athletic -- Rank: 6

With the smoke from the garbage fire in Jacksonville distracting so much of the NFL news cycle, it's such a cleansing breath of fresh air to see one of the league's best young quarterbacks paired with a head coach who empowers him. Justin Herbert has been sensational, but shares the love with Austin Ekeler, who is second to Derrick Henry in running back yards from scrimmage; and Derwin James, who iced the game with his first interception since 2018.

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