Friday, September 29, 2023

Los Angeles Chargers Week 4 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2023 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a Week 4 roundup for the Los Angeles Chargers in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 14

Biggest issue on offense: Running the ball

After gaining 233 yards in the season-opening loss to the Miami Dolphins, the Chargers' rushing offense has turned nonexistent. They have gained 91 yards on 36 carries over the last two games. In Sunday's win over the Vikings, they averaged two yards per carry against a team allowing the third most rushing yards in the NFL coming into the game. The caveat is that the Chargers have been without starting running back Austin Ekeler, who has missed the last two weeks with an ankle injury. His return could turn this unit around. -- Kris Rhim -- Rank: 15

Even in a much-needed win, the Chargers left the door open for criticism with porous pass defense (again) and a questionable decision by Brandon Staley. Going for it on fourth-and-1 near his own end zone while leading by four late in the game was a wild risk, for sure; though his defense bailed him out, I wonder what the message would have been had it failed. Between that and Mike Williams' season-ending ACL injury, it feels like the Chargers barely got to enjoy a road victory. All of this really overshadowed a special performance from Justin Herbert and Keenan Allen, doing it late without Williams or Austin Ekeler available. The Bolts host the Raiders this week, followed by the bye, which might not come at the worst time.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 22

They saved their season by winning at Minnesota, but Brandon Staley did what he could to lose the game. Why did he go for it late?

USA Today -- Rank: 21

Currently the league' most accurate (74.4% completion rate) and careful (0 INTs) passer, QB Justin Herbert just notched his 100th career TD pass. Too bad he won't be throwing any more this year to injured WR Mike Williams.

The Athletic -- Rank: 16

QB confidence rating: 8

Justin Herbert is so talented that Chargers fans and the rest of the NFL want any reason to believe. He gave it to them Sunday: 40-for-47 for 405 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions. At 15,028 career yards, the 25-year-old is the second-fastest player to surpass 15,000, behind only Mahomes.

FOX -- Rank: 17

It's hard to even imagine how toxic the discourse would be if Brandon Staley's ill-fated decision to go for it on fourth-and-1 from his own 24-yard line had dropped the Chargers to 0-3. Take a win any way you can get one, but this team remains just as chaotic in victory as it was in defeat.

Yahoo! -- Rank: 18

Mike Williams' torn ACL is a huge injury, though one the Chargers should be able to navigate. Josh Palmer is underrated and he'll see a bigger role. It puts a bright light on rookie first-round draft pick Quentin Johnston, who has played just 22% of the Chargers' offensive snaps and has just 26 yards. If Johnston emerges, the Chargers can survive the Williams injury. It's a big spot for the rookie, and how Johnston responds could determine where the Chargers' season is going.

PFT -- Rank: 20

The Chargers out Vikings-ed the Vikings.

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