Matchup Analysis: Los Angeles Chargers at Detroit Lions

Vegas Prediction

Vegas says: Chargers 25, Lions 23

FBG Projections

TeamRushYardsTDCompAttPass YdTDINT

Los Angeles Chargers Offense: overview

Points (vs AVG) (rank)Rush Yards (vs AVG) (rank)Pass Yards (vs AVG) (rank)
Chargers Offense30.0 (+5.8) (8)125 (+17) (10)310 (+46) (12)
Lions Defense27.0 (+2.8) (19)112 (+4) (17)275 (+11) (19)

Detroit Lions Offense: overview

Points (vs AVG) (rank)Rush Yards (vs AVG) (rank)Pass Yards (vs AVG) (rank)
Lions Offense27.0 (+2.8) (14)116 (+8) (14)361 (+97) (8)
Chargers Defense24.0 (-0.2) (14)203 (+95) (31)173 (-90) (6)

Chargers Rushing offense

Neutral matchup vs. the Lions defense.

The Chargers running backs made a convincing case that they can be just fine without Melvin Gordon in last week’s season opener. Austin Ekeler saw 75 percent of the snaps last week as he rushed 12 times for 58 yards and a touchdown while adding even more yards and touchdowns as a heavily utilized receiver. Justin Jackson saw just 25 percent of the snaps but averaged 9.5 yards per carry as he finished with 57 rushing yards from six attempts after his first run of the game went for 26 yards. Ekeler appeared to be the clear lead back and is very capable of assuming that role until the potential return of Gordon. Justin Jackson is more of a true rusher with limited upside in the passing game, but he will continue to serve in a secondary capacity with Ekeler leading the way here. The Chargers offensive line performed relatively well in run protection last week despite their obvious struggles against edge rushers on passing downs. Their strengths on the interior at center and guard were on full display while the glaring weakness will remain at the tackle position until left tackle Russell Okung can make it back on the field.

The reformed Lions defensive line had a solid showing as both Damon Harrison and Mike Daniels debuted with the Lions. Harrison did not quite live up to expectations as a run stopper as he played only 27 defensive snaps, showing signs of fatigue later in the game after missing most of the preseason. The rest of this line did a great job though, appearing to be in full control until the wheels fell off in the fourth quarter in which the Cardinals were able to reel off significant runs and it continued into overtime allowing David Johnson to finish with 82 yards after just 25 yards at halftime. A’Shawn Robinson, in particular, surprised with a great performance on the interior while Mike Daniels put up the same kind of solid performance we saw from him during his time with the Packers. Middle linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin also had a nice game in run defense despite his missteps in pass coverage. The strength of the Chargers offensive line is on the interior, but the Lions defensive line should still have the upper hand if Harrison can perform up to his usual standard.

Chargers Passing offense

Neutral matchup vs. the Lions defense.

Phillip Rivers finished with a great stat line in Week 1 with 333 yards and three touchdowns, but he also had a brutal interception while two of his touchdowns came from short passes to Austin Ekeler to help pad the stat line a bit. Rivers was definitely serviceable for this passing offense, but he was not making spectacular plays downfield. Keenan Allen was his top target with 10 looks, hauling in eight of those for 123 yards and a touchdown. Allen looked sharp, especially on his jump ball touchdown reception. Ekeler was the other primary playmaker for this offense as he hauled in six of seven targets for 96 yards and two touchdowns. Ekeler should continue playing a big role in the passing game for Rivers, especially considering the recent news that Hunter Henry will be sidelined with a knee injury for a good chunk of the season. Given the lack of Henry as a safety blanket, Ekeler will likely play an even larger role in providing Rivers with a viable option in the short passing game. WR2 Mike Williams was forced from last week’s game with a knee injury and did not return. He was reportedly feeling fine after the game, but his status is up in the air as he did not practice on Wednesday and head coach Anthony Lynn seems concerned. If Williams did miss this game, in addition to Henry, look for a high volume of targets going to both Ekeler and Allen as well as Travis Benjamin who would likely replace Williams would also see some looks..

The Lions secondary looked great for almost a full game last week until they fell apart in the fourth quarter as the Cardinals rallied back to secure a tie. Both Rashaan Melvin and Darius Slay played great games on the outside and should have advantages in their matchups against Travis Benjamin and Mike Williams (if healthy) this week. Slot cornerback Justin Coleman also played relatively well, but Keenan Allen matches up much more evenly with him and should have the best chance at finding success amongst the Chargers wideouts. The Lions defensive line should win in the trenches this week barring any of the fatigue issues we saw from them late in the last week’s overtime game. Extra pressure on Rivers may lead to more short passes forced to Austin Ekeler. The Lions linebackers struggled to contain David Johnson out of the backfield last week, so Ekeler could be in for close to a repeat performance from Week 1.

Lions Rushing offense

Neutral matchup vs. the Chargers defense.

Lions running backs had an uninspiring first game as Kerryon Johnson and C.J. Anderson combined for 84 yards on 27 carries in five quarters of play, averaging just over three yards per carry. This performance was particularly disappointing given the second-half game script with the Lions protecting their lead in the third and early fourth quarters. Johnson got the start and saw most of the snaps (50 snaps to Anderson’s 26) due to his involvement in the passing game. However, the split between Johnson and Blount was surprising even at 16-11 in favor of Johnson. Anderson has basically filled the exact role vacated by LeGarrette Blount from last season as he was often seen plodding along for short gains, offering little inspiration on the ground as he looks to serve primarily as a short-yardage and goal-line threat.

The Lions could have a great opportunity to get right if this Chargers run defense repeats their Week 1 performance against the Colts. Marlon Mack racked up 174 rushing yards and a touchdown against this group as he had his way throughout the entire game. The interior of this Chargers defensive line let them down as rookie Jerry Tillery had a poor debut on limited snaps while starters Brandon Mebane and Justin Jones were being easily bossed around in the trenches. The Chargers linebackers did not help much either as both Kyzir White or veteran Thomas Davis struggled to stop Marlon Mack. It is worth noting, however, that the Chargers were without one of their top run-defenders in middle linebacker Denzel Perryman as he was on the verge of recovering from offseason injuries. If Perryman can suit up this week, it will be a big boost as he was one of their top run-stoppers last season. Both Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram played fairly well last week and will also remain strengths for this unit. The Lions offensive line is a step down from the Colts, so it will be interesting to see how they hold up to what should be an improved Chargers defense if Perryman can suit up.

Lions Passing offense

Good matchup vs. the Chargers defense.

The Lions offense ran a surprisingly up-tempo attack as Matthew Stafford threw 45 times in five quarters of play, completing 27 of those passes for 385 yards and three touchdowns. This marked the most yard Stafford has passed for since the 2017 season. Stafford had pressure in his face for most of the game as he was actually pressured more than any other quarterback in Week 1. The Lions offensive line really struggled against a pair of solid Cardinals edge rushers last week, and they find no relieve with what should be an even better pair of edge rushers to square off against this Sunday. New slot receiver Danny Amendola finished as the top target with a whopping 13 as he served as a quick option for Stafford to go to in the face of all that pressure. Amendola may not be as open this week, however, as he squares off against one of the top slot cornerbacks in the league in Desmond King. It was tough for Stafford to find his outside receivers in Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones, as they both finished with just four receptions. Golladay was targeted over twice as often as Jones though, with none looks compared to the four to Jones. Who stole the show, however, was rookie tight end T.J. Hockenson. Finishing with 131 yards and a touchdown, Hockenson proved early that he was worth the first-round pick. His combination of size and athleticism created consistent mismatches in coverage as he looks to be an excellent option for Stafford moving forward.

The Chargers secondary held Jacoby Brissett to just 190 yards as they did an excellent job both in coverage and the pass rush. Both Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram may have struggled against the run last week, but they flourished on passing downs with one sack apiece against the Colts. These two should have a clear advantage in their matchups this week against a pair of unreliable Lions tackles, which should again make it difficult for Stafford to find his receivers downfield. Casey Hayward shadowed T.Y. Hilton last week and had a tough time, allowing Hilton to convert on eight of nine targets for 87 yards and two touchdowns. Kenny Golladay is still catching up to the talent and experience of T.Y. Hilton though, so while there is doubt around Hayward from Week 1, he still has the edge in this matchup against Golladay. T.J. Hockenson will have a size advantage in coverage nearly every week, but he has a particularly positive matchup here against safety Adrian Phillips. All in all, however, the Chargers defense should be set up for success as they represent a steep upgrade in talent above what the Lions faced in Arizona last week.

Lions vs QB

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)18 (+1.2)18 (+1.1)20 (+3.2)21 (+4.7)
1Kyler Murray89295430821313023.723.722.625.6

Philip Rivers (FanDuel: $7700, DraftKings: $6100)

1vs IND6425343333116028.328.324.927.9
2PROJ-Dodds23342641.80.912019.719.719.7 (H=45)19.7 (H=57)
2PROJ-Tremblay21322451.80.912018.718.718.7 (H=41)18.7 (H=52)
2PROJ-Bloom25352612111020.220.220.2 (H=47)20.2 (H=59)

Lions vs RB

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)20 (+1.5)19 (+2.0)20 (+1.7)19 (+1.4)
1David Johnson77188207655119.725.722.725.7
1Chase Edmonds1015010000.

Austin Ekeler (FanDuel: $7500, DraftKings: $6100)

1vs IND481258176.096233.439.436.439.4
2PROJ-Dodds12560.46.0550.415.921.918.9 (H=43)21.9 (H=68)
2PROJ-Tremblay14600.45.1470.314.92017.5 (H=37)20.0 (H=58)
2PROJ-Bloom12510.55.0450.4152017.5 (H=37)20.0 (H=58)

Justin Jackson (FanDuel: $6100, DraftKings: $4400)

1vs IND16657031.0406.
2PROJ-Dodds10400.31.7120. (H=13)9.3 (H=21)
2PROJ-Tremblay7280.22.2180. (H=10)8.6 (H=18)
2PROJ-Bloom7310. (H=7)6.4 (H=11)

Derek Watt (FanDuel: $4500, DraftKings: $3000)

1vs IND1524000.0000.
2PROJ-Dodds0000.000000.0 (H=0)0.0 (H=0)
2PROJ-Tremblay290.10.0001.51.51.5 (H=0)1.5 (H=1)
2PROJ-Bloom0000.000000.0 (H=0)0.0 (H=0)

Lions vs WR

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)20 (+4.0)23 (+11.6)24 (+10.0)26 (+14.9)
1Larry Fitzgerald85138113100017.325.321.328.3
1KeeSean Johnson681054600004.

Keenan Allen (FanDuel: $7700, DraftKings: $7600)

1vs IND53108.0123100018.326.322.329.3
2PROJ-Dodds7.1900.600012.619.716.2 (H=32)19.7 (H=45)
2PROJ-Tremblay5.5720.500010.215.713.0 (H=22)15.7 (H=31)
2PROJ-Bloom7.0740.500010.417.413.9 (H=24)17.4 (H=37)

Travis Benjamin (FanDuel: $4900, DraftKings: $3200)

1vs IND3132.01200001.
2PROJ-Dodds4.1540.40007.811.99.9 (H=21)11.9 (H=45)
2PROJ-Tremblay1.8260.20003.85.64.7 (H=5)5.6 (H=12)
2PROJ-Bloom3.0310.20004.37.35.8 (H=8)7.3 (H=19)

Dontrelle Inman (FanDuel: $4500, DraftKings: $3000)

1vs IND2711.0500000.
2PROJ-Dodds2.0280.2000465.0 (H=7)6.0 (H=14)
2PROJ-Tremblay0.680.10001.421.7 (H=1)2.0 (H=2)
2PROJ-Bloom3.0350.20004.77.76.2 (H=10)7.7 (H=22)

Mike Williams (FanDuel: $6100, DraftKings: $5500)

1vs IND4132.02900002.
2PROJ-Dodds0.000000000.0 (H=0)0.0 (H=0)
2PROJ-Tremblay2.5390.40006.38.87.6 (H=10)8.8 (H=15)
2PROJ-Bloom4.0550.50008.512.510.5 (H=19)12.5 (H=28)

Lions vs TE

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)6 (-5.4)5T (-8.4)6 (-6.9)5T (-8.7)
1Maxx Williams22111501.

Virgil Green (FanDuel: $4000, DraftKings: $2700)

1vs IND2711.0400.
2PROJ-Dodds1.5190.12.543.3 (H=3)4.0 (H=8)
2PROJ-Tremblay2.0220. (H=6)5.4 (H=13)
2PROJ-Bloom2.0160. (H=3)4.2 (H=8)

Hunter Henry (FanDuel: $6200, DraftKings: $4300)

1vs IND5854.06006108.010.0
2PROJ-Dodds0.000000.0 (H=0)0.0 (H=0)
2PROJ-Tremblay0.000000.0 (H=0)0.0 (H=0)
2PROJ-Bloom0.000000.0 (H=0)0.0 (H=0)

Lions vs PK

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)30 (+6.2)30 (+6.2)28 (+6.5) (+0.0)
1Zane Gonzalez4411131314.014.0

Mike Badgley (FanDuel: $--, DraftKings: $--)

1vs IND0000000.00.0

Lions vs TD

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)19T (+0.9)19T (+0.9)17T (+0.2)17T (+0.2)
1Arizona Cardinals2747730200777.07.0

Los Angeles Chargers (FanDuel: $4000, DraftKings: $3200)

1vs IND24.0037620000222.02.0
2PROJ-Dodds24.203892.70.90.600. (H=19)8.4 (H=24)
2PROJ-Tremblay22.753662.310.700. (H=20)8.6 (H=25)

Chargers vs QB

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)14 (-4.1)14 (-4.2)15 (-3.0)14 (-4.4)
1Jacoby Brissett6321271902039018.418.416.516.5

Matthew Stafford (FanDuel: $7000, DraftKings: $5200)

1@ ARI88274538530322033.533.527.631.6
2PROJ-Dodds24352561.60.8260.119.619.619.6 (H=49)19.6 (H=66)
2PROJ-Tremblay22352531.61280.119.519.519.5 (H=49)19.5 (H=65)
2PROJ-Bloom21292491.70.5211019.919.919.9 (H=50)19.9 (H=68)

Chargers vs RB

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)25 (+6.4)24 (+4.9)26 (+7.6)27 (+9.3)
1Marlon Mack48251741000023.423.425.428.4
1Nyheim Hines17413044401.

Kerryon Johnson (FanDuel: $6600, DraftKings: $5700)

1@ ARI501649022.01306.
2PROJ-Dodds14620.42.11401012.111.1 (H=19)12.1 (H=26)
2PROJ-Tremblay13600.41.61109.511.110.3 (H=17)11.1 (H=22)
2PROJ-Bloom17700.52.0120.111.813.812.8 (H=25)13.8 (H=33)

C.J. Anderson (FanDuel: $4900, DraftKings: $3500)

1@ ARI261135000.0003.
2PROJ-Dodds8350.21.0605.36.35.8 (H=8)6.3 (H=13)
2PROJ-Tremblay9370.20.0004.94.94.9 (H=6)4.9 (H=8)
2PROJ-Bloom10360.30.0005.45.45.4 (H=7)5.4 (H=10)

Ty Johnson (FanDuel: $4500, DraftKings: $3000)

1@ ARI816000.0000.
2PROJ-Dodds280.11.060232.5 (H=2)3.0 (H=4)
2PROJ-Tremblay1300.0000.30.30.3 (H=0)0.3 (H=0)
2PROJ-Bloom0000.000000.0 (H=0)0.0 (H=0)

J.D. McKissic (FanDuel: $4500, DraftKings: $3000)

1@ ARI500022.02402.
2PROJ-Dodds0001.4110. (H=2)3.1 (H=4)
2PROJ-Tremblay0001.5110. (H=2)3.2 (H=4)
2PROJ-Bloom0002.02102.14.13.1 (H=3)4.1 (H=7)

Chargers vs WR

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)19 (+1.7)19 (+2.3)19 (+2.2)18 (+0.6)
1T.Y. Hilton569887200020.728.724.728.7
1Deon Cain11223500003.

Kenny Golladay (FanDuel: $6600, DraftKings: $6600)

1@ ARI8694.042100010.
2PROJ-Dodds4.8660.4000913.811.4 (H=20)13.8 (H=28)
2PROJ-Tremblay5.2730.40009.714.912.3 (H=23)14.9 (H=32)
2PROJ-Bloom4.0460.40007119.0 (H=13)11.0 (H=19)

Marvin Jones (FanDuel: $5700, DraftKings: $4900)

1@ ARI7144.05601406108.010.0
2PROJ-Dodds3.8490.3130710.88.9 (H=15)10.8 (H=25)
2PROJ-Tremblay3.5480.31507.110.68.9 (H=15)10.6 (H=24)
2PROJ-Bloom4.0550.40007.911.99.9 (H=18)11.9 (H=29)

Danny Amendola (FanDuel: $5400, DraftKings: $3900)

1@ ARI47137.0104100016.423.419.926.4
2PROJ-Dodds4.4440.30006.210.68.4 (H=14)10.6 (H=30)
2PROJ-Tremblay4.6490.30006.711.39.0 (H=16)11.3 (H=34)
2PROJ-Bloom4.0420.20005.49.47.4 (H=11)9.4 (H=24)

Chargers vs TE

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)9T (-4.3)11 (-6.3)10 (-5.3)11 (-6.6)
1Jack Doyle43212002.

T.J. Hockenson (FanDuel: $6000, DraftKings: $3000)

1@ ARI6496.0131119.
2PROJ-Dodds4.5490.47.311.89.6 (H=16)11.8 (H=47)
2PROJ-Tremblay4.8480.47.2129.6 (H=16)12.0 (H=49)
2PROJ-Bloom4.0610. (H=21)13.1 (H=57)

Jesse James (FanDuel: $4000, DraftKings: $2600)

1@ ARI5111.01501.
2PROJ-Dodds1.0110. (H=1)2.7 (H=4)
2PROJ-Tremblay0.6700.71.31.0 (H=0)1.3 (H=1)
2PROJ-Bloom1.0120. (H=2)2.8 (H=4)

Chargers vs PK

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)8T (-2.8)8T (-2.8)11T (-2.5) (+0.0)
1Adam Vinatieri1312445.05.0

Matt Prater (FanDuel: $--, DraftKings: $--)

1@ ARI22339911.011.0

Chargers vs TD

Season FPPG allowed rank (vs AVG)22T (+1.9)22T (+1.9)17T (+0.2)17T (+0.2)
1Indianapolis Colts3043541100887.07.0

Detroit Lions (FanDuel: $4000, DraftKings: $3000)

1@ ARI27.0038751000777.07.0
2PROJ-Dodds27.004042.30.80.600. (H=12)6.5 (H=17)
2PROJ-Tremblay25.253472.10.90.600. (H=16)7.6 (H=22)