Culver City Observer -

Rivers Sparks Chargers To Beat Rams

Sports Reporter


August 31, 2017

Fred Altieri

Charger fans celebrate touchdown in the first quarter at the Coliseum

The Los Angeles Chargers finally got a chance to play their starters for a whole quarter and the results were very impressive. The Chargers scored three touchdowns in the first quarter to take a 21-0 lead and that was all they would need versus the Los Angeles Rams, holding on for a 21-19 win at the Coliseum before an announced crowd of 58,561.

The Chargers have a good first team on both sides of the ball. Quarterback Philip Rivers looked sharp as usual and has led the Chargers to touchdowns on all three of his offensive drives this preseason. On Saturday night Rivers was 6 for 6 for 85 yards and one touchdown. The offense hums when Rivers is on the field.

As head coach Anthony Lynn stated about Rivers: "When he is on the field he' s a leader and he gets us in the right place, right positions, and you know, we move the ball. Our first unit is not just ' Phil.' But our first unit has moved the ball well in this preseason."

The Chargers made big plays in the first quarter, which were the difference in this game. Rivers hit speedy wide receiver Travis Benjamin for a 45-yard bomb for a TD to give the Chargers the early 7-0 lead. The Rams drove down to the Chargers seven-yard line, but on third and goal Joey Bosa came through with a sack and fumble, which was picked up by a rumbling Melvin Ingram for a 76-yard return for a touchdown.

A few plays later Chargers defensive back Jason Verrett picked off a dying quail pass from Jared Goff and the Chargers had a first and ten on their own 46. Rivers marched the team 54 yards in nine plays to finish off the first quarter scoring. "Obviously, we' ve had some good drives, but we got a long way to go, a lot room to improve and its been a positive training camp and preseason so far," said Rivers.

The final preseason game at San Francisco will be without starters on offense and defense. There is no point in playing the starters for this final game. This will be an opportunity for the reserves to earn roster spot and develop some consistency.

Quarterback Cardale Jones will get a chance to put some points on the scoreboard. Jones has been shut out through the first three preseason games. Lynn: "I thought he (Jones) took a step forward today. I wish that we had caught a couple more of those balls, but I thought he played better tonight."

So there will be one more week of preseason games and then we can get to the real action. For those who play fantasy football and are going through with the draft in the next week, here are three Charger offensive stars to consider:

Philip Rivers: Over the past four seasons, Rivers has thrown for over 4,000 yards each season and has averaged 31 TD passes per season. He has started 185 straight games in the NFL. He is a quarterback you can count on in fantasy football to be there every week and perform well. If he can keep the turnovers to a minimum, he is an excellent choice at quarterback.

Fred Altieri

Charger defensive lineman enter the L.A. Coliseum: (L-R) Tenny Palepoi (95), Corey Liuget (94), Brandon MeBane (92) and Caraun Reid (91)

Keenan Allen: He is fantasy gold if he is healthy. In 2015 in just eightgames Allen caught 67 passes for 730 yards and four touchdowns. He was targeted 89 times. Those are amazing numbers and if he can come close to them in 2017 he is going to be a very valued player on fantasy football rosters. On Saturday night against the Rams Allen caught all four passes from Rivers for 37 yards. Three of those four catches produced first downs. Rivers and Allen just clique well.

Melvin Gordon: He is the main Chargers back and healthy he should easily run for more than 1,000 yards. Saturday Night in the first two offensive drives with Rivers Gordon rushed for 36 yards on eight carries and a touchdown. Gordon is easily the best running back on the Chargers and should get at least 20 carries per game. He will be very good if he stays healthy.


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