By Dave Thomas
After a wild 33-30 victory on the road in Philadelphia last weekend, the San Diego Chargers take their act to Nashville this weekend, meeting the Tennessee Titans in Music City on Sunday.
Piling up more than 500 yards in total offense in the win over the Eagles, San Diego (1-1) looks to keep things going against a Tennessee (1-1) squad that it demolished a season ago at home, 38-10.
Preparing for the Titans will be different than it was for the Eagles, as Tennessee features much less of an offensive threat, though the Titans also provide a stiffer defensive challenge for Philip Rivers and Co. Although the Titans gave up 30 points to Houston last Sunday in a 30-24 overtime loss, they held Pittsburgh to a mere nine points at Heinz Field in the season opener, beating the Steelers 16-9.
Tennessee, which hopes to compete with defending champ Houston and Indianapolis for the AFC South crown, will look to use more ball control against the Chargers, with running back Chris Johnson likely to get a hefty share of the carries. Johnson is likely to get the load of work, as backup running back Shonn Greene did not participate in practice this week.
Floyd, Fluker Miss Practice
For the Chargers, one of the key areas of concern coming into this season was the wide receiver position, as injuries and subpar play at the position last year cost the Bolts some potential wins.
In the win at Philadelphia last weekend, veteran wide receiver Malcom Floyd had to be carted off the field after taking a solid hit from Eagles linebacker Demeco Ryans. Floyd, who team categorized as having a neck sprain, did not participate in practice this week.
Also on the offensive side of the ball, top draft pick D.J. Fluker (Alabama) was held out of practice this week for what was noted as a concussion. Wider receiver-kick returner Eddie Royal, who scored three touchdowns in the win over Philadelphia, did practice this week despite a wrist injury.
A question mark for the Bolts coming into the regular season was the health of rookie linebacker Manti Te’o.
The Notre Dame product suffered a toe injury in the preseason, leaving him to miss the first two games of the regular season. According to the Chargers, Te’o had limited practice with the squad this week.
Lastly, cornerback Shareece Wright (hamstring injury) and linebacker Donald Butler (groin injury) were also limited in their practice participation this week, according to the team.
After visiting the Titans, the Chargers are then home Sept. 29 for a meeting with NFC East leading Dallas.
Taking a quick peek at the AFC West heading into Sunday’s action, the surprising Kansas City Chiefs lead the division at 3-0, with Denver sitting at 2-0, followed by Oakland tied with the Chargers for last at 1-1.
- Corey Liuget (hamstring)
- Eddie Royal (wrist)
Donald Butler (groin)
D.J. Fluker (concussion)
Shareece Wright (hamstring)
- Te’o Manti (foot)
- Malcom Floyd (neck)
For more Chargers news and updates, visit Chargers Central.
Dave Thomas has been covering the sports world since his first job as a sports editor for a weekly newspaper in Pennsylvania back in 1989. He has covered a Super Bowl, college bowl games, MLB, NBA and more. His work can be found on Examiner.com.