The Chargers enter Week 14 with a tough matchup against the NFC East leading Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys are favored at home, but a lot of "experts" are picking the Chargers to win. Being a Chargers expert, I'm actually torn on my prediction for the outcome of Sunday's game. Let's break down some of the reasons why the Chargers will, or will not win this game.
REASONS TO BELIEVE
* They are on a 15-game winning streak in the month of December, while the Cowboys traditionally fall apart at the end of the season. The Chargers have made winning in December a habit they are not looking to break.
* Their offense is 3rd in the league in scoring, and possesses a potent passing game that has scored practically at will for most of the season.
* Philip Rivers to Jackson...or Gates...or Floyd...or Sproles...should lead to touchdowns.
* LaDainian Tomlinson...he can't wait to show off in his home state of Texas.
* They have a deep roster that continues to step up when it's needed the most. Tolbert, Boone, Johnson, and Siler are just a few of the guys who have stepped up to make big plays in big games.
CAUSES FOR CONCERN
* Our defensive line has as many starters on IR (or suffering from a significant injury) as we have active on the roster. With the offense the Cowboys bring to the table, you need your best players defending the line of scrimmage and forcing Tony Romo into making mistakes.
* The Cowboy's tough defense has not given up more than 21 points to any team except the NY Giants this year.
* Romo to Witten...the Chargers make bad tight-ends look good, and good tight-ends look great.
* LaDainian Tomlinson...he just ain't what he used to be.
* Weddle, Merriman, Boone, Nwagbuo, Phillips, and Castillo...all key players on their resurgent defense, and all are trying to play through injuries (or are already ruled out).
I have complete faith in the Chargers' ability to put points on the board this Sunday, but it's their defense that really leaves me guessing. The Cowboys have a pretty good -and balanced- offense of their own, and I'm less confident that we have the manpower on defense to stop them this week. You force Tony Romo into a turnover or two and it's anyone's ballgame. But if the Cowboys play it conservative and win the time of possession battle, we might be in for a long day.
Of the positive and negative factors affecting this week's game, which are the most concerning to you? Sound off and let your voice be heard!
Labels: NFL Season 2009 Week 14
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