The Denver Broncos (2-4) and Los Angeles Chargers (2-4) meet in a pivotal divisional showdown this weekend as each team looks to change the direction of its season after a lackluster start. The Chargers are a three-point road favorite for the Sunday afternoon showdown with the total set at 45 points on SportsbBetting.com.
Los Angeles Chargers at Denver Broncos
Date: Sunday, Oct. 25 – 4:05 PM ET
Odds: Chargers -3
Los Angeles Chargers
Despite rookie quarterback Justin Herbert’s hot start that has him averaging more than 300 yards per game through the air and completing 67.4 percent of his passes, the Chargers have struggled to win games this year, or even score points at times.
Los Angeles boasts a high-powered offense that currently ranks fourth in the NFL in yards per game, but the Chargers haven’t been terribly successful at turning that offensive production into points, ranking just 21st in scoring offense. The lack of scoring combined with a statistically average defense has led the Chargers to just a 2-4 record so far this year, with only one of those wins coming with Herbert as the starting quarterback.
However, the Chargers do enter the Week 8 showdown with the Broncos riding a little momentum after beating the Jacksonville Jaguars 39-29 on the back of Herbert’s best game of his young career in which he threw for 347 yards and three touchdowns while also tallying 33 yards and a touchdown on the ground.
Things may not have gone the Chargers’ way thus far, but there is still time to salvage the season, especially if they can pull out a win in Denver on Sunday.
After an 0-3 start to the season, Denver was riding a small two-game winning streak heading into last week’s matchup with the Kansas City Chiefs, but that streak met an abrupt end with a 43-16 blowout loss at home.
While the Broncos had shown promise heading into the weekend despite mounting injuries to key players, the Chiefs dominated the game from start to finish while some of Denver’s key players struggled. Quarterback Drew Lock completed just 60 percent of his passes with no passing touchdowns and two interceptions while running back Melvin Gordon, who was active despite a DUI citation that could have led to a suspension, lost two crucial fumbles.
Despite the lopsided final score, however, defense was one silver lining for Denver. While the Chiefs did finish with 43 points, two of those touchdowns came by way of defense and special teams and their final offensive touchdown came in the final three minutes with the game well at hand and reserve players from both sides in the lineup. The Broncos held Kansas City to 286 total yards compared to 411 of their own and forced three punts, three field goals and a fumble.
All in all, last week’s game did not go the way Denver had hoped after stringing together a couple of wins, but the Broncos still have a chance to show that they have the team pointed in the right direction with a win over Los Angeles on Sunday.
For both the Broncos and Chargers, this game goes a long way in determining the outlook of the season. A win would put them just one game outside of a .500 record and potentially even in contention for a wild card spot, but a loss would put them in a distant last place in the division.
With identical records, these two teams have the same motivation and are both riding young quarterbacks with banged-up rosters. The big difference is, the Chargers have momentum, coming off the best game of their season so far while the Broncos are coming off of arguably their worst.
Take Chargers, who are finally trending in the right direction with everything clicking for Herbert and the offense right now.
Pick: Chargers -3