Chargers Training Camp Dispatch- Aug. 4-5th: Offense Edition: Herbert Shines, But Defense Keeps Pace.

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COSTA MESA, Calif. — The Los Angeles Chargers battle between the offense and defense continued over the last two days of training camp. Each punch is answered in kind by the other side. When one side seems to have gotten the bested the other, a play is made to even the score.

Here are some observations about each positional group from Chargers training camp days 7 and 8.

Get the Defense Edition of Chargers Training Camp here.

Chargers Training Camp Positional Breakdown


Justin Herbert continues to be impressive. The one exception was late in Saturday’s practice he was sacked (he was actually knocked to the ground. A camp no-no), then his next pass was way off. It seemed like a miss communication between him and Mike Williams. His next pass was picked off.

A question I had about the Kellen Moore offense was if it would encourage Herbert to take more chances with the ball. If it would encourage him to use his arm talents like Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen do. There have been several instances over the last two practices at least that would leave me to believe it does. Not just with deep shots, but by threading the needle across the middle of the field. Has it resulted in some missed passes and interceptions? Yes. But the Chargers need to capitalize on his arm and, more importantly, remain a constant explosive play threat. The quarterbacks spent time on both days drilling accuracy on off-platform throws

It’s a part of complementary football, the interplay between rushing and passing the ball. The deep threat forces secondaries back, particularly the ‘strong’ safety. This lightens the box creating opportunities for the running game as well as for Keenan Allen (and Mike Williams too) in the slot and Gerald Everett too.

Max Duggan and Easton Stick have for the most part had equal chances with the second team during Chargers training camp. But Saturday was the Stick show. He had a pretty fantastic day. He had two clutch deep touchdown throws. One to Keelan Doss that took the top off the defense and the other a hotly contested throw to Qunetin Johnston to the left side. He also picked up a first down on a scramble when a play broke down. That play set up a short touchdown pass to John Hightower.

NFL: Los Angeles Chargers Training Camp
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Keenan Allen and Mike Williams are doing the things they do. They are still Herbert’s go-to receivers. This proves the obvious; the Chargers need them to be healthy.

Josh Palmer has been the go-to on the first team’s #3 wide receiver. His most impressive day of the two at Chargers Training Camp was Friday. He was able to beat Kenneth Murray and Asante Samuel Jr. by a good margin on two separate throws. On Saturday, Palmer bobbled a pass that was hauled in by Kenneth Murray and run in for a pick-six.

Quentin Johnston made a splash play each day. One, mention earlier, and the other on Friday. Herbert threw a 50 yard bomb which hit Johnston in stride. He then strode into the end zone. Johnston also participated in special teams drills. Even first rounders can’t escape that!

Gerald Everett missed both days due to illness. Both Tre’ McKitty and Donald Parham filled in on the first team and both made several key catches in 11-on-11 competitions.

Keelan Doss and John Hightower have emerged as the favorite targets for Easton Stick during Chargers training camp. They snagged routine catches and ones for big yardage gains. Seeing progress with the 4th and 3rd-year receivers is important.

Jalen Guyton remains on the physically unable-to-play list.

NFL: Los Angeles Chargers Rookie Minicamp
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Offensive Line

Both the first and second teams’ offensive line gave up sacks on Friday and Saturday. The first team gave up two tackles for loss on Friday to Sebastian Joseph-Day

Rashawn Slater was allowed a rest day on Friday but was back in action on Saturday.

Zion Johnson missed both days due to an illness. Illness has kept Slater, Everett, and Joey Bosa away from Chargers training camp. Rookie Jordan McFaddan filled in at left tackle both days.