2. Use Austin Ekeler like he is Melvin Gordon
Melvin Gordon was hit and did not go down well on a jet sweep against the Arizona Cardinals that had every Chargers fan gasping for air. Gordon left the game with a noticeable injury in his knee and every Chargers fan held the same collective “hear we go again” thought.
However, the news was positive as Gordon only suffered an MCL sprain, not an MCL tear, which it could have been. While this is still an injury, Gordon is going to play again at some point this year and will be evaluated on a week-by-week basis.
The earliest I can see Gordon returning is next week against the Cincinnati Bengals. However, with the Bengals being a beat up version of themselves, the team very well could opt to hold Gordon out until the next week against the Kansas City Chiefs.
Ekeler is not your typical back up running back, though and has already been fully implemented in this offense alongside Gordon. While he might not be as purely talented, Ekeler is a huge threat in both the run and pass game and has been great thus far this season.
Ekeler is averaging 5.8 yards per carry this season on 70 attempts while adding 354 receiving yards on 32 receptions.
The Chargers cannot baby Ekeler and need to use him as the team would Melvin Gordon. While Philip Rivers and the passing game has been exceptional this season, the team cannot forget about the run, especially as a road team that is going to need to control the pace of the game.