Sunday, April 22, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs vs. Chargers: Scouting report

The Chargers don't have the high-octane offense many are used to seeing. But their numerous weapons still make them a threat against the Bucs' porous secondary. In addition, San Diego plays formidable defense, making opponents earn every inch.

Chargers' top offensive player

Philip Rivers, right, is coming off a great game against the Chiefs during which he completed 18 of 20 passes. In his only game against the Bucs, in 2008, he tied a career high with four touchdown passes.

Chargers' top defensive player

Eric Weddle, left, has developed into one of the league's top safeties and is a key in the Chargers' run and pass defense. Since 2011, he has a league-leading nine interceptions.

Bucs must avoid …

An early deficit. The Chargers play an aggressive defense that will come after quarterback Josh Freeman if the Bucs trail by a big margin and have to consistently go to the air.

What the Chargers do best

Stop the run. Bucs running back Doug Martin will have his work cut out for him against a team allowing 84 yards a game. Only Cleveland's Trent Richardson has reached 100 yards against San Diego.

How you beat the Chargers

Affect their offensive balance. In the Chargers' four wins, Philip Rivers has averaged 27 passes. In the Chargers' four losses, he has averaged 38.8.

Projected starters

BUCS

OFFENSE

WR: Vincent Jackson

LT: Donald Penn

LG: Jeremy Zuttah

C: Ted Larsen

RG: Jamon Meredith

RT: Demar Dotson

TE: Dallas Clark

WR: Mike Williams

QB: Josh Freeman

RB: Doug Martin

FB: Erik Lorig

DEFENSE

LDE: Michael Bennett

DT: Gerald McCoy

DT: Roy Miller

RDE: Daniel

Te'o-Nesheim

SLB: Quincy Black

MLB: Mason Foster

WLB: Lavonte David

CB: E.J. Biggers

CB: Eric Wright

SS: Mark Barron

FS: Ronde Barber

special teams

PR: Roscoe Parrish

KR: Arrelious Benn

PK: Connor Barth

P/KO: Michael Koenen

Chargers

OFFENSE

WR: Malcolm Floyd

LT: Mike Harris

LG: Tyronne Green

C: Nick Hardwick

RG: Louis Vasquez

RT: Jeromey Clary

TE: Antonio Gates

WR: Seyi Ajirotutu

QB: Philip Rivers

RB: Ryan Mathews

FB: Le'Ron McClain

DEFENSE

LDE: Vaughn Martin

NT: Aubrayo Franklin

RDE: Corey Liuget

OLB: Shaun Phillips

ILB: Takeo Spikes

ILB: Donald Butler

OLB: Jarret Johnson

CB: Antoine Cason

CB: Quentin Jammer

SS: Atari Bigby

FS: Eric Weddle

special teams

PR: Eric Weddle

KR: Curtis Brinkley

PK/KO: Nick Novak

P: Mike Scifres

Prediction

Bucs 26, Chargers 24

Stat pack



1 p.m., Raymond James Stadium, Tampa | Radio: 620-AM, 103.5-FM | Line, O/U: Bucs by 3, 47½

Rushing yards

passing yards

total yards

Rushing yards allowed

passing yards allowed

total yards allowed

Bucs

Chargers

131.0 (9th) 105.9 (20th)

77.3 (1st) 84.0 (4th)



245.4 (13th) 217.3 (22nd)



321.1 (32nd) 237.8 (18th)



376.4 (9th) 323.2 (26th)



398.4 (29th) 321.8 (9th)

Injury report

Bucs — Questionable: WR Arrelious Benn (shoulder), S Cody Grimm (hamstring). Probable: DE Michael Bennett (shoulder), TE Luke Stocker (shoulder), WR Mike Williams (forearm), CB Eric Wright (Achilles).

Chargers — Doubtful: LB Antwan Barnes (hamstring). Questionable: T Jared Gaither (groin), DE Corey Liuget (hamstring), LB Demorrio Williams (abdominal). Probable: S Atari Bigby (quadriceps), CB Chris Carr (quadriceps), WR Robert Meachem (hamstring), LB Shaun Phillips (finger), WR Eddie Royal (hamstring).

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