In a crucial matchup, Green Bay Packers’ quarterback Jordan Love faces the formidable challenge of protecting the football against the Los Angeles Chargers’ potent pass rush, known for their ability to strip-sack opposing quarterbacks.
Despite being a first-year starter, Love has demonstrated commendable awareness and ball security under pressure, with only four fumbles in nine games, including one that was an out-of-bounds throwaway. This stands in stark contrast to other quarterbacks like Aaron Rodgers in 2008, who fumbled 10 times, and current Cardinals-turned-Vikings quarterback Joshua Dobbs, who leads the league with 11 fumbles this season.
The Chargers, leading the NFL with eight fumble recoveries, boast two premier quarterback hunters capable of creating turnovers: Khalil Mack and Joey Bosa.
Mack, ranked seventh in the league with 9.0 sacks, has excelled at strip-sacks throughout his career, with three this season, just one behind the league leader. Since entering the NFL in 2014, Mack ranks second with 22 sack-strips and 28 forced fumbles overall.
Bosa, tied for 15th in the league with 6.5 sacks, leads the NFL with 10 strip-sacks on third down since entering the league in 2016. While he has forced only one fumble this season, his ability to strip-sack quarterbacks is a constant threat.
Coach Matt LaFleur emphasized that the Chargers’ entire defense is adept at creating turnovers, not just Mack and Bosa. Safety Alohi Gilman has also been effective at ripping the ball away from opponents.
The Packers’ offensive line, particularly tackles Rasheed Walker and Zach Tom, faces the challenge of keeping Mack and Bosa away from Jordan Love. In the previous game against the Steelers, the offensive line performed admirably against T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith. Walker and Tom will need to replicate that success against the Chargers’ dynamic pass rush.
Left tackle Rasheed Walker and right tackle Zach Tom did a superb job against the game-wrecking Steelers tandem of T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith. According to Pro Football Focus, Tom allowed zero sacks and three pressures, and Walker allowed zero sacks and five pressures. Watt had the game’s only sack.
Protecting the football is paramount for Love this week, and offensive coordinator Adam Stenavich acknowledges the challenges posed by the Chargers’ pass rush. With their ability to overload sides, work defensive schemes, and create favorable matchups, the Chargers present a formidable task for the Packers’ offensive line.
In a game where ball security is crucial, the Packers’ ability to neutralize the Chargers’ pass rush will be pivotal for Jordan Love and the team’s success.