The Chargers looked different last night.
The offense was creative, but limited. That's expected when you are playing against the Broncos. You saw some great young players trying to fill the void created by injuries to the projected stars.
Hunter Henry looks like he could be a damn fine tight end.
Melvin Gordon almost broke the 100 yard barrier against the vaunted Denver defense.
Neither of them had the effect that Joey Bosa had.
In the first 4 games, the chargers had total 7 sacks and 14 total hits on the QB. Bosa was not playing yet as he got in shape and recovered from his Hamstring issue.
Since Bosa came back, he as 2 sacks and 4 QB hits by him. More importantly, the team has 5 sacks and 10 hits. That is a 70% increase on the rate of sacks and hits.
The question is, why would that be the case?
The Chargers base Defense runs a 3 man front. The hardest position to fill in the 3-4 is end. In the past, the Chargers have defaulted to space eaters at that position. That helps you against the run and keeps your linebackers running free, but what happens when you can put a player out there who is more complete? More to the point, what happens when you replace Darius Philon with Joey Bosa?
You replace a replacement level player with a potential star. A potential star that plays with a rare motor. He isn't Von Miller. He is not going to dip his shoulder and come around the corner so fast that he scorches the earth. He will knock a tackle off balance and then attack a crease in your blocking scheme.
Last night we started to see the Chargers running D-Line stunts with him as the looper and the internal linemen had no chance to handle him with a running start. This could be the defense characteristic that their opponents have to gameplan for.
The last time the Chargers could say they had that, Junior Seau was young.