GAME PLAN: If the Broncos can't stop the run this week, nothing else may matter. LaDainian Tomlinson had two big games against the Broncos last year. Every running back that has faced Denver this year has had success. The Broncos have to be more sound tackling than they have been for the first month of the season.
If the run defense keeps them in the game, the Broncos will have to put some points on the board. That hasn't been easy. The Broncos have moved the ball but haven't scored many points, which is another reason they are on a two-game losing streak.
MATCHUPS TO WATCH: Chargers RB LaDainian Tomlinson vs. Broncos MLB D.J. Williams. The Broncos haven't stopped the run well all season. That's not entirely on Williams, who is making the transition from outside linebacker to the middle, but if Williams has a big day, it would help Denver contain Tomlinson.
Broncos C Tom Nalen vs. Chargers NT Jamal Williams. Williams has a sore knee. He has given the Broncos some problems over the years, and the veteran Nalen will have to keep him from getting penetration so the Broncos running game can function smoothly.
Chargers LT Marcus McNeill vs. Broncos DE Simeon Rice. McNeill has a knee injury and will probably be limited in practice. Rice joined the Broncos' starting lineup last week, and he hasn't had a huge game yet. He could take advantage if McNeill is slowed by the injury.
INJURY IMPACT: RB Travis Henry wasn't walking with much of a limp Wednesday, but he didn't practice because of a sore ankle and knee. The Broncos will continue to evaluate him as the week goes on. They set no timetable for his return to practice this week.
S Hamza Abdullah has already been ruled out of this week's game with a hip injury. He could return after next week's bye.
WR Javon Walker didn't practice Wednesday. The Broncos are being cautious with him and don't know when he will practice this week.
RB Mike Bell, who missed last week's game with a concussion, returned to practice Wednesday in a limited role. WR Brandon Stokley, who has a calf injury, was a limited participant in Wednesday's practice.
S John Lynch completed a full practice Wednesday and declared
himself ready for Sunday's game at San Diego. Lynch has a groin injury.
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