Chargers ready for anything

The Jets' offense is not nearly as scary as the potential of the defense. The Chargers feel they can move the ball at will against anyone but will face a stiff test this Sunday in the Meadowlands.

The Jets have fumbled an incredible 22 times through seven games but own a negative three turnover ratio – thanks to a defense that is looking for the big play.

While the offense hasn't been clicking, the defense can be formidable. They have three defensive linemen who were first round picks and each presents a problem, particularly if the Chargers go to war with a patchwork of an offensive line.

Dewayne Robertson will be a truckload for Bob Hallen and Shaun Ellis and John Abraham will present problems for Leander Jordan – expected to start at left tackle for Roman Oben.

"He will have his work cut out for him," head coach Marty Schottenheimer said of Jordan. "We have seen him and his progress and development. I am not going to say we are going to have him block John Abraham by himself because we would not do that if Roman Oben was standing over there."

And linebacker Jonathan Vilma, winner of Defensive Rookie of the Year last season, leads the team in tackles.

Their ability to rush the passer has not been compromised by the loss of Jason Ferguson. While they only have 12 sacks through seven games, the correlation between the pass rush and the pass defense, a point Schottenheimer often points out, is working well – evidenced by the ten interceptions by the squad.

The expectation is the Jets will bring a heavy pass rush this weekend, similar to the defense the Eagles employed to slow down the running game and push quarterback Drew Brees into making quick decisions. There will be times when they sit back in zone as well and try to cover the multitude of weapons.

"Get a lead," Jets head coach Herman Edwards said. "Then they play to our hand. We can use our rushers, we can use what we do in the secondary as far as pressure to create turnovers. When you don't get into that game they pound on you and they're at third and two, you can't sack the QB."

"They have the ability to do both," Brees admitted. "Going into the Philadelphia game they had not shown a lot of pressure and they pressured us every down. We know they can do anything and we have a pretty good idea about what they will do."

The Chargers don't want to change their plan of attack, as they have done in games this year. If they change the plan of attack, they are allowing the defense to dictate what they do. That is not an option says Brees:

"We have to worry about ourselves. We feel like we have an answer for everything."

That does not rule out adjustments if the pressure is coming and the Chargers are not supplying a valid answer. Given the Jets' rush defense to date, it may be best to attack them via the ground game. If that fails because of run blitzes on a beat up offensive line, Brees is confident he can get the ball in the end zone.

"They are a smart team," said Brees. "They are a patient defense. You have to take what they give you. They do a good job of getting turnovers. They key for us is ball security and execution."


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