The run defense, which has ranked in the top 10 every year since 1997, has allowed more than 140 yards rushing three times this month, including a season-high 222 to Miami on Sunday.
The Chargers rank 27th overall on defense, it's lowest since 1985. What makes it more disappointing is that the Chargers were No. 1 overall after the first two weeks. A testament to how far the mighty have fallen.
"Yeah, we know the numbers," defensive end Marcellus Wiley said. "It's been tough because we pride ourselves on good run defense, and some guys have run the ball effectively against us. And even in the passing game, they've had some pretty good yardage."
"We have not played over the past month the kind of defense necessary to put yourself to the standard that they once had here," Chargers coach Marty Schottenheimer said. "We have failed to execute certain things in coverage. We have failed to be in the proper discipline.
"Now, on one hand, you say, 'Well, we can fix it.' It certainly is something that can be fixed. What we've got to do, however, is go fix it."
The one thing that will certainly aid the cause this week is the return of emotional and on the field leader, Junior Seau. Seau missed the first game between these teams with an ankle sprain.
"Anytime you lose your captain and defensive leader, it has some impact," Schottenheimer said. "But he wouldn't have been involved in the punting situation or in the couple of interceptions thrown. Denver really outplayed us."
Mike Riley was fired after a total collapse last season and Schottenheimer was hired to make sure there were no more titanic collapses. He brings his attitude and mentality to the Bolts.
"Absolutely, that was the No. 1 objective," Schottenheimer said. "Quite frankly, we needed to learn how to win. And we have made some progress in that regard. But in our league anymore, if you don't play well you run the risk of getting beaten. So you're tested every week."
Now the test comes for the defense. At certain times this year the offense has been asked to respond and has responded with victories in tough situations. Now that same offense, which could be without Curtis Conway, needs the defense to come together and be a force. 400 yards against will spell certain doom almost every week. They must focus on being the team that was No. 1 in the NFL during the first two weeks of the season.
BoltsReport Top Stories
Which Running Backs Can Make the Cut in 2017?Which backs will make it onto Mike McCoy's offense on the 2017 squad?
Mile High HuddleYesterday at 9:08 AM
Denver Clarifies Trevor Siemian's PrognosisAfter a 104.3 the FAN report claimed that Trevor Siemian could miss significant time as he recovers from offseason shoulder surgery, Denver Broncos V.P. of Public Relations Patrick…
Mile High HuddleFriday at 3:02 PM
Okung Out; Where Does Denver Go For LT Help?The Broncos have a gaping hole at left tackle. Doc Bear evaluates the best free agent options available to the Broncos in 2017.
Mile High HuddleFriday at 10:14 AM
Elway's Approach To Winning The OffseasonCarl Dumler analyzes how the decisions John Elway and the Broncos front office make in the offseason, consistently put them in a position to win on the grid-iron.
Mile High HuddleFriday at 9:29 AM