While this may be a matchup that may only present itself 15 or so times on Sunday, it should be an interesting one nonetheless. When Indianapolis is in their base defense, Raheem Brock is the starting left defensive end. However, when the Colts are in the nickel or dime and wanting to get their four best pass-rushers on the defensive line, Robert Mathis enters the game to play LDE and Brock moves from LDE to left defensive tackle.
However, Colts defensive end Robert Mathis is injured and questionable for
this game. So it'll be interesting to see if Brock still shifts to the interior
on passing downs. If he does, an intriguing match-up should develop. Chargers starting
right offensive guard Mike Goff is a much better run-blocker than pass protector
-- and should struggle with Raheem Brock's interior speed.
Brock has been able to succeed at both DE and DT because of his athleticism, goods hands and ability to adjust to blocking schemes. He uses his hands well to keep blockers off his lower body, and makes the necessary adjustments to counter the opposition's blocking strategies against him. Like most of his teammates on the Colts defensive line, it's speed over size for Brock. So he'll struggle when offensive tackles are able to get their hands on him and drive. Brock knows he isn't going to outmuscle many offensive linemen, so he uses his speed and brains to beat them.
The Chargers lack ideal athletic ability along their offensive line, but they have the size and strength to possibly overwhelm the Colts' smallish, yet quick defensive front. One Charger who fits this description to a tee is Goff. He shows good initial pop and quickness, especially in the run game. He gets into his blocks quickly and understands blocking angles. Goff also flashes the ability to get movement at the point of attack. However, he has serious trouble against quick defensive tackles. And he often fails to protect the edges well versus speed. As a result he'll lunge and often put himself in bad body positions.
Expect the Colts to try and exploit Goff's shortcomings in pass protection. San Diego, can avoid this situation by not getting into many long distance down situations. That'll be determined by just how well LaDainian Tomlinson is churning out the yards. And a lot of that will depend on Goff's ability to handle the LDT without help -- because that allows fullback Lorenzo Neal and center Nick Hardwick to chase down Colts linebackers at the second level.