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|A pleasant surprise in 2010 as a late training camp addition after being cut by the Jets, Woodhead saw his touches and production drop in New England last season. After registering 131 touches for 925 yards and six touchdowns in 2010, he posted just 95 touches for 508 yards and one score in 2012. With Shane Vereen expected to be healthy after several nagging injuries ruined his rookie season and Joseph Addai added in free agency, Woodhead has plenty competition for the team’s pass receiving role out of the backfield. He isn’t expected to get consistent touches this season and that makes him a borderline RB5 on your fantasy squad.
| Ryan Mathews likely out 1-2 more weeks -- Mon Oct 6 4:55 pm --|
Branden Oliver explodes for 182 total yards in Week 5 win
|Already down Ryan Mathews (out probably at least another week and more likely two with a knee sprain) and Danny Woodhead (lost for the season to a fractured leg), the Chargers had to rely on Branden Oliver on Sunday after Donald Brown suffered a concussion.
Oliver’s 182 total yards were most by a Chargers running back since a guy known by two letters was the Chargers’ face and the league’s biggest force. (San Diego Union-Tribune)|
FF Today's Take: There isn't much question (yet) that Mathews will return as the starter when healthy, but Oliver should have solidified Danny Woodhead's old complementary-back role with his dominant all-around performance against the league's stingiest run defense in Week 5. Oliver stands a great chance of being San Diego's featured back in Week 6 against Oakland and potentially Week 7 versus Kansas City.
| Woodhead out for the season -- Mon Sep 22 4:30 pm --|
Needs surgery on fractured fibula
|The Chargers lost RB Danny Woodhead early in their Week 3 victory over the Bills and it may be some time before they get him back on the field. San Diego announced that Woodhead, who left the game on crutches, suffered a right ankle injury that caused him to be carted off the field. It looks like it is more than your garden variety ankle injury, however.
Alex Marvez of FOX Sports reports that Woodhead suffered both a severe high ankle sprain and a fractured fibula. He’s expected to have surgery that will bring his season to an end. (Pro Football Talk)|
FF Today's Take: Chargers beat writer Michael Gehlken tweeted the news that Woodhead would be lost for the season. It likely locks Donald Brown into a Woodhead-like role when Ryan Mathews returns and probably ensures that Branden Oliver - dubbed "Baby Sproles" by some in the preseason - will see an increase in snaps.
| Ryan Mathews likely out 4-6 weeks -- Mon Sep 15 4:45 pm --|
|An MCL sprain can sideline a player anywhere from a minimal amount to eight weeks. For Ryan Mathews, the timetable appears to fall somewhere in between.
A recent MRI has confirmed a sprained MCL for the Chargers running back, and he is expected to miss four to five weeks, according to the NFL Network. The team will take the news, knowing it could've been much worse after Mathews was carted off the field Sunday. His right knee injury came during the fourth quarter of a 30-21 win over Seattle. (San Diego Union-Tribune)|
FF Today's Take: Mathews' injury history was likely one of the main reasons the Chargers signed Donald Brown this offseason. The former first-round pick of the Colts didn't do a lot with his 10 touches on Sunday, but figures to pretty much absorb the role of Mathews in his absence while Danny Woodhead remains the passing-down/change-of-pace option. Along with Kansas City's Knile Davis, expect Brown to be one of the top waiver-wire additions in most leagues this week.
|Chargers' backfield "a three-headed monster" -- Mon Aug 4 3:55 pm --|
Mathews coming off career season
|Ryan Mathews calls it “the three-headed monster.” It could perhaps also be called unprecedented. In NFL history, only the 2012 Carolina Panthers - after signing Mike Tolbert - could arguably boast three running backs coming off a season as productive as the Mathews-Danny Woodhead-Donald Brown trio. It will be the same thing this year. Mathews (will be) the workhorse, Woodhead the versatile guy who can run and catch, Brown the sort of hybrid of the two.
Said Chargers running backs coach Ollie Wilson: “There is no such thing as a featured back any more.” (San Diego Union-Tribune)|
FF Today's Take: The Chargers figure to enter the season as a run-heavy team, but those plans may have to change based on San Diego's difficult schedule - one that includes the NFC West. Not only should owners remember Mathews is still an injury risk, they should also consider his difficult schedule. Woodhead is going to see the majority of passing-down snaps while Brown should steal a few other carries. In short, Mathews is a poor bet to match last season's production.