Tyrod Taylor’s play will determine Chargers’ fate in 2020
The Los Angeles Chargers have a great roster with a quarterback concern. Cue the angst.
Taylor, 31, is entering his second season with the Chargers. While pundits feel he’s largely a terrific backup and a mediocre starter, the good news is he’s surrounded by a hoard of talent most teams can only dream of.
Los Angeles has receivers Keenan Allen and Mike Williams to target on the outside, with tight end Hunter Henry enjoying space down the seem. The big concern is staying healthy, as all three have had a past propensity to miss chunks of time.
Additionally, the Chargers have Austin Ekeler swinging out of the backfield. While Ekeler isn’t a great runner, he’s one of the best pass-catching backs in the game, notching 92 receptions for 993 yards last year. Factor in an improved offensive line featuring right tackle Bryan Bulaga and guard Trai Turner, and the offense is loaded.
Still, Taylor needs to step up. When he started with the Buffalo Bills, the Virginia Tech product never eclipsed 3,100 passing yards or 20 touchdowns. In Cleveland, Taylor started three games in 2018 before giving way to Baker Mayfield. Taylor recently talked about that experience recently, per ESPN:
“A lot of things that happened in Cleveland was out of my control, but I never changed my attitude towards what I can do and towards the team,” Taylor said. “Moving forward to this one, whether it’s viewed as the same circumstances, I focus on what I can control, and that’s me bringing my ‘A’ game each and every day, being a leader and bringing great energy towards the building.”
The Chargers don’t need Taylor to play at a Pro Bowl level to be a playoff team. They simply need him to make playoffs and execute as he’s done in the past.
However, if Los Angeles wants to challenge the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC West, Taylor needs to have his best campaign by a considerable margin. It’s a tall task for a 31-year-old, but the talent is around him to make a run if things fall into place.