PIT @ LAC
Over/Under 42 LAC -6
Tonight we have a low point total and a home favorite desperate to get into the win column. The Steelers are trotting out 4th string QB Devlin Hodges to face an above average pass defense. I got in on LAC -6.5 early on in the week and I’m not against jumping back in for double helpings. The LAC rush defense is admittedly poor/porous, but it’s just hard to present a scenario where the Chargers don’t run away with this one: At Home, against a 4th string QB, 2 starting-calibur Runningbacks that will stay fresh the entire game, and a monster WR1 that eats up targets or opens up room for everyone else. It’s a match made in football heaven to help LAC right the ship.
Showdown Slate Analysis
League Rankings through Week 5
*Rankings are measured in yards per game
PIT Rush Offense – 29 LAC Rush Defense – 18
PIT Pass Offense – 25 LAC Pass Defense – 8
PIT Rush Defense – 21 LAC Rush Offense – 24
PIT Pass Defense – 12 LAC Pass Offense – 6
On the Steelers side of the ball, Hodges should see a heavy pass rush so I don’t foresee WR1 Juju getting a lot of catches. Young QBs generally end up checking down to their back or their TE. It’s the easier play and the confidence and timing usually takes time to develop for the QB to hit his WR1 and WR2 with any type of consistency. As a result, I like TE Vance McDonald at 5400 and a sprinkle of James Conner. Mr. Conner could break a tackle and get himself a nice little stack of points, the volume will be there with his RB2 injured and unavailable for the day. RB3 Snell will pop in by my estimation about 20 percent of the RB snaps and could be a great salary saver at 4400. PIT has a bye next week, so they’re probably not too interested in resting anyone regardless of score, nevertheless Snell could get a garbage time look that carries him to where you need him.
The Chargers offense has so much going on right now. The timeshare for the RB position is a little stressful and then we see that TE1 Hunter Henry may very well play in this one. When healthy he’s a top tier Red Zone threat at the TE position. I agree with the game total and the spread so I’d expect the Chargers to take the lead early on and run the heck out of the ball with their super back tandem of Gordon and Ekeler. Both are very motivated right now. I have a hot take on this though. Most fantasy experts think that the RB timeshare is going to have a major shift in snap counts from Ekeler to Gordon. But why? Ekeler is playing exceptionally, and the RB snap count differential is not one of the team’s glaring issues. They need to figure out the other side of the football. I don’t see why the Chargers adjust any further than a DEN like 50% split. PIT is third in the league in total sacks and 3rd in picks as well; this leads LAC towards a ton of targets in the backfield for quick dump-offs (Ekeler?!). The Steelers D inconsistently gives up fantasy points to a variety of receiver types so that’s probably our toughest challenge in this matchup: figuring out if Keenan Allen or Mike Williams gets the higher usage. You get that right and you’re in good shape.
Austin Ekeler – 9200
Keenan Allen – 10400
Phillip Rivers – 10200
Mike Williams – 7000
Melvin Gordon – 9000
Vance McDonald – 5400
Chargers D – 5200
James Conner – 9400
Chase McLaughlin (K) – 3800
Benny Snell Jr. – 4400