The Chargers will have one of their toughest matchups of the season on Sunday against the Bengals. Cincinnati has a lot of firepower on offense and a defense that can get takeaways at the drop of a hat.
The Bengals have the fifth slot in the AFC, while the Chargers have the seventh. This is a pretty big game because it is an AFC matchup and has wild card implications. Here are the three matchups that will decide the game:
Rashawn Slater vs. Trey Hendrickson
Slater has had a fantastic rookie year almost at an all-pro level. He has faced some of the best pass rushers in the NFL and will do so again on Sunday. Hendrickson made a name for himself in New Orleans and was rewarded by the Bengals with a hefty contract in the offseason. He has 10.5 sacks this season and is a force coming off the edge. It will be a tough matchup for the young left tackle, but it will be just another metric for him.
Tevaughn Campbell vs. any Bengals receiver
Ever since the Chargers have needed Campbell to start, he has gone through a rough patch. He gave up numerous long receptions against the Vikings, Steelers, and Broncos. A rough amount of them were on third down. All three of the Bengals receivers Ja’Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, and Tyler Boyd, are playing at a high level. Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow has spread the ball around all season, so Campbell may be in for a long day.
Keenan Allen vs. Chidobe Awuzie
Awuzie is a former Cowboys cornerback who is having a good season for the Bengals. He will be tasked with going up against Keenan Allen. The Chargers receiver is 105 yards away from 1,000 on the season, and the way he has been playing lately, he might get there on Sunday. If Justin Herbert and Allen can get on the same page on Sunday often, then the Chargers have a good chance.