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Jaguars vs. Chargers: 5 Pressing Questions on Lawrence vs. Herbert, Pederson vs. Staley

We spoke with Charger Report's Nicholas Cothrel to get all of the inside information on the Jaguars' Week 3 opponent.

The Jacksonville Jaguars have the chance to make a big statement in Week 3. One week after dominating the Indianapolis Colts 24-0 at home, they will now travel out west to have a chance to square off with the Los Angeles Chargers, one of the best teams in the entire AFC.

To preview this week's pivotal tilt, we spoke to Charger Report's Nicholas Cothrel to get his insight on the team the Jaguars are faced to do battle with.

1) What kind of challenges does the Mack/Bosa duo present for offenses?

Nicholas Cothrel: Khalil Mack and Joey Bosa have looked as advertised through the first two games. Mack appears healthy, recovering from a foot injury that sidelined him for 10 games last season, and has been disruptive in both aspects of the game – against the run and in rushing the passer. 

Bosa looks like the same guy we've all become accustomed to seeing, a defender who can win with the bull rush, but also is really good at manipulating his opposition with superior hand usage. Having these two edge players line up opposite of one another creates one of, if not the best, pass-rushing duo in the NFL.

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2) If the Chargers win or lose on Sunday, what do you think is the main reason why?

Nicholas Cothrel: A lot hinges on the health of Justin Herbert. Obviously if he's unable to play, that makes things quite messy for the Chargers' game plan. Aside from Herbert, the Chargers offensive line sits in question. They started the year with two new starters joining the group upfront with rookie Zion Johnson at right guard and fourth-year player Trey Pipkins at right tackle. However, Pipkins left last week's game in the second half with an ankle injury and center Corey Linsley left in the second quarter with a knee injury. If they’re down two starters across the offensive line, I'd assume the Jaguars will probably win that battle in the trenches.

3) How much will Justin Herbert's play be impacted by last week's injury?

Nicholas Cothrel: The Chargers have classified Herbert as day-to-day. It's still being worked out whether or not he will play Sunday, but Herbert has done some light throwing early in the week. If he does play, Herbert will wear a rib protector. But there's no disputing, even if he does take the field, you have to figure the Chargers will try getting the ball out of his hands rather quickly to prevent additional hits on their franchise quarterback.

4) Which Jaguar is seen as a player the Chargers must stop to win the game?

Nicholas Cothrel: First and foremost, it has to start with Trevor Lawrence. From being on the outside looking in, it appears he's taken an early leap under the guidance of Doug Pederson. And then building off of Lawrence, shifting focus towards the ground attack and trying to slow down James Robinson will be no easy task. By the looks of it, the Jaguars have ran the ball pretty effectively the first two weeks. 

Meanwhile, the Chargers put a focus on their team-building efforts to bring in players who can stop the run at a high clip, which led to three new starters across the defensive line. Perhaps, Robinson coupled with Lawrence, who's capable of tossing the deep ball but also an efficient runner, pose the biggest danger to the Chargers.

5) What's your prediction for the game?

Nicholas Cothrel: It's difficult to make a game prediction until the final injury reports are released, but for the purpose of this exercise, I'm taking the Chargers in a close game. I'll go Chargers, 24, Jaguars 20.