Injuries, COVID-19 have Chargers offensive line scrambling
COSTA MESA, Calif. (AP) — The Los Angeles Chargers have been shorthanded for most of the season but they are really scrambling going into Sunday’s game at Denver.
The Chargers are likely to be down to their third string players at right guard and right tackle because of injuries and because two linemen were placed on the COVID-19/reserve list.
At right guard, Trai Turner has been ruled out for a fifth straight game due to a nagging groin injury. Ryan Groy started the past three games but suffered a biceps injury during the fourth quarter of Sunday’s win over Jacksonville. Groy was placed on the COVID/reserve list Thursday after the Chargers cancelled practice when he tested positive.
Scott Quessenberry played the final nine snaps against the Jaguars and would be the likely starter. The third-year lineman had nine starts last season at center.
The situation is just as muddled at right tackle. Bryan Bulaga has missed the past three games due to back problems but is listed as questionable for Sunday after being a limited participant in practice. Trey Pipkins has started for Bulaga but was placed on the COVID/reserve list Friday while Storm Norton (knee) is also listed as questionable. That could leave the Chargers down to Tyree St. Louis, who can play both tackle and guard.
“We said from day one, there’s a lot of things we will have to overcome and then adjust and adapt. And that’s what we’re doing. That’s what the whole NFL is doing,” coach Anthony Lynn said.
Lynn said it is possible Pipkins could come off the list in time for Sunday’s game. A player does not have to test positive to be placed on the league’s COVID/reserve list.
Lynn said the Chargers did their usual Thursday routine during the first half of Friday’s practice before using the second half to go over critical game situations. Saturday’s practice before they leave for Denver will be at a higher tempo compared to past weeks.
The Broncos are going through their own COVID concerns. They scrapped Friday’s practice after right guard Graham Glasgow tested positive.
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