Can Los Angeles See Jim Harbaugh’s Magic? Analyst Warns of Excessive Charger Expectations in 2024

There is always a sense of hope during the Los Angeles Chargers offseason, and 2024 is no exception. However, Mike Jones of The Athletic wishes to temper the team’s somewhat exuberant expectations in Jim Harbaugh’s first season.

Harbaugh is generally thought of as football’s quick-turnaround CEO. Someone who comes in rights the ship, and wins right away.

That’s what transpired when he last joined the NFL. In his first season as coach, he took the 6-10 San Francisco 49ers and converted them into the 13-3 NFC West winners, who also made a long playoff run. In his second season, those Niners teams proved to be formidable, winning the Super Bowl.

He performed a similar turnaround in Michigan, but one that didn’t seem to be as “flash in the pan” as the 49ers’. In such case, Harbaugh needed seven years to successfully restore the Wolverines’ national dominance. However, in a single summer, he managed to transform a 5-7 team into a 10-3 one.

Along with the 49ers, Baltimore Ravens, and Indianapolis Colts, Jones categorized the Chargers as one of the “Most Overrated in the NFL.” What he wrote on the 2024 Chargers is as follows:

What Jones Gets Wrong

Jones talks about how the Chargers strengthened their defense. They did, in certain respects, but mostly by continuing to be attached to both Joey Bosa and Khalil Mack. The Chargers defense actually needs a lot more improvement than he admits in this article. They lack great depth and elite starters on their defensive line. Their linebacking corps is a mix of youthful inexperience and an elderly Denzel Perryman, and their secondary depth is dreadful.

The defense is this team’s biggest weakness. This is bad news, but if you are going to humiliate a squad, make sure it’s justified.

Strength of Schedule: This year’s Chargers schedule is the second-simplest in the league. Their visit to the NFC South this year is fortunate for them. They also play four games against the Denver Broncos and Las Vegas Raiders, as well as a few games against teams in last place, because they ended in fourth place.

Although winning against weak opponents doesn’t always indicate that your team is excellent, it may help the Chargers earn a postseason berth, at which time everything would be on the line.

What He Gets Right

Jones identifies a few legitimate causes for alarm. Between those three players, the Chargers lost 45.8% of their offensive yards in 2023. Additionally, 2018 was a bad year. They accounted for 53.7 percent in 2022.

There isn’t a reliable and consistent danger to defenses in the offensive backfield or receiving corps. But they placed a significant wager on building an offensive line that would raise everyone’s game on that side of the ball.

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