Chargers ‘not optimistic’ on having Gordon, Ekeler vs. Chiefs

Los Angeles Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn looks on during the third quarter against the Cincinnati Bengals at StubHub Center on Sunday.Photo Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Chargers are unlikely to have their two top running backs available for their upcoming AFC West showdown with the Chiefs

Coach Anthony Lynn told NFL Network’s Steve Wyche that the Chargers (10-3) are “not optimistic” about the availability of Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler for Thursday’s game at Arrowhead Stadium.

Gordon has missed the last two games with a knee injury while Ekeler injured his neck in the waning moments of Sunday’s 26-21 win over the Cincinnati Bengals.

Lynn said that the short week just doesn’t present enough time for them to be ready for Los Angeles, which would clinch a postseason berth with a win against Kansas City.

Should Gordon and/or Ekeler be unavailable to play versus the first-place Chiefs (11-2), rookies Justin Jackson and/or Detrez Newsome would be in line for more carries.

Gordon was injured on a reverse early in the second half of a 45-10 victory over the Arizona Cardinals on Nov. 25, with a leg whip by defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche taking him down for a 10-yard loss.

The 25-year-old Gordon has a team-leading 802 rushing yards on 153 carries for a 5.2 per-carry average. Gordon, who is listed at 6-foot-1 and 215 pounds, also has 44 catches for 453 receiving yards and 13 total touchdowns (nine rushing, four receiving) on the season.

Ekeler, who had 94 total yards and a touchdown against the Bengals, has carried 98 times for 496 yards with two scores in 2018. The 23-year-old also caught 39 passes for 404 yards and three touchdowns.

Jackson, who was a seventh-round pick out of Northwestern, has rushed for 132 yards and a touchdown on 22 attempts in his last three games. The 22-year-old also has three receptions for 42 yards in that span.


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