The offense is close to being somewhat whole again in the passing game. Chargers receivers Keenan Allen and Mike Williams returned to practice in a limited role on Wednesday ahead of a big Sunday Night matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs.
Allen has played in a little less than a game this season. He has been dealing with a nagging hamstring injury, which he has tried to return from twice. He has suffered setbacks both times.
Williams hurt his ankle toward the end of the blowout loss to the Seahawks. He caught a pass, and the defender tackled him with his foot under the tackler’s body. He has been out for about three weeks.
“I think we’re just going to build them up as we go, and I think we’ll be able to tell you a lot more as the week goes on,” Chargers coach Brandon Staley said. “Friday, I will probably have a lot better report, I think, for you guys.”
Both have been asked if they will play Sunday.
“I hope,” Allen said.
“Maybe,” Williams said.
How close are they to being ready?
“I couldn’t tell you,” Allen said. “Game speed is so much different than just running. It’s just going to take some time. See how it feels leading up to tomorrow.”
Allen has been at this point before where he believes he is ready, and something happens. Staley said they were going to be careful with him.
“That’s why I’m going out day to day to run around a little bit she’s trying to see what I’m feeling like, see if I can give it a go Sunday,” Williams said.
Both admitted it has been tough to see the team play without them. Both have complimented DeAndre Carter, Joshua Palmer, Jason Moore, and Michael Bandy for holding it down during their absence.
“Everybody was stepping up the main thing, and that’s just to show you the type of guys we have in the room,” Williams said.
It is not certain either will go yet, but the fact that they are practicing must give the team a boost. Each player knows what they need to see from themselves before they give the thumbs up.
“Being able to get in and out of the breaks, react the back shoulders or take the top off and if I’m comfortable with doing all that and being able to do it I’m going,” Williams said.
The offensive production has taken a dip without them in the lineup. When Williams was healthy, he was doing well, especially in road games, but they are still missing the element that Allen brings elusiveness and the third down trust that Justin Herbert has in him.
The setbacks have made Allen say he won’t return until he can go full blast. He doesn’t want to have to be on a snap count.
“I got to do what’s right for me,” Allen explained. “For the past three weeks, I’ve been trying to get back because I know they want me back, they need me back. Now it’s like, ‘Let me get back to (being) myself, so I’m not just playing with my mind over and over and over again.'”
The Chargers have a huge divisional matchup this weekend against the Chiefs, who are two games ahead in the AFC West lead. They will need both receivers to help them overcome their division rival.
Nuts N’ Bolts
- Chargers injury report. DNP: P JK Scott (illness), K Dustin Hopkins (hamstring), OLB Khalil Mack (rest). Limited: WR Keenan Allen (hamstring), WR Mike Williams (ankle), WR DeAndre Carter (ribs), TE Gerald Everett (groin), RT Trey Pipkins (knee), OLB Chris Rumph (knee).