In assessing the Chargers' RB depth chart, Gilbert Manzano of the Southern California News Group writes: "[Justin] Jackson is probably the most talented running back on the team not named Ekeler, but he struggles to stay on the field because of injuries. If he's healthy during training camp, expect Jackson to win over the new coaching staff and earn the No. 2 job." Durability has certainly been a big issue for Jackson, who played in just 16 total games over the past 2 seasons. But we saw Joshua Kelley disappoint and lose playing time as his rookie season went on. Larry Rountree is the only player among the 3 to be drafted by the current regime, but he was just a 6th-round selection. This looks like an open competition for what's expected to be 2 roster spots. Jackson has played well when on the field and brings intriguing upside as an end-of-draft lottery ticket. This should be a particularly good situation in which to be the #2 back, with Ekeler seeming unlikely to get true workhorse-level rushing work.
Chargers RB Kalen Ballage (calf, ankle) is not expected to play Sunday at Buffalo, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. Ballage is officially questionable, so we'll confirm his status when the inactives come out. His absence would leave the backfield to a returning Austin Ekeler, with Troymaine Pope and Joshua Kelley behind him.
Chargers RB Justin Jackson (knee) has been placed on IR. He'll miss Sunday's game vs. the Dolphins and at least 2 more after that. Los Angeles will move forward with RBs Kalen Ballage, Joshua Kelley and Troymaine Pope, who's questionable for Week 10 with his concussion.
Chargers RB Justin Jackson (knee) is out for Sunday’s game against the Dolphins. RB Troymaine Pope (concussion) is listed as questionable. His absence would leave Los Angeles’ backfield down to Kalen Ballage and Joshua Kelley. After Jackson exited early in last week’s game, Ballage totaled 15 carries and 3 targets to Kelley’s 9 carries and 5 targets.
Chargers RB Justin Jackson (knee) did not practice on Wednesday. His injury isn't believed to be serious, but his availability for this weekend's game against the Dolphins is uncertain. RB Troymaine Pope (concussion) was a full-go on Wednesday and should be back this weekend alongside RBs Joshua Kelley and Kalen Ballage.
Chargers RB Justin Jackson suffered a knee injury early in Sunday's game against the Raiders. He's officially questionable to return. Jackson's absence leaves L.A. with RBs Joshua Kelley and Kalen Ballage.
Chargers RB Troymaine Pope (concussion) is listed as doubtful for Sunday’s game against the Raiders. He surprisingly handled 10 carries and 7 targets last week. So his absence is a boost to both Justin Jackson and Joshua Kelley.
Chargers RB Justin Jackson (knee) is expected to play against the Jaguars today, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. Jackson is listed as questionable but practiced all 3 days this week, including a full workout on Friday. The knee adds some risk, but we still like him as a RB2 vs. Jacksonville's 28th-ranked RB defense. Jackson's knee issue adds some upside to RB Joshua Kelley's Week 7 outlook.
Chargers RB Justin Jackson (knee) is listed as questionable for this weekend’s game against the Jaguars. He was limited on Wednesday and Thursday but put in a full practice on Friday. That suggests he’ll play, although HC Anthony Lynn only said “we’ll see” when asked about Jackson’s status on Friday. Chargers-Jaguars doesn’t kick off until 4:25 pm ET, but we’ll look for an update on Jackson on Sunday morning.
Chargers HC Anthony Lynn said Wednesday that RB Austin Ekeler will be back "later rather than sooner," according to Daniel Popper of The Athletic. Lynn added that Ekeler's hamstring injury is "very serious." The initial recovery timeline called for Ekeler missing 4-6 weeks. This week will make 3 since the injury, and it's sounding like we should expect at least the longer end of that.
ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that Chargers RB Austin Ekeler is expected to miss 4-6 weeks with a hamstring injury and a hyperextended knee. Ekeler is reportedly seeking a 2nd opinion on the injury and his return timeline. Whether to keep him on your fantasy roster will come down to differences in specific team needs, roster sizes and available alternatives. In addition to leaving more playing time and touches available for Joshua Kelley and Justin Jackson, we might see a few extra targets go to TE Hunter Henry and/or WR Keenan Allen. Neither Kelley nor Jackson looks equipped to take over the full receiving role of Ekeler, who can run more WR-type routes than most RBs.
Chargers RB Austin Ekeler left late in the 1st quarter of Sunday's game against the Buccaneers with what could be a serious left ankle injury. Ekeler was holding his foot off the ground before the play even ended, as he was being tackled. He left the field with the help of 2 trainers, putting no weight on the affected leg. And then he left the sideline on a cart. We'll watch for updates, but this looks bad. Joshua Kelley entered the game when Ekeler left. Justin Jackson also figures to see more playing time if/when Ekeler is out.
Chargers RB Justin Jackson (quad) is inactive for today’s game against the Chiefs. Rookie Joshua Kelley is locked in as the #2 RB behind Austin Ekeler — although game flow might work against Kelley today.
Chargers RB Justin Jackson (foot) practiced all week and will play in Sunday’s opener against the Bengals. We’ll see how touches are divvied between Jackson and Joshua Kelley behind Austin Ekeler — but Ekeler is the only viable Week 1 fantasy play.
Chargers RB Justin Jackson left Sunday's scrimmage with a foot injury, according to The Athletic's Daniel Popper. We don't know any other specifics on the issue yet but will keep an eye out for updates. Jackson is competing with Joshua Kelley for the #2 job in the L.A. backfield.
Chargers RB Joshua Kelley "might be having the best training camp of any player on the roster," The Athletic's Daniel Popper writes. HC Anthony Lynn likes what he's seen from the rookie, too. "I believe Joshua is having an outstanding camp," Lynn said. "I’ve thrown him in with the ones; he’s made plays. He’s in with the twos; he’s made plays. And he has shown a versatility. He can catch the ball out of the backfield well. He has shown that. So I’ve been pleased with his progress so far.” Popper notes that Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson still appear to be ahead of Kelley on the depth chart. But it sounds like he's pushing Jackson for snaps behind Ekeler. That'll be a situation to monitor early this season. For now, Kelley and Jackson are only worth rostering in deep fantasy leagues.