Ryan Mathews: What to Expect from Chargers RB in Week 11

Ryan DavenportContributor INovember 18, 2012

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 28: Running back Ryan Mathews #24 of the San Diego Chargers runs the ball against the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium on October 28, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

It's official: Ryan Mathews will be starting in the San Diego Chargers backfield for the team's Week 11 match-up with the Denver Broncos this afternoon. 

Having already missed two games this season, Mathews was uncertain for today's tilt against the Broncos, but according to Jamey Eisenberg of CBS Sports, the Chargers running back is healthy and will start for San Diego. 

Now that Mathews is in the lineup, the only question is what kind of an impact the third-year back will have for the Chargers, who are looking to get back to .500 with a win over the surging Broncos. 

Unfortunately for Mathews and the Chargers, he'll be going up against one of the league's most stingy run defenses. The Broncos currently rank 10th in the NFL in rush yards, allowing just under 100 yards a game thus far. 

When healthy, Mathews has been reasonably effective this season, running for more than 400 yards despite only exceeding 20 carries on two occasions this year. 

Seeing as the Chargers haven't been as strong offensively as they once were through the air, Norv Turner needs Mathews to be more of a difference-maker if San Diego is hoping to turn things around late in the season. 

Last time San Diego took on the Broncos, the Chargers blew a big first-half lead en route to one of the most embarrassing losses we've seen all season. 

If they're going to have any chance at exacting revenge on Denver, they'll need more from their top running back on Sunday.