49ers Vs. Chargers: What You Need To Know About Thursday Night's NFL Game

Chris FaigCorrespondent IDecember 15, 2010

49ers Vs. Chargers: What You Need To Know About Thursday Night's NFL Game

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    With the end of the 2010-11' NFL season quickly approaching, this Thursday Night's game will be extremely exciting to watch, between the San Diego Chargers and San Francisco 49ers, with playoff implications on the line.

    The San Diego Chargers are only one game behind Kansas City in the AFC West, and the 49ers are also only one game behind in their division, trailing the Seattle Seahawks and St.Louis Rams.

    Week 15 is full of exciting matchups, be sure to tune into the first game Thursday Night in what will be a battle between two teams that need to win if they want to keep their playoff hopes alive.

    The following slides give a preview of what to expect when San Francisco travels to San Diego, to take on Philip Rivers and the Chargers.

The Quarterback Matchup

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    # 17 Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers

    2010 Stats

    290-439, 66.1 CMP%, 3868 yards, 26 touchdowns, 11 interceptions, and a 103.1 QB rating

     

    The Philip Rivers led Chargers passing offense, is the 2nd most productive in the National Football league averaging 286.2 YPG.  This week he will go up against the 20th overall ranked passing defense of the San Francisco 49ers.  In the last five games Philip Rivers has thrown a total of 11 touchdowns and four interceptions against the Texans, Broncos, Colts, Raiders, and Chiefs.

     

    #11 Alex Smith, San Francisco 49ers

    2010 Stats

    160-269, 59.5 CMP%, 1809 yards, 12 touchdowns, nine interceptions, and a 80.6 QB rating

     

    After not playing for the last five weeks, Alex Smith had an amazing performance in Week 14 throwing 17-27 for 255 yards, three touchdowns, zero interceptions, and a 130.9 QB rating.  Smith faces a tough challenge this Thursday against the first overall passing defense of the San Diego Chargers who limit their opponents to an average of 173.4 YPG.

Playmakers at Wide Receiver

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    #15 Michael Crabtree, San Francisco 49ers

    2010 Stats

    42 receptions for 555 yards and five touchdowns

    Even though the San Francisco passing attack was dominant last week against the Seahawks, Crabtree played poorly only making a single catch for one yard.

     

    #84 Josh Morgan, San Francisco 49ers

    2010 Stats

    32 receptions for 494 yards and two touchdowns

    Morgan had one of his most productive performances of the season, making three catches for 82 yards and a touchdown.

     

    #80 Malcom Floyd, San Diego Chargers

    2010 Stats

    35 receptions for 660 yards and six touchdowns

    In the blowout win against Kansas City last Sunday, Floyd came up big with two touchdowns after not scoring the previous two weeks.


    #12 Patrick Crayton, San Diego Chargers

    2010 Stats

    28 receptions for 514 yards for one touchdown

    Crayton has been explosive the past two games, making a total of six receptions for 175 yards and one touchdown.

Effectiveness Of The Running Game

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    #35 FB Mike Tolbert, San Diego Chargers

    2010 Stats

    Rushing: 161 rushing attempts for 691 yards and 10 touchdowns

    Receiving: 25 receptions for 216 yards

     

    #24 RB Ryan Mathews, San Diego Chargers

    2010 Stats

    Rushing: 103 attempts for 447 yards and three touchdowns

    Receiving: 16 receptions for 98 yards

     

    The 13th overall rushing offense of the San Diego Chargers, averaging 113.4 YPG, will be going up against the ninth overall rushing defense of the 49ers who hold their opponents to an average of 100.1 YPG.

     


    #21 RB Frank Gore, San Francisco 49ers

    2010 Stats

    Rushing: 203 rushing attempts for 853 yards for three touchdowns

    Receiving: 46 receptions for 452 yards and two touchdowns


    #20 RB Brian Westbrook, San Francisco 49ers

    2010 Stats

    Rushing: 46 rushing attempts for 199 yards and one touchdown

    Receiving: 11 receptions for 125 yards and one touchdown

     

    Frank Gore and Brian Westbrook will have a tough time on Thursday night against the 4th overall ranked rushing defense in the NFL.  The 49ers rank 18th overall in rushing offense with a average of 108.5 yards per game.

Kicker Accuracy

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    #10 Nate Kaeding, San Diego Chargers

    2010 Stats

    15-19 FGM/FGA(78.9 PCT), 31-31 XPM/XPA, 76 total points

     

    Nate Kaeding has been solid from a distance this season, going 7-for-10 from beyond 40 yards.

     

    #3 Jeff Reed, San Francisco 49ers

    2010 Stats

    22-29 FGM/FGA(75.9 PCT), 24-24 XPM/XPA, 90 total points

     

    Jeff Reed has been perfect since arriving in San Francisco, from Pittsburgh, making every kick he has attempted so far.

Injury Update

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    San Francisco 49ers

    #52 LB Patrick Willis: Questionable, Hand (did not practice on Tuesday)

    #20 RB Brian Westbrook: Probable (non-injury related)

    #51 LB Takeo Spikes: Questionable, Hand (limited participant in Tuesday's practice)

     

    San Diego Chargers

    #12 WR Patrick Crayton: Out, Wrist (will not play on Thursday)

    #11 WR Legedu Naanee: Probable, Hamstring (participated in practice on Tuesday)

    #80 WR Malcom Floyd: Questionable, Hamstring (limited in Tuesday's practice, and missed Wednesday)

    #85 TE Antonio Gates: Doubtful, Foot/Ankle