(12/24/14) Chargers running back Ryan Mathews (ankle) was unable to practice again Wednesday as the team prepared for Sunday's game at Kansas City. Mathews has missed two straight games and nine overall this year.
Branden Oliver heads Chargers rushing attack in Week 16 win
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/21/14) Chargers running back Branden Oliver lead the running-back committee Saturday, racking up 53 yards on 13 carries and adding three receptions for 28 yards.
Oliver showed plenty of burst while continually churning out positive plays, leading the running-back carousel with 16 of the Chargers backs' 29 touches. Ronnie Brown managed to pick up 33 yards on seven carries while adding a nine-yard reception, and Donald Brown delivered 12 yards on four carries as well as a four-yard reception.
If starter Ryan Mathews cannot play in Week 17, Oliver figures to once again lead a multifaceted rushing attack. The Chargers will square off with the Chiefs next Sunday.
Chargers RB Ryan Mathews could miss last two games
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/18/14) Chargers running back Ryan Mathews (ankle) missed his second straight practice Thursday ahead of Saturday's visit to San Francisco. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, it's unclear if Mathews will return during the regular season.
Running backs Branden Oliver and Donald Brown will carry the load against the 49ers, assuming Mathews sits out. Mathews has played in just six games this year.
Chargers list Donald Brown as questionable to return Sunday
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(12/14/14) After leaving Sunday’s game against the Broncos with an elbow injury, Chargers linebacker Donald Brown is questionable to return, the team announced.
Report: Chargers' Ryan Mathews highly doubtful to play Week 15
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(12/14/14) Chargers running back Ryan Mathews, who is listed as questionable for Week 15 vs. Denver due to an ankle injury, is highly doubtful to play Sunday, a source told NFL.com National Insider Ian Rapoport. Mathews was not able to do much in practice during the week.
Mathews has been limited to six games this season due to injury. Donald Brown and Branden Oliver would likely pick up most of the slack in the running game, if Mathews is sidelined.
Donald Brown signed with the Chargers this offseason, a curious move following up his career year with Indianapolis. Where is he supposed to fit in? Ryan Mathews had an even better career year in '13 and Danny Woodhead did very well as a change-of-pace back for the Bolts. Speculation is that the Chargers made this move for two reasons: Depth, obviously, and to give themselves a serviceable starter in 2015 in case Mathews leaves for a richer deal. That suggests that Brown won't be in line for a lot of work in 2014 while Mathews is upright and effective. Brown really only has appeal as a handcuff for those owners who spend a Top 30 pick on Ryan Mathews.