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Chargers-Arizona Cardinals matchups, how to watch and prediction

Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) reacts after being sacked by Chiefs defensive end Mike Danna (51) on Sunday night. The Chargers lost 30-27.

(Robert Gauthier / VFAB)

Only two teams have blitzed more often this season than Arizona, which ranks sixth in quarterback pressures but tied for 25th in sacks.

Last weekend against Kansas City, Justin Herbert was sacked a career-worst five times. Having Keenan Allen back and fully healthy should help Herbert avoid the charging Cardinals. Arizona’s scheme also could mean more use of the quick passing game, which would bring running back Austin Ekeler more into the plan.

“They’re a very diverse defense,” Chargers offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi said. “They give you a ton of different looks.”

Something to watch for will be the Chargers’ performance after halftime. They have produced 67% of their points in the first two quarters and have just one touchdown in their last 16 second-half possessions. The Chargers have outscored their opponents six times in the first half but only twice in the second.

The Cardinals’ defense, unlike the Chargers’ offense, has been remarkably consistent — if not terribly effective — regarding points, surrendering 147 in the first two quarters and 149 after halftime. The only team giving up more points per game is Detroit.

With wide receiver Mike Williams (ankle) out, Herbert figures to continue to look for Joshua Palmer, who has topped 100 yards in two of the last three games.

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