Chargers running back Austin Ekeler took some time this offseason to research new offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi and he liked what he saw.
Lombardi used to work for the Saints and Ekeler liked what he saw when it came to the team’s usage of running back Alvin Kamara. Ekeler said on SiriusXM NFL Radio that he enjoyed seeing the Saints get Kamara the ball in a variety of ways and thinks that will prove to be a good fit given his own ability to make plays as both a runner and receiver.
“I think that’s something that I’ve learned about Joe coming in, this man is going to get his playmakers in space and situations where they can be successful,” Ekeler said. “I think you see that as a far as the running back position with Kamara with the Saints. They would give him the ball any way they could and he was making plays. And it just depends on me, right? If coach is going to trust me with the ball, my hands are going to make sure I make it work, make him right. If I don’t do that, we got a lot of other talent on the team too. So I like it, because it’s putting the pressure on me. I love that ‘cause now I’m betting on myself to go out there and make plays. I have no doubt about that.”
Ekeler was limited to 10 games due to injuries last season and only picked up 933 yards from scrimmage after going for 1,550 yards in 2019. If he stays healthy this time around, it seems likely that those numbers will shoot back up.