There were hardly any positives to take from the Chargers’ 31-14 loss to the Vikings in Minnesota on Sunday. But, even to the most novice of fans, wide receiver Keenan Allen certainly fit the bill as a bright spot.
After having a two-catch game in a loss against the Bengals in Week 2, Allen posted 12 receptions for 133 yards and two touchdowns in Week 3. His two receiving scores were his first of the 2015 season.
Allen was open early and often, providing the Bolts and Rivers with a viable target despite a serious lack of time to get rid of the ball. The Vikings’ defense pressured Rivers all game, sacking him four times and knocking him down an additional 12 times.
Last week against the Bengals Allen struggled, as mentioned above. He was targeted four times, being credited with two drops.
Inconsistent is a label that all professional athletes would like to avoid.
After suffering what many have considered a sophomore slump in 2014, the former Cal Bear is primed to blow his career-highs in receptions and receiving yards out of the water. His two receiving touchdowns against the Vikings mark him halfway to his total touchdowns last season (four).
“I’m just going out there and playing ball,” he said per Chargers.com. “I’m confident. I’m always confident. I’ve never doubted myself because I’ve put in hard work. But really, I am taking it to the basics. I’ve gone back to the fundamentals and focusing on that. I’m going out there trying to be there for my teammates. I love our wide receivers. We go through the good together and the bad together, so I go out there for them, too.”
The return of Antonio Gates in Week 5 will most likely decrease the number of targets the third-year wideout will receive as long as Gates is on the field and healthy. That being said, as Allen continues to grow into his role as the team’s No. 1 wide receiver, he will still have the opportunity to put up solid numbers.
Though Keenan Allen will always be striving to have games similar to that of Weeks 1 and 3, he is going to have games like Week 2. The goal for Allen needs to be to provide a consistent option for Philip Rivers, and make games like Week 2 few and far between.
For his career, Allen has recorded 177 receptions for 2,144 yards with 14 touchdowns.
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