The Chargers are a bit of an overrated team coming into the season. They should be better on the offensive line and in the running game this season, to complement their impressive passing offense, led by quarterback Justin Herbert, but they’re starting from a lower base point than most realize, as they didn’t beat a single team with a winning record in 2020, while losing three times to teams without a winning record and not winning a single game by more than 10 points.
The Chargers went 7-9 last season, but needed a stretch of wins by only a field goal against the Raiders, Falcons, and Broncos in weeks 14-16, before playing the Chiefs backups week 17. They could win more games this season, but it will likely take Justin Herbert taking another step forward, far from a guarantee for a player who is already coming off one of the best rookie seasons ever by a quarterback and would need to be even better for this team to take a big step forward.
Washington is a much more well rounded team, with a dominant defense and an improved offense, led by new quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. This line, favoring Washington by only a point, suggests the Chargers are a slightly better team, but I have Washington as the better team, favoring them by 4 points in my calculated line. They’re definitely worth a bet at Washington -1, as they would just need to win to cover and should win this game about 60-65% of the time.
Washington Football Team 24 Los Angeles Chargers 20
Pick against the spread: Washington -1