Anthony Lynn remains on the hot seat, but the Los Angeles Chargers still could bring him back in 2021.
After a 45-0 loss to the New England Patriots, the Chargers’ Anthony Lynn appeared to be surging up the leaderboards on the NFL hot seat meter.
So, how hot is his seat after two divisional wins?
With the 19-16 victory over the Denver Broncos, Los Angeles now is 6-9 on the season. If not for three fluke plays in three different games, their record would be reversed. Lynn and the team are looking stronger each week as the season comes to a close.
— Los Angeles Chargers (@Chargers) December 28, 2020
That makes Lynn’s status tougher to decipher entering Week 17.
During this week’s Stacking the Box column, FanSided’s Matt Verderame broke down the implications of keeping Lynn or letting him go. Ultimately, Sunday might be the deciding factor of his status long-term.
“Keep an eye on the Chargers after their game on Sunday and into Black Monday,” Verderame said. “Either Lynn gets a final chance, or the most intriguing coaching vacancy becomes official.”
Buy or sell stock on Lynn’s status for 2021
Part of the reason Lynn still received a chance late was due to his 2017 and 2018 seasons. Los Angeles was in the middle of a move and rebuild, yet Lynn took them to two nine-plus win seasons and the divisional round of the AFC playoffs.
Even though he’s cost the team wins, Lynn and Justin Herbert are working well enough to secure a second season. On Sunday, the No. 6 pick broke Baker Mayfield’s rookie touchdown record in the first quarter, putting him at 28 scores on the year. He’s also thrown for over 300 yards on seven different occasions.
top 2 and he's not 2. pic.twitter.com/2OM4LtoXuT
— Los Angeles Chargers (@Chargers) December 27, 2020
The problem is the play-calling. Three different times Lynn has either played for the tie or failed to convert due to clock management. The team kicked a field goal against Denver on Sunday. It gave Drew Lock time to put together a late drive that almost ended in a Hail Mary.
So, what’s the middle ground? Herbert’s season.
This is Lynn as a play-caller. It’s not going to change over time. However, the production of the Oregon wonder might keep Lynn employed out west for another season.
If the Chargers are certain Herbert won’t regress, expect Lynn to still mix up plays next season.