Chargers planning to go with “hot hand” at tailback


Chargers running back Ryan Mathews could end up staying healthier this year for one very important reason:  He could end up playing less.

Via Alex Marvez of, new Chargers coach Mike McCoy plans to use multiple running backs this season.

“I’ve been raised with [Denver head coach] John Fox in this league,” McCoy said.  “We always played with a couple of backs.  It doesn’t matter who’s in there.  Keep them fresh.”

Fox used multiple backs as the Broncos head coach, and before that with the Panthers.

“That’s the big thing.  Play the hot hand while you roll,” McCoy said.  “If you’ve got to tap out for a play or two, we’ll put the next guy in.”

For Mathews, it hasn’t been about tapping out for a play or two; it’s been about being knocked out for a month or two.  This year, he thinks he’ll stay healthy and become productive if he has a good time.

“I just want to have fun with it,” Mathews told Marvez and Gil Brandt during an interview on SiriusXM NFL Radio.  “I think I got away from having fun.  Coming in here, I thought I had to do more than what I had to do.  What I wanted to do this year was just get back to the basics.  Do what I can to help my team win.”

Also hoping to have fun will be newcomer Danny Woodhead and 2012 free-agent acquisition Ronnie Brown.  If one of those guys doesn’t emerge, Chargers fans may have zero fun.  Again.