Chargers (4-8) at Jaguars (4-8)

When: 1:05 p.m. Sunday

Where: TIAA Bank Field

Line: Chargers by 3

TV/Radio: FOX (Ch. 11); 640-AM, 980-AM (Spanish)

CHARGERS OFFENSE VS. JAGUARS DEFENSE

The Chargers have had more total yards than their past three opponents, but they enter Sunday with a three-game losing streak. The Chargers might not have trouble gaining yards against the Jaguars because they’re ranked 18th in total defense, but the Jaguars ability to rush the passer could give them more red-zone struggles. Standout defensive ends Calais Campbell, Yannick Ngakoue and rookie Josh Allen have created havoc in the trenches for the Jaguars all season. Jacksonville has recorded 38 sacks, tied for sixth most in the NFL entering Week 14. Chargers left tackle Russell Okung wasn’t at full strength last week against the Denver Broncos because of a groin injury. The Chargers’ offensive line struggled versus a Broncos’ defense that was missing Von Miller. Expect the Chargers to lean on the running game with Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler. The rushing attack has been their strength the past month and the Jaguars allow 136.6 rushing yards per game. EDGE: Jaguars

JAGUARS OFFENSE VS. CHARGERS DEFENSE

Gardner Minshew will be the third rookie quarterback the Chargers have faced this season. They fell to Devlin Hodges and the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 6, and Drew Lock and the Denver Broncos last week. The Chargers will look to get their first win against a rookie quarterback, but Minshew is the most experienced from the bunch. He thrived in his eight starts this season while Nick Foles was sidelined with an injury. Chargers pass rushers Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram will need to be aware of Minshew’s ability to make plays while on the run. Minshew’s mobility has benefited running back Leonard Fournette, who’s having a bounce-back season after a sluggish 2018. The Chargers haven’t forced turnovers this season, but they rank high in most defensive categories this season. They were one of the best pass defenses in the NFL before safeties Derwin James and Adrian Phillips returned last week. EDGE: Chargers

SPECIAL TEAMS

The Chargers made Troymaine Pope the punt returner last week because Desmond King muffed two punts against the Kansas City Chiefs in Mexico City and hasn’t provided a spark on special teams since his punt return touchdown in Week 5 against the Broncos. But Pope had his struggles last week with a muffed punt. With the Chargers coming up short in the eight one-score losses, they could have used help in the kick return game, and haven’t got it so far this season. Dede Westbrook and Michael Walker handle the kick return duties for the Jaguars. EDGE: Jaguars

COACHING

Jaguars coach Doug Marrone could be on the hot seat after another disappointing season. The Jaguars have struggled on defense since trading cornerback Jalen Ramsey to the Rams in October, and haven’t had consistency on offense with quarterbacks Minshew and Foles. But for a few months, the Jaguars made it work and had a 4-4 record. They’re now on a four-game losing streak. The Chargers made their coaching change in October when they fired offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt. But not much has changed with interim play-caller Shane Steichen. He fixed the running game, but the offense is still committing turnovers and struggling to finish in the red zone. EDGE: Chargers

INTANGIBLES

The Chargers haven’t played a home game since defeating the Green Bay Packers on Nov. 3. That’s four games away from Dignity Health Sports Park, including Sunday’s game against the Jaguars. The Chargers have been on the road with a Thursday night game in Oakland, a Monday night game against the Kansas City Chiefs in Mexico City, a bye week and a road game in Denver last week. The Jaguars, however, are well rested with a home game last week versus the Buccaneers. EDGE: Jaguars

MATCHUP TO WATCH

Jaguars WR D.J. Chark vs. Chargers CB Casey Hayward

Hayward had a tough outing versus Broncos wide receiver Courtland Sutton last week. He’ll have another difficult matchup against an emerging second-year receiver. Chark had a hot start to the season, but he’s been held to under 100 receiving yards in six of the past seven games. Before the Broncos game, Hayward had only given up one catch in the four games prior. He’ll look to get back on track versus Chark, who has 881 receiving yards, 58 catches and eight touchdowns this season.

PREDICTION

Jaguars 23, Chargers 17

A second consecutive road game, on the East Coast, with playoffs no longer in reach, will challenge the Chargers mentally. Throw in the eight one-score losses, and the Chargers might come out flat against the Jaguars. Regardless of how well the defense plays or how many yards the offense gains, the Chargers seem to always come up short. Look for the Jaguars to gain an early lead and close it with Fournette on the ground. The Chargers will keep it close because they always do, but the outcome won’t change in this Week 14 matchup.

LA Daily News