The undrafted rookie free agent was primarily a special teams player after re-joining the team in late October, contributing slightly on offense when the likes of Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler went down with injuries. It seems likely the Chargers will bring in competition for the No. 3 and 4 spot on their running back depth chart, but Newsome figures to be a part of the competition given his impressive preseason performance in which he carried the ball 42 times for 150 yards and two touchdowns.
Newsome carried the ball six times for 34 yards and also caught both of his targets for 19 yards in the win Thursday over the Chiefs.
Newsome filled in effectively as the backup running back behind Justin Jackson, lowering the lumber on a handful of carries in the first half. The undrafted rookie free agent figures to fade from the spotlight with the likes of Melvin Gordon (knee) and Austin Ekeler (neck/concussion) nearing their respective returns to the field.
Newsome is likely to serve as the top backup to Justin Jackson in Thursday's game against the Chiefs after coach Anthony Lynn told Steve Wyche of NFL Network that he's "not optimistic" Melvin Gordon (knee) and Austin Ekeler (neck/concussion) will be available for the contest.
Both injured backs were listed as non-participants on Monday's estimated practice report and seem unlikely to increase their activity enough over the next two days to gain clearance for the Week 15 matchup. Even though Gordon missed his second straight game over the weekend against the Bengals and Ekeler exited late in the contest, Newsome didn't see any work on offense, as all 12 of the undrafted rookie's snaps came on special teams. Given that Newsome has seen only 11 offensive snaps in total in his seven games with the Chargers, it's difficult to envision him capturing a major role in the game plan, as Lynn seems more likely to lean on Jackson as a three-down workhorse. It's also conceivable that Los Angeles will add another running back to its roster prior to Thursday, which could further hurt Newsome's chances of making an impact on offense.
Newsome ran for 15 yards on four carries during Sunday's 45-10 win over Arizona.
Newsome had just one touch for no yardage heading into Sunday. All four of Newsome's carries came during the Chargers' final full drive of the game, with Melvin Gordon (knee) knocked out of action. With Gordon likely sidelined on a week-to-week basis moving forward, expect a modest role for Newsome. Sunday brings a Pittsburgh defense ranked in the top half of the league against the run, surrendering 4.2 yards per carry.
Newsome survived roster cutdowns at the start of September but was waived by the Chargers later in the month, and had one carry for zero yards over three games. The 24-year-old was signed for depth purposes with starting RB Melvin Gordon (hamstring) receiving a late questionable tag for Sunday's game against the Titans in London.
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