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2019 NFL Roster Breakdown: Los Angeles Chargers

Roster Changes


Key additions

QB Tyrod Taylor, OLB Thomas Davis


Key losses

QB Geno Smith, WR Tyrell Williams, TE Antonio Gates, DT Corey Liuget, DT Darius Philon, LB Kyle Emanuel, LB Hayes Pullard, CB Jason Verrett, S Jahleel Addae


2019 draft class

DT Jerry Tillery (1.28), S Nasir Adderley (2.60), OT Trey Pipkins (3.91), LB Drue Tranquill (4.130), QB Easton Stick (5.166), DE/LB Emeke Egbule (6.200), DT Cortez Broughton (7.242)


Projected Starters



QB: Philip Rivers
RB: Melvin Gordon
FB: Derek Watt
WR: Keenan Allen
WR: Mike Williams
TE: Hunter Henry
LT: Russell Okung
LG: Dan Feeney
C: Mike Pouncey
RG: Forrest Lamp
RT: Sam Tevi



DE: Joey Bosa
DT: Brandon Mebane
DT: Jerry Tillery
DE: Melvin Ingram
OLB: Thomas Davis
MLB: Denzel Perryman
CB: Casey Hayward
CB: Trevor Williams
DB: Desmond King
S: Nasir Adderley
S: Derwin James


Team Outlook


Notable depth

QB Tyrod Taylor, QB Cardale Jones, RB Austin Ekeler, RB Justin Jackson, WR Travis Benjamin, WR Dylan Cantrell, WR Artavis Scott, TE Virgil Green, OT Trey Pipkins, G Michael Schofield, G Spencer Drango, C Scott Quessenberry, DE Isaac Rochell, DE Anthony Lanier, DE/LB Emeke Egbule, DL Damion Square, DT Justin Jones, DT Cortez Broughton, DT T.Y. McGill, OLB Jatavis Brown, OLB Uchenna Nwosu, OLB Kyzir White, OLB Drue Tranquill, MLB Nick Dzubnar, CB Michael Davis, S Adrian Phillips, S Jaylen Watkins, S Rayshawn Jenkins


Biggest strength: Secondary

General manager Tom Telesco has built arguably the most talented roster in football over the past few years, and the secondary—which was already a strength—will be loaded after drafting Nasir Adderley to pair with Derwin James. The young safety duo can both cover and hit at a high level, but they aren’t even the headliners for the defensive backs, as Casey Hayward is one of the league’s best corners, and the versatile Desmond King was a First-team All-Pro in 2018.


Biggest weakness: Wide receiver depth

Even with Tyrell Williams now in Oakland, the Chargers have a very good top three of Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, and Travis Benjamin. However, all three players have been injured throughout their careers, and the depth behind them isn’t great with 2018 sixth-rounder Dylan Cantrell and 2017 undrafted free agent Artavis Scott combining for zero NFL receptions. If one of Allen, Williams, or Benjamin goes down, Los Angeles will really have to rely on their backs and tight ends.


Position battle to watch: Right guard

The only spot that looks up for grabs is right guard, as Forrest Lamp—the No. 38 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft—has appeared in just two NFL games so far, and he will have to earn the starting job in a competition with veteran Michael Schofield (who started all 16 games last season). Lamp has battled some injuries, but reaching his potential in Year 3 would be huge for the Chargers as they hope to finally make a Super Bowl run.


One more thought

I think signing 36-year-old Thomas Davis was a wise move for both 2019 and beyond. Besides showing last season that he can still be a solid contributor on the field, Davis is a team leader with Super Bowl experience that will help a mostly young group learn what it takes to be a championship-caliber defense. Also, his presence will allow the first- and second-year linebackers (Uchenna Nwosu, Kyzir White, and Drue Tranquill) to learn behind him before a couple can hopefully emerge in 2020.


Early over/under: 9.5 wins (via CBS Sports)

Over. The Chargers won 12 games last year and were close to the No. 1 seed in the AFC, so we’ll see if the incoming draft class can replace some of the veteran production that left this offseason. I think Los Angeles has the overall formula to once again reach double-digit wins and potentially make noise in the postseason.


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