2016 Chargers: A Post-Preseason 53-Man Roster Projection

Credit: Chargers FanFest 2016
Credit: Chargers FanFest 2016

Now that the last preseason game has been played, it’s time for the San Diego Chargers to cut their roster down to the mandatory 53 players. They have until tomorrow (September 3) 1:00 PM PDT.

I thought it would be interesting to make a last-minute final 53-man roster projection. Although the group of 53, however it turns out, projects to be nowhere near final. As the team will take a close look at the players being cut by other teams, searching for valuable reinforcements.


Quarterbacks (2): Philip Rivers, Kellen Clemens

Comment: Chargers go with two QBs because they, hopefully, realize there are positions of higher need on the roster. The back up QB spot is for Clemens, the veteran they’re familiar with. Bercovici showed flashes of a NFL quarterback, but he hasn’t been consistent enough. They’ll try to get him on the practice squad.

Running Backs (3): Melvin Gordon, Danny Woodhead, Kenneth Farrow

Comment: Farrow had a promising stat line against the Titans. He excelled in the final preseason game against the 49ers with a long 44-yard run and a TD. He has earned that RB3 spot, for now anyway. There’s a possibility the Bolts will claim another RB off waivers, but I hope they’ll keep Farrow.

Fullback (1): Derek Watt

Comment: Chargers have been invested in Watt since they drafted him in the sixth round of this year’s Draft. Chris Swain’s powerful rush into the end zone against the 49ers is exactly why I’d prefer him on the roster. He’s a great weapon in short yardage situations. Alas, he’ll be a strong candidate to make the practice squad.

Tight ends (3): Antonio Gates, Hunter Henry, Sean McGrath

Comment: After Jeff Cumberland‘s injury, this is the top 3 at tight end. There’s no need to add a fourth.

Wide receivers (5): Keenan Allen, Travis Benjamin, Tyrell Williams, Dontrelle Inman, Isaiah Burse

Comment: After Oliver went down, McCoy mentioned Burse as one of the kick returners going forward. Burse also had a few nice catches against the 49ers. Dontrelle Inman can be considered a lock for that fifth WR spot.

Offensive line (10): King Dunlap, Orlando Franklin, Matt Slauson, D.J. Fluker, Joe Barksdale, Chris Hairston, Tyreek Burwell, Kenny Wiggins, Max Tuerk, Spencer Pulley

Comment: Yes, that’s 10 offensive linemen. Seems excessive, despite all the health concerns. I was hesitant at first, but looking at them individually, I didn’t know who to exclude.


Defensive line (6): Darius Philon, Brandon Mebane, Corey Liuget, Tenny Palepoi, Ryan Carrethers, Joey Bosa

Comment: Now that Joey Bosa has finally joined the team, I believe the Chargers either try to manage until Damion Square returns from his four game suspension, or pick up someone off waivers they perceive as valuable. Ndulue will likely return to the practice squad in 2016.

Outside linebackers (5): Melvin Ingram, Kyle Emanuel, Jerry Attaochu, Tourek Williams, Ben Gardner

Comment: Ingram, Emanuel, Attaochu were a lock from the start and Williams has tenure with the team. I believe Gardner has made a strong case for himself in the last two preseason games. Bolts could use another explosive edge rusher. Maybe, they’ll stash Landrum on the practice squad.

Inside linebackers (5): Denzel Perryman, Manti Te’o, Jatavis Brown, Nick Dzubnar, Joshua Perry

Comment: No surprises here.

Safeties (5): Jahleel Addae, Dwight Lowery, Adrian Phillips, Darrell Stuckey, Dexter McCoil

Comment: Dexter McCoil has more than proven that he belongs on the roster. Also, there’s a considerable risk he wouldn’t clear waivers. There’s no way around him. Bolts will try to get Adrian McDonald on the practice squad.

Cornerbacks (5): Jason Verrett, Brandon Flowers, Casey Hayward, Craig Mager, Steve Williams

Comment: No real surprises here either. Although it’s perfectly alright to have a question mark about Mager.


Kicker: Josh Lambo

Punter: Drew Kaser

Long snapper: Mike Windt

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