Chargers News: 2016 Breakout Players for the Chargers

Credit: UT San Diego
Credit: UT San Diego


Travis Benjamin

The Chargers special teams last season were an absolute joke. Their coach was fired half way into the season but the teams play never improved. Jacoby Jones was brought in prior to the year to be the returner, but he hurt himself early in the year and was cut after failing to do anything returning kicks. Mike Scifres was released this month after a horrible 2015 season to boot. He was brutal punting for the Chargers and constantly put the team in a hole. Nothing went well with the special teams except for Josh Lambo, who had a decent rookie year as the teams place kicker.

A new returner was desperately needed by the team. The Chargers addressed the issue by bringing in a 26-year-old speedster who provides the team with both a returner and an outside threat for Philip Rivers. Benjamin is blessed with blazing speed and has a very nice elusiveness to his game when running with the ball. He is not a huge receiver by any means so his lack of size makes him harder to tackle while returning and also harder to find running down the field.

Benjamin will have an immediate impact on the team. You could even argue that his arrival is the Chargers single best transaction this offseason. That is just how bad the special teams was last season for the Bolts. There was just no hope of getting any positive yards on returns and it was quite demoralizing to the team. 2016 will be different, that is for sure.

Benjamin returned 28 punts last season for 324 yards and a touchdown. He also caught 68 balls for 966 yards and five touchdowns. Those were career highs for the speedy receiver. Factor in those numbers were with horrible Browns QB’s and you can really start to get excited about Benjamin’s potential. Rivers to Benjamin could be a huge combination for the Bolts in 2016. Then there are the return yards, which everyone is excited to see.


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