2015 Depth Charts: San Diego Chargers

| 2 years ago
SD

2015 Depth Charts: San Diego Chargers


SDNotes

•  Two years ago I wondered if Philip Rivers was done, but he’s rebounded from 2012 with two impressive seasons to keep himself amongst the best quarterbacks in the league.

•   The decline on Antonio Gates continues, with the tight end slipping again in 2014. We’re at the point now where Lardarius Green is making a strong push to steal most of his snaps as he becomes the best tight end on the roster.

•  Eric Weddle maintains his place amongst the best in the league after another impressive season where he ended up as our highest-graded safety. Excellent against the run and in coverage, he’s been consistently good throughout his career.

•  After a disappointing rookie campaign in 2013, linebacker Manti Te’o had a much better year in 2014. Not outstanding, but good enough that he’s now a solid starter, he’s definitely trending upward.

 

Team Needs

Right Guard: Johnnie Troutman continues to struggle, finishing the year as our lowest-graded right guard. Upgrading here won’t force them to break the bank either, but after two years as a starter it makes sense.

Defensive Line: The Chargers can get by with Corey Liuget at one defensive end spot, but they need to upgrade at the other and in the middle. Kendall Reyes gets bullied far too easily by opposing offensive linemen, while Sean Lissemore has never re-gained the form that impressed us so much in Dallas in 2011.

Cornerback: It says a lot that the entire Chargers cornerback position is unknown, with us just not having seen enough of any of them to judge. Jason Verrett looked good before his injury, so they’ll be hoping he can man one spot for years to come but do they trust any of the other four to fill the starting jobs opposite him and in the slot?

 

Click here to see the rest of the charts.

| Analyst, Lead Special Teams Analyst

Gordon has worked at PFF since 2011, and now heads up the company’s special teams analysis processes. His work in-season focuses on college football, while he is also heavily involved in PFF’s NFL draft coverage.

  • ben

    You’re way off on Gates. He’s not what he once was buy he had a good season. 68-821-12.

    • Shad Khan

      I’m sure they looking at his raw stats… probably a few other things, too.

      • ben

        Clearly. I Just think the grade and the comment are too harsh. You can do all the advanced stat digging junk you want, but the bottom line is 69 catches for 821 yards and 12 touchdowns are good numbers for a tight end.

        • https://twitter.com/MALACHiOFCOURSE Malachi

          they look at film, not stats

          • ben

            And that film shows him scoring 12 touchdowns. Look, I know he’s a terrible blocker but that alone doesn’t make him average. We’re talking about Antonio Gates here.

          • https://twitter.com/MALACHiOFCOURSE Malachi

            yea, i was a lil surprised to tbh

          • Guest

            He played 787 snaps, so the 69 snaps you are describing arent enough to make a judgement. You have to look at the whole picture. Gates is still an effective receiver as his +4,6 grade suggests (tied for 7th best among TEs). In the past, he was such a dominant pass catcher, that you could look beyond his absolutely horrible blocking. His -12,8 run blocking grade (4th worst among TEs) is just too much. He hasnt graded positively in overall grade since 2012 and that was a +1,2

            Gates is good receiver and a horrible blocker and as long as the Chargers are using him as blocker, Average is about right.

          • David Howell

            I was surprised by it, but Gates is really a one-trick pony now, if he ever wasn’t. He’s a big slot receiver and still an effective safety valve for an all-too-frequently-hurried Rivers, but that’s all he is. Surprised Green is rated higher, he never seemed to play enough and it felt like the coaches didn’t trust him.

            Lots of average players, a couple of big weaknesses, a couple of unknowns, and one of the strengths being QB… No wonder we’ve had two straight 9-7 seasons.

          • Guest

            Gates has always been a one trick pony, but it’s a hell of a trick. It’s the type of trick that converts a critical 3rd down to win the game, or burns the LOB for 3 amazing TDs. You put up with lousy blocking because of his ability to change a game.

          • David Howell

            No doubt about that. He can change the face of a game – as you mentioned, the Seahawks game was a perfect example.

            Seeing as fellow hardwood-to-gridiron jumbo slot receivers have gained such prevalence in the NFL, the blocking tradeoff is evidently one plenty of teams are ready to make.

          • Izach

            That’s all any TE ever is. Over sized slot options who are good redzone targets

          • BlueBoltFan

            I disagree. I think whatever metric or standard they’re using is a bit overly general. Gates is above average not just in his receiving stats but what he forces defenses to do to account for him.

            I could make an argument that Tom Brady is an average QB because he doesn’t scramble. If I’ve weighted scrambling as equally significant to the position as passing, I could conceivably come to that conclusion. The only thing useful that would reveal, however, is that my metric is flawed. Same thing here. It’s missing the wood for the trees somewhat.

          • Izach

            Exactly

          • Izach

            Truth is tho his -12.8 blocking grade shouldn’t be added to his pass catching grade, they should be averaged out into what he does most and when it affects the game. IF he plays 60 snaps a game and blocks 10 times and runs routes 50 times and had a receiving Grade of 8.5 but fails on every one of his 10 blocks and has a -20 blocking grade on the game PFF tells you he had -11.5 day. But that isn’t the case.

          • Izach

            Actually they look at results not really the film, they don’t grade how he did just what he did, there is the process, the play by play result, and over all production, scouts grade the process, PFF grades he result, most fans grade the production.

        • micah

          I don’t think he dropped much, if any passes last year. He probably got that grade for having stretches of games where he destroyed everything and others where hardly did anything. He was pretty inconsistent in terms of game to game how good he was.

  • https://twitter.com/MALACHiOFCOURSE Malachi

    if they were to sign orlando franklin to play LG, draft a RT (which their will be some good ones available when they’re drafting in round 1), and kick Fluker inside to RG they would have the biggest O-line in football. not necessarily the best o-line but vastly improved. hope they don’t tho, go broncos

    • https://twitter.com/MALACHiOFCOURSE Malachi

      guess they might be on the same page as me afterall, lol 😉

  • cameronmm

    Corey Liuget is at least above average, Gates had a great year last year and should also be above average. I don’t think Oliver is anywhere above average, he should be average at best. Reyes and Troutman are where they belong.

  • brooks

    The Oliver and Gates grades are baffling. And Oliver ahead of Woodhead? Wow. This is somewhat embarrassing.

    • Guest

      Not really baffling. Gates gets dinged for his poor run blocking (which I think is missing the point, but that’s their system). I think Oliver is probably listed ahead of Woodhead simply because the Woodhead missed most of last year. I don’t really think one is “ahead” of the other in reality.

  • micah

    How can you grade woodhead butnot verrett? He played more than woodhead. A lot of the other guys with there “unknown” tag played more than woodhead.

    • guest

      Woodhead has prior seasons to evaluate.

      • micah

        But the grade was based off last year.

  • micah

    How is donald brown average. He sucks.