Chargers by the (Jersey) Numbers: #45

If you’re a fan of the Coryell years (and what self-respecting Charger fan isn’t?), you might have a soft spot in your heart for one particular 45 on this list, but the winner is an obvious stand-out from the AFL days.

The Runner Up

 

Hal_stringert_medium (He's bottom row, far left -- trust me.)

Hal Stringert, CB/S

If you’re anything like me – and here’s hoping that, outside of your allegiance to a certain team, you’re not – you probably got a kick out of watching Stringert run around the defensive backfield making interception after interception after interception after interception.  Okay, just double that and you have his career total.

 

The fact is Stringert probably wasn’t much good, but he was a memorable player (one of only a few from Hawaii to play for the Bolts) on some memorable teams, helping to bridge the gap between the Prothro and Coryell years.  And that alone is a reason to give him the semi-coveted Runner Up spot for this number.

 

The Winner

Speedy_duncan_medium

Speedy Duncan, CB

There aren’t too many modern day Charger fans who saw Duncan play, but there aren’t too many modern day football players who are quite like Speedy Duncan (think Devin Hester and Josh Cribbs).  Speed was not just in his nickname but in his entire body.

 

From the beginning, it was clear he was special.  His first full year as a kick returner for the Chargers (1965), he led the AFL in punt return average, and returned 2 punts for a touchdown.  When his career as a Charger was over, he averaged 12 yards a punt return with 4 touchdowns, and over 25 yards a kick-off return.

 

But Duncan wasn’t just a return specialist.  He was one of the top Cornerbacks in Charger history, intercepting a total of 21 passes as a Bolt, and returning 2 for touchdowns.

 

These reasons combine to help make Duncan one of the 50 Greatest Chargers of All Time, and of even more significance to the entire Duncan family I’m sure, the BFTB Golden Jersey winner.

Doug Beaudoin, S

The Rest

Reggie Berry, S

Rob Butler, S

Mike Dennis, CB

Joey Goodspeed, FB

Johnny Ray Smith, CB

Anthony Steels, RB

Henry Wallace, CB

Henry James Williams, DB

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