FanPost

Should the Chargers field two Long Snappers?


I know it sounds crazy, but the Chargers should consider fielding two Long Snappers instead of just one this year. I have a lot of reasons for thinking this, but they boil down to personnel, both at LS and at other positions.

 

1) The Unsung Hero: Twice in two years, the Chargers have suffered at the hands of the injury bug, when an unglamorous but absolutely critical player goes down immediately. In 2009, it was Nick Hardwick. Scott Mruczkowski had a very hard time adjusting to the role of full-time NFL Center; eventually he managed to figure it out, and we went 13-3, but you can put the plays that killed us that year against Baltimore and Denver squarely on his shoulders. Don't get me wrong; his performance was admirable, given the circumstances, but would we have gone 15-1 with Hardwick?

In 2010, David Binn was the one stricken. They went out and got another guy, who got IR'ed in practice almost immediately. The next LS was IR'ed the next week. Then they picked up this horrible bum and gave him a few weeks before giving up, and that's when they found Mike Windt. Mike Windt is certainly no David Binn, but he's also not Ethan Albright. With a good LS, we would almost certainly have made at least one more win early on, would have made the playoffs.

2) The Price of Glamor: We don't need Binn if we just go with Windt, but that would be a bummer, and it's not like it would save a lot of money. We should let Binn start for as long as he can do so, because he's that rarest of birds, an iconic Long Snapper. Cheap, and adds flavor (as well as reliability) to the team. He's a great tackler, and is spectacularly reliable as a snapper and blocker. However, the downside of being a great LS is that by the time you get that recognition, your career is reaching its conclusion. We have no reason to believe that Binn has even just one more season, any more than we do to believe he doesn't have five.

Windt is no Binn, but how could he be? He is at a minimum the Mooch to Binn's Hardwick, however, and since just a few weeks with a bad LS can kill your season, that's a lot better than nothing.

3) The Roster: A 53-man roster contains 8 inactive players, right? And we've finally settled on a d-line, we've only got two QBs, and we've only got 5 WRs most likely. That makes it easy to run 23 offensive players and 26 defensive players. That's a very comfortable personnel budget; in fact, it might be hard to find guys not to activate. So a single roster spot that doesn't have to be activated is less valuable now than it is in most years. If there's any change to roster size in the new CBA, it'll be an increase.

 

What do you think? Am I crazy? I think it's just too important to make sure that we know the guy who gets the ball to Kaeding and Scifres, and who protects our (over-)investment in K/P duties, and who gets downfield and covers for our rookie ST'ers, especially when our starter of choice is so advanced in years.

This FanPost was written by a member of the Bolts From The Blue community and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Bolts From The Blue editors or SB Nation.

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