Take Two: Guessing the San Diego Chargers 53-Man Roster

GLENDALE, AZ - AUGUST 27: Center Nick Hardwick #61 of the San Diego Chargers prepares to snap the football during the preseason NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on August 27, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona. The Chargers defeated the Cardinals 34-31. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Two weeks ago, I copied the Silver Fox and tried to guess all 53 men that would make the final cut for the San Diego Chargers roster. With 6 days left until those final cuts, and two important preseason games under my belt since my first guesses, I want another shot.

Quarterbacks (3) (2)

Philip Rivers
Billy Volek

Changes: Sorry, Scott Tolzien. Carrying a 3rd QB on this roster just doesn't make enough sense. I hope to see you on the practice squad.

Running Backs (3)

Ryan Mathews
Mike Tolbert
Jordan Todman

Changes: None. Despite his fumble in the Cardinals game, Mathews has proved two weeks in a row that he's the big-play threat that the running game has been missing for a while. That's why he was drafted. Tomorrow I'll look deeper at the Mathews' fumble issue, but today each of these guys makes the team.

 

Fullbacks (1)

Jacob Hester

Changes: None.

 

Wide Receivers (6) (7)

Vincent Jackson
Malcom Floyd
Patrick Crayton
Seyi Ajirotutu
Kelley Washington
Bryan Walters
Richard Goodman
Vincent Brown

Changes: Stick with me here while I eat some crow. Bryan Walters has had a fantastic preseason and has done it during a time when Kelley Washington can't get on the field. I don't know that new coach Rich Bisaccia is going to beat a drum for Washington to stay, and that's just about the only thing that could keep him on the roster.

Richard Goodman has been too good on kick returns, and has a lot of potential as a Washington-like deep threat in the offense, to cut him. Especially when Gilchrist and Todman have gotten such limited return chances in preseason games. Also, don't underestimate how meaningful it was that Goodman made the tackle on the first Cardinals kickoff return on Saturday.

 

Tight Ends (3)
Antonio Gates
Randy McMichael
Kory Sperry

Changes: None.


Offensive Line (8)
Marcus McNeill
Kris Dielman
Nick Hardwick
Louis Vasquez
Jeromey Clary
Tyronne Green
Scott Mruczkowski
Brandyn Dombrowski

Changes: None. In the off chance that one of these guys gets seriously injured and has to get placed on IR, I think rookie Steve Schilling is next in line for a spot.

Offense Total: 24 players

 

Defensive Line (7)
Luis Castillo
Antonio Garay
Corey Liuget
Jacques Cesaire
Cam Thomas
Ogemdi Nwagbuo
Vaughn Martin

Changes: None. I'm really starting to like the mix of veteran leadership and youth in this group.


Outside Linebackers (4) (5)
Shaun Phillips
Travis LaBoy
Antwan Barnes
Larry English
Darryl Gamble

Changes: Added Gamble, who is showing himself to be a solid pass-rusher and special teamer. With Phillips, LaBoy and English all missing the Cardinals game, it's obvious that they'll need as much depth here as possible.


Inside Linebackers (5)
Takeo Spikes
Donald Butler
Stephen Cooper
Kevin Bentley
Jonas Mouton
Andrew Gachkar

Changes: Replaced Cooper with "New Coop", Kevin Bentley. This is personal preference. Right now it's a one-week race for Bentley to get comfortable in the defense, but Coop looked awful against AZ. They cannot be comfortable with the idea of him having to start any games.


Cornerbacks (5)
Quentin Jammer
Antoine Cason
Marcus Gilchrist
Dante Hughes
Shareece Wright

Changes: None. I almost took off Wright, but I kept him on for the same reason I kept Vincent Brown: 3rd Round Picks do not get cut before their rookie season. Whatever reason A.J. Smith decided to draft these guys is not gone, and there's plenty of hope that the'll live up to their potential.


Safeties (4)
Eric Weddle
Bob Sanders
Steve Gregory
Darrell Stuckey

Changes: None. If there's an open spot somewhere, I could see one of the Special Team standout Safeties (Quinton Teal, C.J. Wallace) getting a spot for a while.

Defense: 26 players

 

Specialists (3)
David Binn
Nate Kaeding
Mike Scifres

Changes: None.

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