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San Diego Chargers Announce 2014 Team Awards

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The San Diego Chargers begin the off-season by recognizing their 2014 standouts.

Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

The end to the San Diego Chargers 2014 NFL season ended quickly and just as quickly, the Chargers announced their 2014 Awards:

MVP- QB Philip Rivers

Rivers was once again the lynchpin to the Chargers success. Despite the absence of a running game, Rivers led the Chargers to a 9-7 season while completing 66.5% of his passes for 4,286 yards and 31 touchdowns. Through the first half of the season, Rivers was mentioned around the league as a League MVP candidate as the team jumped out to a 5-1 record. But injuries to the offense, specifically the offensive line which saw the Chargers start five different centers, proved to be too much to overcome in an effort for a playoff bid as evidenced by Sunday's 7-sack performance by the Kansas City Chiefs in a win-and-your-in the playoffs opportunity. Disappointing as it was,  could you imagine what the season would have been without Rivers? This is Rivers' 6th time winning the award voted upon by his teammates.

Offensive Player - TE Antonio Gates

This was supposed to be the year that Gates would presumably be phased out in favor of the up and coming Ladarius Green. Gates instead made sure to let everyone in the league know that he still had some left in the tank. Gates finished the season with 69 catches for 821 yards and a team-leading 12 touchdowns.  Gates' career total of 99 touchdown catches ranks him ninth in NFL history. During the 2014 campaign, Gates passed Lance Alworth to become the Bolts' all-time leader with 10,014 receiving yards.

Defensive Player - S Eric Weddle

Weddle had another special season in 2014 as he was the only Chargers named to the NFL Pro-Bowl. Weddle turned in a team-leading 114 tackles on the year. But his worth extended beyond the numbers as he was given defensive play calling duties with the demotion in playing time of LB Donald Butler. This is the 3rd time Weddle has received this award.

Special Teams Player -Seyi Ajirotutu

Tutu garnered his first ST player of the year award for his efforts in the 2014 season. Tutu totaled 14 tackles as the gunner.

Lineman - King Dunlap

Dunlap's solid play this year may end up being his saving grace as he enters free agency. Dunlap was the anchor of an offensive line that saw too many injuries in 2014. Dunlap started every game for the Chargers and bringing him back next year is certainly backed by his teammates with this choice.

Co-Inspirational - WR Malcom Floyd, LB Jarret Johnson

Johnson continues to be the voice of the team as he was voted for this award for the second time in his two seasons with the Chargers. Johnson excels in run defense, but his non-stop motor will often have him chasing down opponents all over the field. Johnson finished his season with 51 tackles- 36 of them solo. Floyd's choice is a no-brainer considering that one year ago a neck injury could have ended his career. Coming back this year to the tune of 52 catches for 856 yards and 6 touchdowns in and of itself is a testament to the hard work Floyd put in.  Just the fact that he was able to walk onto the field and take a snap should put him in the discussion of NFL Comeback player of the year as well.