The backup position to RB Ryan Mathews needs a little extra more love in the offseason. Ronnie Brown was a good veteran to have on the roster, but he shouldn’t have seen that much time on the field. He was good in pass protection and was an option in the passing game, but he didn’t provide much of a threat running the football. Teams figured out that Philip Rivers checked down to Brown often and the yards became tougher to gain with those dump-offs to the running back.
Brown will likely be joining a new squad next season or will be hanging up the cleats. I couldn’t imagine the San Diego Chargers keeping him around for another season. If the Chargers don’t fill the backup position through free agency, there should be plenty of options through the draft.
One option could be Michigan State RB Le’Veon Bell in the 3rd or 4th round. Bell is a tough, downhill runner with ridiculous balance. He loves, loves, loves to hurdle over defenders. He is a good pass protector and could be an option in the passing game. He would be a nice option during passing downs, while Ryan Mathews gets another chance to take a bulk of the carries.
If Ryan were to go down with injuries, Bell would be able to step up and take the bulk of the carries. I would be worried with Bell’s running style though. He is going to take some big hits and he won’t be able to run over defenders in the NFL like he was able to in college. Hurdling over defenders looks pretty, but one good clip will have the kid landing on his head or slammed down hard from a couple of defenders.