Who are the San Diego Chargers most underrated players of all time?

Dec 16, 2012; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers outside linebacker Shaun Phillips (95) runs out of the smoke during pregame introduction before a game against the Carolina Panthers at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Who are the most underrated San Diego Chargers of all time?

I can’t speak for all the players that have every put on a San Diego Chargers jersey, I don’t have that experience watching the team. I never was able to watch players from the Fouts era and all I get to see are the highlights. I can speak about some of the players that I saw and loved. Here are a few of the players that never got the respect that I thought they deserved.

QB Stan Humphries
All Chargers fans that saw him play, loved his play. He was a grinder. He could toss that deep ball with the best of them. One of my favorite quarterbacks. He stood in the pocket and made things happen. Intelligent. He is the only quarterback to lead the Chargers to a Super Bowl.

RB Ronnie Harmon
He was always a threat to catch the football out of the backfield. He was one of those backs that was a mismatch in the passing game. He finished with 914 yards receiving out of the backfield one season and he wasn’t even the starter. He was just a playmaker.

LB Donnie Edwards
5 seasons as a starter in the middle of the Chargers defense and finished each season with over 120 tackles. He always was around the football, but only was voted to the Pro Bowl once.

Who were some of the Chargers that you felt didn’t get the attention that they deserved?

Topics: San Diego Chargers

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  • dusty

    Loved Ronnie Harmon. The first guy I remember with the dark visor. First down machine.

    • Efren E Sicat

      Yes Ronnie came from the Bills… i recall a 1989 playoff game the Bills against the Browns Ronnie drop a sure TD pass in the endzone that would have taking the Bills to the next round (AFC championship game) the following season the Charger was able to picked him up…

  • JoseSD

    Like you im not old enough to remember a lot of the 90s since im 23 but I always thought Stephen Cooper was underrated, he wasn’t a star but he was pretty solid. David Binn and even Scifres doesn’t get the respect he deserves. Also not only after losing Neal at FB did the run game decline but also losing Brandon Manumaleuna was tough, he was a good run blocking TE when he was here.

  • tubbs45

    1. Leslie ONeal, straight mauling fools
    2. Ronnie Harmon, you just knew it was gonna happen when he came in
    3. Natrone (motha fuckin) Means – power, cuts like he is on rails, and was never afraid of contact…

    So many great players… But under appreciated, that’s my list….

    • http://boltbeat.com/ Ernie Padaon

      I love that list

    • JoseSD

      I wouldn’t say O’neal was underrated since he was Rookie of the year on defense, made the pro bowl many times, and has the same number of career sacks as Lawrence Taylor, he’s not a recognizable name with casual fans but I still wouldn’t call him underrated

      • tubbs45

        thats exactly why I would call him underrated, everyone knows the LT of the East, but LO gets no props…

  • Alter Ego

    1. John Jefferson
    2. Fred Dean
    3. Ronnie Harmon
    4. Gill Byrd

  • chargerrocket

    Stan can throw that deep ball! Others include ONeal, Wes Chandler, James Brooks, JJ, & Tony Martin.

  • jonpviv
    • jonpviv

      5th round pick. Undersized at 5′ 6″ and 171 lbs His best year as a pro came during the 1985 season when he set the then-NFL season records for receiving yards by a running back andall-purpose yardage. He also led the AFC in receptions that year.

      In 1985, James set the NFL record for all purpose yards in a season with 2,535 yards.

      • jonpviv

        Hands down you knuckleheads, Lionel “little train” James is the most underrated charger of all time. Set NFL records and none of you numb skulls even remembered him. And you call yourself charger fans. HAHAHAHAHAHA

        • FitzWilly

          Sorry to interrupt this stimulating conversion between you and the voices in your head
          But the 60′s called, and they want their hairstyle back
          and you call yourself a GOD loving Hippie

        • tubbs45

          Sorry father time, fans also dont all need to be historians, good job on learning how to use wikipedia. I still love your jazzercize video from the 80′s… you should consider a come back!

          http://i1276.photobucket.com/albums/y462/staffpicks/Animated_GIFs/hCAA89368_zpsacaf80de.gif

        • NativeSanDiegan

          Don’t think you can call him, or anyone else for that matter, THE most underrated Charger of all time. I could rattle off a dozen guys who COULD be THE most underrated-Keith Lincoln, Dickie Post, Brad Hubbard, Ed Wilkerson, Chuck Allen, etc…
          My point is DON’T BE SLINGING INSULTS at other Chargers fans. Bolt Up!!! Save it for Faders fans or Donkey fans when they invade our site, (or when we invade theirs hahaha)

        • John Bauer

          I remember him ! ! !

        • John Bauer

          How about Bobby Duckworth ? I remember L James.

    • tubbs45

      Exactly the point, not underrated. And yes I did contemplate having him down on this list, but with on 4 years in the league, I think his records speak for themselves as not underrated…

      • NativeSanDiegan

        Aloha Stubbs,
        I usually agree with you and jon’s opening generalization that he’s calling every Charger fan on this site a dummy isn’t exactly endearing. Despite his manner of presentation, I have to agree with him about Lil’ Train. In my overall definition of underrated it starts with a player who isn’t talked about around the league and not even very much in his own town. Someone not in the limelight.
        Next I see 2 distinct varieties.
        One is a player who may not have the stats, awards, etc but is a critical player on his team.
        The second type is an outstanding player who may have the stats & even awards (from other players) but is not talked about in other cities and around the league. Personally, I think James falls into this 2nd category. How many people when talking Chargers football even mention James, even in San Diego? IMO

        • tubbs45

          James kicked ass, no doubt. Matter of fact I have his jersey in my collection. But coming in here are calling out peoples opinions as ‘numb skulls’ and knuckleheads is horse shit. #BoltUP

          • NativeSanDiegan

            He could be a troll. Never saw him on this site before. There are 2 things that he definitely is-a punk and a jerk. But I try to stay classy and not name call.

        • NativeSanDiegan

          Tubbs, I agree with you 100% on the namecalling, hadn’t seen all of it yet. My comment further down addresses that. No need to come in here slinging those insults when we’re just having fun putting our opinions out there.

  • FitzWilly

    Stan “The Man” Humphries
    Ed White
    Louie K
    Donnie a close third, tied with Steve Foley

    • tubbs45

      Steve Foley was a beast!!!

      • FitzWilly

        Damn straight brother

        even a few bullets couldn’t slow him down lol

        ahhhhh what might have been :)

        • http://boltbeat.com/ Ernie Padaon

          Is it weird I went to high school with the dude that shot him!

          • FitzWilly

            No Way
            Small world E-Pad
            maybe you should pay him a visit and shot one of his knees out
            Foley had a few good years left
            he was an absolute Beast/Game Changer
            I hate that prick

    • Adam

      You stole the words I was gonna use! Stan the man! Love that dude. First chargers QB I remember. Also I loved natrone means. I had a poster of him and Seau as a kid

  • NativeSanDiegan

    Gary Garrison-wr played opposite Lance Alworth. SDSU graduate great after the catch, great hands & simply outstanding.
    Ernie Ladd-DE-DT. A FORCE! 6’9″ 335 lbs without steroids. League didn’t like him because he was professional wrestler in offseason. Couldn’t block him. Fantastic pass rusher & penetrated on runs. One play: Balboa Stadium. Joe Namath qb for Jets. Namath dropped back, looked to his left. Ladd on him like a cat (his nickname “Big Cat”). Super Athletic. On the play Ladd grsbbed his shoulder pad with one hand and lifted Namath then started to swing him around in a circle, still with only one hand. The other players stopped and I thought Ladd was going to throw him about 10 yds. Then Ladd lowered him and while still swinging him brushed Namath’s butt on the grass and then just lifted him back up and set Namath standing on his feet. Namath looked scared to death. The only players I’ve ever seen come close to him are Reggie White and Deacon Jones.
    NativeSanDiegan (This won’t let me sign in again)

  • Jordan Denning

    Terrell Fletcher!

  • Mike DeWitt

    Mike Scifres, Charlie Joiner

    • NativeSanDiegan

      Mike Scifres definitely

  • miketuck

    LB Donnie Edwards showed that in the case of Bront Bird, that you don’t have to be that big to be a great LB. Edwards never saw a tackle he couldn’t make and I think that Bird has much the same qualitys. And just like Donnie I think Bird could switch out to the OLB. Edwards a San Diegan himself was a great Pro and person, very charitable and es[ecially to our military.
    Joiner was right behind Largeant in greatness and that’s in good company. I’ve seen Joiner catch over the middle and get hit flipping himself 360 degrees and still hang on to the ball. He was a great-great route runner and a clutch 3rd down reciever for a very long time.
    Hank Bauer; There should be a few of these guys on every team. Bauer was Osgood only at the RB position whare he blocked and ran the ball well. But on special teams you could make bets on who was going to make the play. Bauer was a true-grit player
    Gil Byrd; One of the few great CB’s the Chargers have ever had and will forever be the great guy on the team. His name doesn’t come up near enough when talking great Chargers.
    And last, John Jefferson got all the shout-outs for being a fantastic reciever. But when he went to GB he wasn’t ever the same. That can’t be said about his replacement Wes Chandler who just stepped in and wasn’t always as flashy but was a better route runner and when joned by Winslow and Joiner they formed one of the all time best recieving cores in my book.

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