Getting To Know Your Roster Depth: Defensive Secondary
By Thomas Conroy
If you caught San Diego Chargers head coach Mike McCoy smiling this week, it was because his starting defensive secondary practiced as a unit for the first time since the week prior to the season-opener. That’s great news for a position that has been much maligned for the past decade.
If you gave McCoy a spoonful of truth serum, I bet he wouldn’t have expected Patrick Robinson and Stevie Williams to be his game-ending cornerbacks for Week 4, but that was the case. Finally, the unit has quality depth to overcome injuries and poor play from the starters.
No confirmation on who will start against the Pittsburgh Steelers, much less which cornerback will cover their talented wide receiver Antonio Brown. At least the coaching staff now has quality choices instead of healthy bodies with little skill.
Which San Diego Chargers Backup DB Can Become A Starter By Season's End?
Here’s getting to know the Chargers roster depth: defensive secondary:
CB Patrick Robinson
Chargers GM Tom Telesco brought Patrick Robinson to San Diego primarily as a slot defender in nickel and dime packages, but he has already made two starts in the first four weeks of the season. Robinson’s experience allows to him to take chances and step in front of receivers to intercept the ball when the situation dictates. Coaches love that he plays bigger than his actual height (5-11), and is very willingly to take the challenge of defending an opponent’s best receiver.
CB Stevie Williams
Stevie Williams is an undersized (5-9) cornerback that plays with great physicality off the line of scrimmage. He has shown a knack on coming back to the ball and defending the pass very well in tight coverage. His good play has been rewarded, as Williams recorded one of the team’s three inceptions on the year.
S Darrell Stuckey
Opposing teams should never underestimate the value of Darrell Stuckey to the Chargers, as he’s been voted a Pro Bowl special teams performer, but now Stuckey has become an invaluable piece to the defense. He has tremendous instincts and covers plenty of real estate from the safety position. Stuckey’s versatility and speed has made him a key blitzer from the outside on specially designed pass-rushing schemes.
CB Craig Mager
Craig Mager is the wildcard in this mix, as he has the rare combination of toughness and speed that is much needed to defend in today’s NFL. Unfortunately, Mager has seen very limited time on the field due injuries, so the jury is still out in determining whether or not he can become a true asset to the Chargers.
S Jimmy Wilson
No question that Jimmy Wilson is the weakest link in the defensive secondary. He tends to be overmatched defending more physical receivers that come across the middle. The Chargers don’t have too many other options available currently on the roster, so Wilson stays as a backup safety until further notice.