It’s been a bit since we’ve projected the stats of a Chargers player for the 2016 season, so let’s get back into the swing of things by taking a look at one of the best young cornerbacks in the league today, Jason Verrett.
Verrett will be entering his third season with the team, and is coming off his first Pro Bowl selection. So, how will things turn out for him in 2016? One of our writers at Bolt Beat feels that Verrett will lead the league in interceptions this season.
A bold prediction indeed, but certainly one within the realm of possibilities.
Verrett has only four interceptions through his first two seasons, but don’t judge him on that number. He also has 16 passes defensed and he wouldn’t be earning a Pro Bowl selection if he wasn’t doing something really well.
What he does really well is he locks down the opposing team’s No. 1 wide receiver. When we say lock down, that’s what we mean. As noted by Pro Football Focus, Verrett was No.1 in the league among cornerbacks in terms of receiving a positive grade on coverage snaps.
There’s no reason to believe that Verrett is going to do anything but get better and become as good as any shutdown corner in football. That said, how many times will he have the ball thrown his way? Quarterbacks know what he’s capable of, so they make shy away from his side of the field.
Passes Defensed: 12
He should see all of these numbers go up in 2016, particularly if he can stay on the field as health has been a question mark over the course of his first two seasons. Another key factor to consider is that the Chargers should have an improved pass rush this season, with rookie Joey Bosa coming aboard to help Melvin Ingram and Jerry Attaochu get to the quarterback. This could cause more rushed throws than the Chargers forced last season, allowing Verrett to make more plays on the ball.
Projected 2016 Statistics
Passes Defensed: 20
Six interceptions probably won’t be enough to lead the league in that category, but he will earn another trip to the Pro Bowl, his second of many selections to the annual All- Star game.