Chargers release first official depth chart
By Nick Mansoor
After a few weeks of practice at Chargers Park, the Bolts have officially released their roster heading into preseason.
Surprisingly, there are a lot of positions I didn’t expect seeing slotted as they have on the depth chart. Here are some key evaluations I noticed:
1. Kyle Emanuel is starting over Jeremiah Attaochu
Emanuel is a really good linebacker, especially for a former fifth-round pick. He is smart, has a nose for the ball and can make the big plays happen. This year, it looks like he hopped over Attaochu. Not only did he hop over him, but they moved Attaochu behind Melvin Ingram, who is our clear starter at OLB.
Is Emanuel better than the “Chu Chu” train? In my opinion, no. Attaochu finished last season on a strong note and will be looking to progress this year. I think that Emanuel will be starting in preseason to make sure Attaochu doesn’t get injured. If he does stay as the starter after preseason, that will be a big surprise.
2. Sean McGrath is listed as TE2
This one is really surprising. Hunter Henry is slotted behind Antonio Gates, and McGrath is listed as the second- string TE. Could McGrath be the better blocker of the three? I could see Henry being a pass-first style tight and, and having him and Gates on the field at the same time wouldn’t make much sense if we want more blockers on the grass. Reports have said that Henry looks very impressive, but I did notice McGrath getting a lot of team reps at tight end during practice at FanFest.
Once again, my theory could be wrong and these are just depth charts made for preseason alone, but I’m sure the Chargers want as many looks as they can get with Henry. Benching him wouldn’t make sense in the preseason, unless they feel like he has proved himself otherwise already.
3. James Jones is our fifth-string Wide Receiver
We signed a proven veteran and he’s getting beat out by Dontrelle Inman and Tyrell Williams. Wow. Are the Chargers using him as a camp body for competition? Maybe so. Williams has really impressed during practices, but I feel like Jones has the edge over Inman for sure. However, the depth chart begs to differ my opinion.
This is an interesting battle for the slot. Inman versus Williams versus Jones. I’ve got my money on Williams, but a part of me says Jones will take it also. This will be something to watch for during preseason, so keep your eyes peeled.
4. Kellen Clemens is still our backup quarterback!?!
I don’t know how that’s possible, but I thought Zach Mettenberger would have at least beat him out for the No. 2 spot. I’m sure that will be subject to change in the coming weeks, and even Mike Bercovici will be looking to make a big impression against other teams. The backup quarterback competition is going to be really fun to watch. Mettenberger is favored to win the backup role, but I really like Bercovici’s chances as well. Keep an eye for this group next week as well.
Those were my top observations on the release of the depth chart. It is an interesting lineup for sure. I am almost positive that these positions will be subject to change in the coming weeks, and that this depth chart is just a preseason version. There are going to be some really interesting positional battles going on this year. Which positional battles are you guys looking forward to?