The injury woes continue for the San Diego Chargers in 2016, and it’s hard to say what’s worse between them and the fact that the team is off to a 1-2 start when it could easily be 3-0. This sounds familiar, right Chargers fans?
Last season, the Chargers were in most every game, but couldn’t find a way to pull the close ones out. In addition, the team was riddled with injuries and now, they’ve lost their third starter in as many weeks to an ACL injury.
Keenan Allen and Danny Woodhead have already been lost for the year (and don’t forget about Stevie Johnson) and now, linebacker Manti Te’o will reportedly miss the rest of the season for the same reason. Three games played, three starters down.
The last thing Mike McCoy and his staff needed this season was a repeat of last year. Many questions now surround this team. Can they rebound and make a playoff push? Who will be the players that step up in the midst of all these injuries? But here’s one more: Has Te’o played his last game in San Diego?
Crap news for Manti Te'o. He's come a long way. https://t.co/UI8cQbgRoz
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) September 26, 2016
It’s quite possible, because the last thing Te’o needed was to miss 13 games due to injury in what many considered to be a make-or-break season for him. To make matters worse, Te’o was off to a good start this year. He ranked third on the team with 17 tackles, but it appears he is a player the team may have to move on from.
Te’o has yet to play in a full 16-game season since the team drafted him in the second round of the 2013 NFL draft. In the most recent draft, the team used picks in the later rounds to select Jatavis Brown and Joshua Perry. Those picks weren’t made by accident.
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Te’o is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent following the season, but the team will also have to decide how to retain key players such as Woodhead, Melvin Ingram and Jahleel Addae. Would you pay to keep a guy that has largely been a disappointment such as Te’o?
Brown was having a solid rookie season even with Te’o in the lineup and now, he should be able to convince the organization that the spot that has been occupied by Te’o since 2013 should belong to him.
McCoy says there is a "Wow Factor" to Jatavis Brown. Likes what he sees from rookie.
— Ricky Henne (@ChargersRHenne) September 26, 2016
There was a chance that Te’o was going to be allowed to find employment elsewhere next year even if he played in every game this year and played well. His season-ending injury just sealed his fate because as we’ve pointed out, the Chargers have better, younger options.