The San Diego Chargers suffered another devastating loss on Sunday. Unfortunately, they also suffered another devastating injury.
According to NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport, Chargers nose tackle Brandon Mebane tore his biceps during Sunday’s game against the Miami Dolphins. He will reportedly miss the remainder of the year.
Another major injury for the #Chargers: Sources say DL Brandon Mebane tore his biceps and is out for the season
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 14, 2016
Another crushing blow to an already depleted team. The Chargers lost several key players to injuries already this season, and now the team’s starting nose tackle will be joining that long list (the All-Pro IR, if you will).
Losing Mebane, who signed a three-year deal in the offseason, might be one of the biggest losses for this team, considering the impact he quickly made during his first year with the Bolts. The Chargers, who finished No. 27 and No. 26 overall in rushing defense the last two seasons, rank No. 9 overall in 2016. They do lead the league in rushing touchdowns allowed (14), but they are allowing just 87.4 rushing yards per game, which is good for sixth-best.
Obviously, Mebane clogging up the middle is a big reason why they’ve improved. Not only that, but the 31-year-old brings leadership and passion to the defense. It’s a young core that, at times, has looked dominant. They are fast, strong and are creating turnovers (20 takeaways). Defensive linemen Tenny Palepoi and Damion Square will now have to step up in Mebane’s absence. The only true backup nose tackle the Chargers have though is Ryan Carrethers. The 2014 fifth-round pick is on the practice squad as of now.
It’s tough to say, but I don’t think the Chargers can come back from this one. You win the game in the trenches, something the Chargers haven’t been able to do on offense. Now, a key piece on your defensive line is out for the season, and nobody can replace what he’s done.