LA Chargers News

How do the Chargers stack up defensively compared to the rest of the division?

DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 30: Inside linebacker Jatavis Brown
DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 30: Inside linebacker Jatavis Brown
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In my last article I analyzed how the Los Angeles Chargers stack up offensively in regards to the rest of the AFC West, and it turns out that they are very strong in that respect. How do the Chargers rank defensively? Let’s find out.

Defensive Line:

CLEVELAND, OH – DECEMBER 24: Joey Bosa
CLEVELAND, OH – DECEMBER 24: Joey Bosa

1. Joey Bosa, Melvin Ingram – LAC

2. Khalil Mack, Mario Edwards – OAK

3. Derek Wolfe, Domata Peko – DEN

4. Chris Jones, Rakeem Nunez-Roches – KC

While reigning DPOY Khalil Mack is easily one of the top players in the NFL, the duo of Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram is perhaps the strongest in the league. While Denver and Kansas City both have strong pass rushes, most of their production comes from the linebacker position, and therefore they fall to the bottom on this list.

Cornerbacks:

CHARLOTTE, NC – DECEMBER 11: Casey Hayward
CHARLOTTE, NC – DECEMBER 11: Casey Hayward

1. Aqib Talib, Chris Harris Jr., Bradley Roby – DEN

2. Casey Hayward, Jason Verrett – LAC

3. Marcus Peters, Phillip Gaines – KC

4. Sean Smith, David Amerson – OAK

The Denver Broncos have arguably the best cornerback group in the NFL, but the Chargers are not too far from them. While Casey Hayward topped the league in interceptions last year, Jason Verrett missed most of the season with an injury, but when healthy, he is widely considered as one of the top cornerbacks in the league. Marcus Peters is also a very good corner, but the rest of the Chiefs’ group is not as widely touted.

Linebackers:

CHARLOTTE, NC – DECEMBER 11: Cam Newton
CHARLOTTE, NC – DECEMBER 11: Cam Newton

1. Von Miller, Brandon Marshall, Shane Ray – DEN

2. Justin Houston, Tamba Hali – KC

3. Denzel Perryman, Jatavis Brown – LAC

4. Bruce Irvin, Perry Riley – OAK

Von Miller, one of the greatest players in the NFL, tops off Denver’s studly linebacking corps, while Justin Houston and Tamba Hali are the fore-runners for Kansas City’s group. Denzel Perryman and Jatavis Brown have looked promising thus far into their careers, but still have a lot to prove until they can be considered elite.

Safeties:

CHARLOTTE, NC – NOVEMBER 13: Tre Boston
CHARLOTTE, NC – NOVEMBER 13: Tre Boston

1. Eric Berry, Ron Parker- KC

2. T.J. Ward, Darian Stewart – DEN

3. Reggie Nelson, Karl Joseph – OAK

4. Tre Boston, Jahleel Addae – LAC

Not only is Eric Berry one of the greatest comeback stories of all time, but he is easily a top-5 safety in the NFL today. Denver and Oakland also have rather strong safety groups, putting the Chargers far behind in this facet. Hopefully, the position will be improved this season, but for now, it leaves something to be desired.

How do you think the Chargers compare defensively to the rest of the teams in the AFC West? Let us know in the comments.

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