I get hyped just thinking about this unit.
Coming into 2017, expectations were somewhat muted. Allen was coming off a huge ACL injury and Travis Benjamin was still working his way into the offense. But man, there’s reason to be excited this year.
Allen re-established himself as a top-five receiver in the league with the likes of Julio Jones and Antonio Brown. Tyrell Williams kept up his high level of play that he had when Allen was previously injured. Benjamin is still a massive speedy deep threat.
Then you get to the potential there is for Mike Williams.
Williams never really got a chance to put himself in the offensive picture coming off a back injury last season. With a full year to heal up, as well as a year to get himself in the system through practice and learning the system and playbook, he could find himself getting to an elite level and his first real breakout season very quickly with his speed and physicality.
Looking at all the positions, this is the one of most concern to me.
It would be a great tight end unit, were it not for Henry’s very unfortunate offseason ACL tear that has ended his season before it started. Henry became the No.1 tight end last year after Antonio Gates had held down that role for so long. From his catching ability to his improving run-blocking ability, his game showed growth and he was starting to show what he could really do.
His injury puts the Chargers in a spot they really can’t get out of.
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Green does enough run blocking and catching to make up for some of what the Chargers lack, but it isn’t really close to enough. There’s the possibility of bringing back Gates, which has been mentioned by both Rivers and Tom Telesco, but he’s at an age where he can’t replace Henry’s athleticism.
You can bolster the tight end unit to try to make up for the huge loss of Henry, but you really can’t replace him right now.
The Chargers’ offense looks to build on an improved 2017 campaign with a potentially elite 2018 campaign. While there are some spots of concerns with tight end and the offensive line, it’s clear that there’s only reason to believe the offense continues to improve this year as a whole.