Chargers All-Time Lists

Los Angeles Chargers: 30 greatest players in franchise history

1987: Quarterback Dan Fouts
1987: Quarterback Dan Fouts
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19 of 31
SAN DIEGO – DECEMBER 1: Wide receiver Wes Chandler #83 of the San Diego Chargers runs with the ball during a game against Buffalo Bills at Jack Murphy Stadium on December 1, 1985 in San Diego, California. The Chargers won 40-7. (Photo by George Rose/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO – DECEMBER 1: Wide receiver Wes Chandler #83 of the San Diego Chargers runs with the ball during a game against Buffalo Bills at Jack Murphy Stadium on December 1, 1985 in San Diego, California. The Chargers won 40-7. (Photo by George Rose/Getty Images)

WR. Wes Chandler. 13. 13. .

With 373 receptions for 6,132 yards and 41 touchdowns, Wes Chandler ranks in the top 10 in every major receiving category for the Chargers. The most impressive aspects of those numbers are that they were posted over 30 years ago and they were amassed over just seven seasons with the team.

Chandler was the No. 3 overall pick of the 1978 NFL Draft by the New Orleans Saints. He spent his first four years as a professional in The Big Easy before being acquired via trade by the Chargers.

After trading away wide receiver John Jefferson due to an issue with his contract, the Chargers needed a replacement. In four seasons with the Saints, Chandler had caught 182 passes, finding the end zone 15 times.

The Saints were a team the Chargers were familiar with trading with, having acquired Chuck Muncie from them less than two years earlier than this swap.

The move to acquire Chandler worked out for the Bolts. He had big shoes to fill. While he may not have made fans completely forget about the ultra-talented Jefferson, he had a better career with the team.

In 1982, he led the entire league in both receiving yards (1,032) and receiving touchdowns (9), earning one of four career trips to the Pro Bowl. As part of one of the most explosive offenses in NFL history during that era, he flourished.

Chandler would finish his career as a member of the San Francisco 49ers, but retired after just four games with the team. The 49ers won the Super Bowl that year. At 32 years old, Chandler was done playing the game.

But that would open the door to his next venture, coaching. In 1991, he became a wide receivers coach for the Orlando Thunder of the World League of American Football. He would also coach at the college level before returning to the sidelines of the NFL as a position coach for the Dallas Cowboys, Minnesota Vikings and Cleveland Browns.

Though he hasn’t played since the late 1980s, it’s hard to name many receivers who were ever more effective for the Bolts.

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