LA Chargers News

Chargers 2019 player rankings No. 14: Air guitar

JACKSONVILLE, FL - NOVEMBER 12: Austin Ekeler #30 of the Los Angeles Chargers beats Jalen Ramsey #20 of the Jacksonville Jaguars for a 22-yard touchdown in the second half of their game at EverBank Field on November 12, 2017 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
JACKSONVILLE, FL - NOVEMBER 12: Austin Ekeler #30 of the Los Angeles Chargers beats Jalen Ramsey #20 of the Jacksonville Jaguars for a 22-yard touchdown in the second half of their game at EverBank Field on November 12, 2017 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
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CARSON, CA – OCTOBER 07: Austin Ekeler #30 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates his touchdown with Keenan Allen #13 to take a 10-3 lead over the Oakland Raiders during the second quarter at StubHub Center on October 7, 2018 in Carson, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
CARSON, CA – OCTOBER 07: Austin Ekeler #30 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates his touchdown with Keenan Allen #13 to take a 10-3 lead over the Oakland Raiders during the second quarter at StubHub Center on October 7, 2018 in Carson, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Chargers rankings: Why Ekeler isn’t higher

Though the coaches didn’t do him any favors, Ekeler had two big duds in two of his feature appearances with Gordon sidelined:

  • Titans: 12 carries for 42 yards, five receptions for 26 yards
  • Steelers: 13 carries for 21 yards, five receptions for 22 yards

For Ekeler to make it higher on the list, he’ll also need to play more offensive snaps. Though No. 30 is an efficient game-changing player, it’s hard to put a running back who only played in 34.97 percent of the team’s 2018 offensive snaps over someone like a center, left tackle, or wide receiver who plays in over double those numbers. For reference, Antonio Gates played in 36.58 percent of the team’s snaps last year.

Next. Four Chargers who could make their first Pro-Bowl this season

Ekeler may do his job better than half the remaining players on the list, but a lack of opportunities overall and lower numbers in games he started keep him from rising up the list. He’s one of the most exciting players to watch on offense, and will all but likely increase his touches in 2019. For now, he’s the 14th-ranked player, but no one on the roster has a greater chance make a significant move up the list.

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