LA Chargers News

Los Angeles Chargers 53-man roster: Decisions that remain unclear

CARSON, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 18: Jaylen Watkins #27 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates his interception at fans with Brandon Facyson #28 in the first half against the New Orleans Saints during a preseason game at Dignity Health Sports Park on August 18, 2019 in Carson, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
CARSON, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 18: Jaylen Watkins #27 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates his interception at fans with Brandon Facyson #28 in the first half against the New Orleans Saints during a preseason game at Dignity Health Sports Park on August 18, 2019 in Carson, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
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Detrez Newsome or Troymaine Pope?

Melvin Gordon is holding out and it appears that will go into the regular season. The team is confident that Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson can give the team what it needs in Gordon’s absence, but depth is always important, especially when neither of those guys is an every-down back like Gordon.

So who will be the No. 3 guy? It was initially assumed that last year’s undrafted sensation, Newsome, would earn that role. But right now, Pope seems to be nudging him out of the way.

Neither player has gained many yards on the ground in the preseason, but Pope has caught six passes for 38 yards while Newsome has just one catch for five yards. Throw in Pope’s punt return for a touchdown last Sunday against the New Orleans Saints and he is making it tough to release him.

This has been a big surprise as Pope is making his seventh stop in the NFL (he had three stints with the Seattle Seahawks) and the 2016 undrafted free agent has yet to latch on anywhere. That is beginning to change in Los Angeles.

Though he was given little chance to make the 53-man roster heading into this season, it’s quite difficult to say that Newsome deserves it more.

The “D-Train” will have to begin to change that this Saturday night against the Seahawks. If he doesn’t, he might have to leave town and hope that the Chargers call him back at some point down the road but to this point, Pope has won the job.

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