LA Chargers News

Chargers: Five reasons to be optimistic about injuries

MIAMI, FLORIDA - SEPTEMBER 29: Michael Davis #43 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates with Drue Tranquill #49 after a interception against the Miami Dolphins during the fourth quarter at Hard Rock Stadium on September 29, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FLORIDA - SEPTEMBER 29: Michael Davis #43 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates with Drue Tranquill #49 after a interception against the Miami Dolphins during the fourth quarter at Hard Rock Stadium on September 29, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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CHESTNUT HILL, MA – SEPTEMBER 16: Drue Tranquill #23 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish attempts to tackle Travis Levy #35 of the Boston College Eagles during the first half at Alumni Stadium on September 16, 2017 in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Tim Bradbury/Getty Images)
CHESTNUT HILL, MA – SEPTEMBER 16: Drue Tranquill #23 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish attempts to tackle Travis Levy #35 of the Boston College Eagles during the first half at Alumni Stadium on September 16, 2017 in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Tim Bradbury/Getty Images) /

Chargers will be able to get Drue Tranquill on the field more

Drue Tranquill is rated as the team’s best coverage linebacker, which, believe it or not, is not surprising considering he was (again, bear with me here) a great coverage linebacker coming out of college. Interesting.

No. 49, who blew up the preseason and was easily the team’s best defender, is ranked 32nd in pass coverage. It’s neither terrible not excellent, but it sure beats 107th-ranked Thomas Davis. Davis is much better as a run defender, and should be used as such, but it’s clear either Tranquill or Kyzir White need to take his place on passing downs.

As explosive as Perryman can be at times, he has been wildly inaccurate; in fact, his nine missed tackles on 97 snaps are the worst in the NFL. Those 97 snaps, by the way, are the lowest total snaps by a linebacker ranked by missed tackles until Darron Lee at 26th, who has four missed tackles on 94 snaps. Tranquill, who clearly could tackle well in the preseason, is to the surprise of no one the seventh-best tackler in the NFL, according to Pro Football Focus. Though it’s only 30 snaps, zero missed tackles is still zero missed tackles.

With Perryman in and out of the lineup, Tranquill played 14 snaps at middle linebacker against the Broncos, according to Pro Football Focus.

Grading the Chargers in loss to Denver. Next

Perryman’s injuries, though not season-ending or even forcing him out of the game, do provide a glimpse at what someone like Tranquill could do. All of the previously mentioned injuries, actually, do give fans and coaches a better idea of how some of their depth pieces function in feature or more prominent roles.

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