Los Angeles Chargers: Building the all-time budget offense

LaDainian Tomlinson running back for the San Diego Chargers rushes loking for a hole in a game against the New England Patriots at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California on January 14, 2007. (Photo by Peter Brouillet/Getty Images)
LaDainian Tomlinson running back for the San Diego Chargers rushes loking for a hole in a game against the New England Patriots at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California on January 14, 2007. (Photo by Peter Brouillet/Getty Images) /

The Los Angeles Chargers have had some great players throughout the team’s history, enough great players that we can construct an all-time offense budget team.

The Los Angeles Chargers may not have won a Super Bowl in their franchise history but unlike other teams without a ring, the Chargers have a lot of history.

As one of the original AFL teams, the Chargers have been in the NFL since the merger and have had countless memorable moments and all-time players, it is just a shame that the team has never been able to piece it all together.

But hey, just because the team has not won a ring does not mean it doesn’t have history. There is a long enough list of all-time greats that we could create an all-time offense budget challenge (which you can see below).

Without further ado, here is how we would build our all-time Los Angeles Chargers offense budget team.

Quarterback: Dan Fouts ($2)

As much as I love Philip Rivers as I grew up watching Rivers and did not get a chance to watch Dan Fouts live, we have a budget to adhere to and getting Fouts for only $2 is a great price.

Rivers may have had the better all-time career than Fouts, but in terms of who was better at their prime compared to their peers, Fouts probably gets the nod, as he led the league in passing yards four times and touchdowns twice.

Running Back: LaDainian Tomlinson ($3)

C’mon, is there any other player that we could select at the running back position? Tomlinson is arguably the greatest player in Charger history, if not Junior Seau, and is one of the greatest running backs in NFL history as well.

He has the record for most touchdowns in a single season, is third all-time in non-quarterback touchdowns and is seventh all-time in rushing yards. It is a shame that he was not included in the NFL’s Top 100, as he is arguably a top-five running back all-time.

Fullback: Derek Watt, ($1)

Lorenzo Neal was a huge reason for LT’s success in the mid-2000s but we have to save some money because of the Tomlinson selection and are going with the most recent fullback to grace the Chargers, Derek Watt.

The Chargers do not have a long and storied history of fullbacks, so we gave the one-dollar spot to Watt because of a bit of recency bias.

Wide receiver 1: Lance Alworth ($3)

For the receivers, we tried to break the two options into modern-day wide receivers and historic wide receivers, with the historical wide receivers getting the number one receiver spot.

And with that position, I want someone who I know is going to be great and who had a great Charger career. There is no better option than seven-time Pro Bowler, six-time All-Pro, Hall of Famer and Chargers’ all-time leader in receiving yards, Lance Alworth.

Wide receiver 2: Vincent Jackson ($1)

Part of the reason why I went with Alworth as my number one receiver is because I knew that I was going to select Vincent Jackson as the second receiver. Jackson does not have as good of overall numbers with the Chargers as Allen and Floyd, because three of his prime years were with Tampa Bay, but he was elite when he was at the top of his game.

Tight end: Antonio Gates ($3)

I almost went with Kellen Winslow for budget reasons, but I could not ignore who I think is the best tight end of all-time, Antonio Gates.

We have to take a slightly worse offensive lineman as a result but it is hard to pass on an eight-time Pro Bowler, three-time All-Pro and the tight end with the most touchdowns, ever.

Left tackle: Marcus McNeill ($2)

Marcus McNeill had a short run with the Los Angeles Chargers, only playing from 2006 to 2011, but he was dang good while he was in the league. He was a Pro Bowler in his first two seasons in the NFL, and if we are getting that version of McNeill for $2 then sign me up.

Left guard: Kris Dielman ($2)

Some really good options here but with a budget in mind, I have to go with the $2 option in Kris Dielman, who may be more well known than some of the other linemen on this team, as Dielman was a four-time Pro Bowler with the Chargers from 2003-2011.

Center: Courtney Hall ($1)

This is where we make up for the $3 selection of Antonio Gates. Courtney Hall may not have any Pro Bowls under his belt, but he as an above-average center for the Chargers eight years, missing only one game in his first seven seasons.

Right guard: Ed White ($2)

Ed White played a long time in the NFL in the 60s and 70s and his best seasons came with the Minnesota Vikings. However, he was still good with the Chargers, as he was named to the Pro Bowl in 1979 as a Charger. For eight years, White was an above-average guard for the Chargers.

Right tackle: Ron Mix ($2)

You could easily make the case that Ron Mix should be the $3 player, but he isn’t, so we get to take him as a $2 player to stay under budget. Mix is a Hall of Famer and was a nine-time All-Pro with the Chargers from 1960 to 1968. That is elite.

The only reason why we chose Russ Washington over Mix is that Washington played more years with the Chargers and accumulated a higher AV as a result.

Total spent: $22

Next. Five-year history of the sixth overall pick

How would you build your Los Angeles Chargers all-time offense?