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LA Chargers: Grading the Bolts’ 2020 tight end group

JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA - DECEMBER 08: Hunter Henry #86 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates a touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the second quarter at TIAA Bank Field on December 08, 2019 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Harry Aaron/Getty Images)
JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA - DECEMBER 08: Hunter Henry #86 of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates a touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the second quarter at TIAA Bank Field on December 08, 2019 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Harry Aaron/Getty Images)
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(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) – LA Chargers
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) – LA Chargers

LA Chargers’ final grade

The tight end group will only be as good as their top option in Henry. He’s still a top 10 tight end, even if he’s not in the top tier group mentioned earlier. Fans really just want to see Henry stay healthy and hopefully play a full season. Two years after the ACL injury now, I’m hopeful that he’ll return to his peak athleticism. If so, a career year may be in store for him, especially with Taylor at quarterback.

Green could very well be in for an uptick in production and snaps. The Chargers are going to run the ball more, and if Henry isn’t blocking, that role could fall into Green’s lap. The tight ends behind him on the depth chart aren’t developed enough as blockers yet. Cheap, effective run/pass blockers don’t grow on trees, and that’s why Green still is the second tight end on the depth chart.

The third tight end role is much less clear as of now. Parham probably has the lead in terms of making the roster. He’s not quite developed, but he’s young with a ton of untapped potential.

Making a couple plays in the preseason or impressing in training camp could be the difference for him. He has played professional football more recently than Anderson or Vollert, despite it being the XFL. If the Chargers want a speedy slot threat, Anderson may be the direction they lean in.

Grading the defensive line. Chargers

The tight end group for the Chargers is pretty solid when looking at the players, but a lot of it does depend on Henry’s health. If he does start for a full season, it would be such a boost for the team. Concerns about his knees and uncertainty around the third tight end spot do take the grade down for me a little.

 LA Chargers TE grade: B-

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