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LA Chargers countdown to 2020: Best number 88 in team history

Virgil Green, LA Chargers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Virgil Green, LA Chargers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
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There are 88 days until we see the LA Chargers back in action.

Counting today, there are officially 88 days until the LA Chargers kickoff their 2020 season in Week 1 against Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals.

To countdown the 2020 season, we have been naming the best player to wear each number that coincides with the number of days remaining until Week 1. When it is all said and done, we will have named the best player to wear any number in Charger history.

So far, there have not been any current Chargers that have taken home the honor and that will continue with number 88. Virgil Green is the team’s current number 88 and while he is really good as a blocking specialist tight end, he is nowhere close to the best number 88 in team history.

The best number 88 in team history played a long, long time ago, back before wide receivers were even called wide receivers.

The best number 88 in LA Chargers’ history: Don Norton

Don Norton was a left end, which was the father of the wide receiver position. Ends were more like tight ends, though, as they would line up at the end of the offensive line. Eventually, the position blossomed into the wide receiver position that we know and love today.

While Norton’s numbers are not all that impressive in the grand scheme of things, compared to the rest of his era, he was one of the best pass-catchers in the league.

Norton played for the Chargers from 1960 to 1966, retiring right when the NFL-AFL merger was transpiring but before the two leagues actually started to have a joint regular season.

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Norton racked up 3,486 receiving yards and 27 receiving touchdowns in his seven seasons with the Chargers. His two best seasons were in 1961 and 1962, where he had a combined 1,587 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns.

Norton ranked 11th in both receiving yards and touchdowns n the AF from 1960-65. He was part of one of the better passing attacks in the AFL for that time alongside Lance Alworth and Dave Kocourek.

Despite his numbers not being that exceptional by today’s standards, Norton still has more receiving yards than any other number 88 in Chargers’ history, which is really impressive considering the era that he played in.

Next. Best number 89 in team history

The best number 88 in LA Chargers history is a throwback to a different era of football and there definitely are more current Charger fans that did not watch Norton. Regardless, he is the best to wear the double snowmen.

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