2. Darius Jennings
The LA Chargers signed Darius Jennings in what was a really under-the-radar free agency move during the offseason. Jennings is a solid special teams returner that could also help the team in the gadget play department.
However, the team then went on to draft Virginia’s Joe Reed, who profiles as a nearly identical option for the Chargers offense with a higher ceiling as a receiver in the offense. For that reason, Jennings was already starting a step behind and did not make the final roster.
While on paper it makes sense, it was still a bit of a surprise. Yes, Reed is the better option for the Chargers and provides the exact same kind of production. However, the team is running six wide receivers for insurance with Mike Williams’ shoulder injury and it is surprising to not see Jennings be one of them.
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The Chargers have a lot of inexperience behind Keenan Allen and Williams in the receiver room and it would have been beneficial to keep a veteran receiver like Jennings on the active roster as the WR6.
Not only does it give the team an experienced option later in the depth chart but it also provides a security blanket if Joe Reed gets banged up in-game. If Reed goes down with an injury then who is going to return kicks for the rest of the game?
It might not seem like that big of a deal but it kind of is. That is the kind of thing that can swing an entire game — one muffed punt by someone who was not expecting to return punts on a given day.