Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports – LA Chargers
Defensive Tackles (5): Linval Joseph, Justin Jones, Jerry Tillery, Christian Covington, Breiden Fehoko
The LA Chargers got drastically better production out of Linval Joseph last season than they were previously getting out of Brandon Mebane. It may have not shown up in the form of sacks, but Joseph’s 26 pressures were 18 more than Mebane had in 2019. He’s stout against the run and hasn’t really shown any signs of age-related decline.
Justin Jones and Jerry Tillery will also be back. Jones has room to improve as a pass rusher, but he’s the team’s best run defender. Despite an inconsistent 2020 from Tillery, he has to be thought of as a breakout candidate due to what we saw from him in the first half of the season. The numerous defensive line injuries around them did reduce chances for both to be as productive as they could’ve been.
Christian Covington is the team’s new Damion Square as I see it. He’s a veteran rotational defensive tackle. Covington has a little more to offer as a pass rusher but has struggled against the run in the last two seasons. In fairness, the lines around him have been worse than when he was with Houston.
The last spot could go to a number of players here, but I picked Breiden Fehoko. Cortez Broughton could also be a contender as well as some of the UDFAs/Spring Leaguers. Fehoko just seems like the more natural fit in terms of a player that could come in for Joseph or Jones in a pinch.