With this year’s free agency period being a particularly lively one for the Bolts, the Chargers are going to feature a significant amount of new faces this upcoming season. This will be especially the case on the defensive side of the football.
With All-Pro newcomers like J.C. Jackson and Khalil Mack joining the roster along with former Brandon Staley disciples like Sebastian Joseph-Day and Troy Reeder, the Bolts are going to feature a lot of new wrinkles in their personnel in 2022.
Though the opportunity and reality of adding some strong veteran talent is tantalizing, especially for the fanbase, there are of course players already on the roster who will get the short end of the stick from these acquisitions.
Below, Bolt Beat will go over some players currently on LA's roster who will have to work hard to either achieve their starting spots next season or are in jeopardy of losing major reps to newcomers.
3 Chargers whose starting spots are in jeopardy:
No. 3: Drue Tranquill, Inside Linebacker
A fan favorite, Tranquill showed a lot of promise in 2019, his rookie season, before suffering a gruesome ankle injury in the beginning of 2020 forcing him to miss the remainder of the year. Last season, he was able to bounce back and notch 76 combined tackles on the year and play in 14 games along with seven starts.
One of the Bolts’ defensive spark plugs, he had an outstanding game against the AFC Champion Cincinnati Bengals with 10 total tackles and one sack. The linebacker from Notre Dame would end up starting five of the last seven games to end the regular season for the Chargers.
Though Tranquill could still very much be one of the main starting linebackers for the Chargers next season, right now he is penciled in as a backup for the Bolts according to ESPN. With the addition of Staley favorite Reeder along with the team still trying to get the most out of former first-round pick Kenneth Murray, Tranquill seems to be the odd man out.
However, given the departure of leading tackler Kyzir White and also the injury-prone nature of the position, having too many quality linebackers is never a bad thing. Plus, it remains to be seen if Murray can consistently make plays and hold off a steady player like Tranquill for starting reps in 2022.