Thoughts on the San Diego Chargers' 53-Man Roster and Cuts

Camrin BaucomContributor IIISeptember 4, 2011

Thoughts on the San Diego Chargers' 53-Man Roster and Cuts

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    The San Diego Chargers shaved down their roster to 53 players Saturday afternoon, and there were some obvious choices as well as some intriguing surprises. 

    Rookies look to have their dreams fulfilled and veterans look to continue their football journey and succeed in the business.

    This is a rundown of the "somewhat final" 53-man roster. I say "somewhat final" because team's rosters are constantly changing from getting players into the practice squad, from the practice squad and into the active roster, injuries, cutting players, etc.

    Anyway, I'm going to run down the offense first, and then on to the defense of the Chargers' 53-man roster.


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    Philip Rivers, Billy Volek

    Cut: Scott Tolzien

    Rivers and Volek were easy to predict.

    Tolzien shined in his last preseason game against the San Francisco 49ers. Tolzien is now on the waiver wire and is getting interest from the one team he performed his best against. Yep, the 49ers. San Francisco is looking to pick him up—especially because it has depth issues at quarterback.

Running Backs

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    Ryan Mathews, Mike Tolbert, Jacob Hester and Jordan Todman

    Cut: Curtis Brinkley, Isaac Odim and Frank Summers

    Mathews, Tolbert and Hester were obvious choices. The Chargers also kept Jordan Todman, who had an astounding preseason. Todman had the most touches on the ball this preseason, 28, and averaged 4.0 yards per carry, which is decent for a third-string running back—or any running back in general.

    We didn't see much of Brinkley or Odim, but they did their best.

Wide Receivers

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    Vincent Jackson, Malcom Floyd, Patrick Crayton, Vincent Brown, Richard Goodman and Bryan Walters

    Cut: Seyi Ajirotutu, Laurent Robinson and Kelley Washington

    I like the choices made in this position, but now comes the question: Why Ajirotutu?

    The kid was a hero in the game against the Houston Texans last season with over 100 yards and two touchdowns.

    I guess the Chargers believe in Bryan Walters and Richard Goodman. There just wasn't enough room for Ajirotutu in the depth chart. I guess they know some things that we, the fans, don't.

Tight Ends

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    Antonio Gates, Randy McMichael and Kory Sperry

    Cut: Charles Davis and Brad Taylor

    No surprises here. The main three were clear choices. Davis and Taylor weren't even noticeable.

Offensive Line

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    Jeromy Clary, Kris Dielman, Nick Hardwick, Louis Vasquez, Marcus McNeill, Scott Mruczkowski, Brandyn Dombrowski and Tyronne Green

    Cut: Hutch Eckerson, Stephen Schilling, Bo Thran and Eric Young

    I like the O-line. It has depth with solid veterans who have the proven skill to be on the roster.

    I wish they could've kept Schilling, though. That guy was nasty.

Defensive Line

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    Luis CastilloJacques Cesaire, Antonio Garay, Corey Liuget, Vaughn Martin and Cam Thomas

    Cut: Mike Blanc, Charlie Bryant and Ogemdi Nwagbuo

    IR: Damik Scafe

    Corey Liuget has been a stud this preseason. I wouldn't be surprised if he were to start in Week 1. If he's not, I understand the decision to go with Cesaire.


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    Antwan Barnes, Donald Butler, Stephen Cooper, Na’il DiggsLarry EnglishAndrew GachkarDarryl GambleTravis LaBoyJonas MoutonShaun Phillips and Takeo Spikes

    Cut: Bront Bird, Kevin Bentley, Carl Ihenacho and Kion Wilson

    IR: Nick Polk

    I love the story of Darryl Gamble, a fan favorite among Charger fans. With him on the roster, the Chargers have gone 15 straight seasons with an undrafted rookie making the final 53.

    The addition of Na'il Diggs could make things interesting. We'll see how he makes an impact.

    Stephen Cooper is on the final roster with a torn bicep. The Chargers must have faith in him to provide depth—even with an injury. 


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    Antoine Cason, Marcus Gilchrist, Dante Hughes, Quentin Jammer and Shareece Wright

    Cut: Ramon Broadway and Traye Simmons

    This is a good group of cornerbacks. Stable and provided with new, fresh legs in Gilchrist and Wright, the Chargers cornerbacks are set for 2011.


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    Steve GregoryBob Sanders, Darrell Stuckey, C.J. Wallace and Eric Weddle

    Cuts: Quinton Teal

    The safety tandem of Eric Weddle and Bob Sanders should be one of the best during the 2011 season. While Sanders stops ball-carriers with stunning tackles, Weddle provides efficient tackling at the safety position—something he's been doing his entire career in San Diego.

Special Teams

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    Kicker: Nate Kaeding

    Punter: Mike Scifres

    Long Snapper: Mike Windt

    Cuts: Ricky Schmitt, David Binn (August 30)

    Kaeding and Scifres are one of the best special team combos in the NFL today. Kaeding is working on his leg power for more long-yardage field goals and kickoffs. He won't need to do much, thanks to the new 35-yard starting kickoff rule.

    David Binn, 17-year veteran long snapper, was released last Tuesday. It was a it was a heartbreaking divorce for Binn, the Chargers and the fans.

    List of 2011 Chargers 53-man roster

    List of 2011 Chargers roster cuts