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Chargers load up on 'D' to create flexibility

About the Author

Recent posts by Michael Blunda

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Posted Sept. 08, 2010 @ 4:42 p.m. ET
By Michael Blunda

While most teams like to closely balance the number of offensive and defensive players on their roster, the Chargers have opted to take a different approach. Entering Week One, San Diego has 28 defenders, 22 offensive players and three specialists on its 53-man roster, clearly favoring one side of the ball over the other. Trusting in their skill-position guys, the Bolts chose to skimp on offense and really load up on "D." We hear the reason for this is that head coach Norv Turner wanted more versatility with his defense on game days. He and coordinator Ron Rivera were looking for the ability to shift their personnel depending on the opposition — activating more D-linemen against run-heavy teams, for instance — and keeping extra defensive players will allow them such flexibility. The tenuous status of OLB Shawne Merriman (Achilles tendinitis) and the fact that numerous defenders play on special teams also contributed heavily to the decision.


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