Chargers place OLT McNeill on IR, sign OT Gaither

Posted Nov. 30, 2011 @ 5:20 p.m.
Posted By PFW staff

The Chargers have placed OLT Marcus McNeill on injured reserve and signed free-agent OT Jared Gaither, the team announced Wednesday.

McNeill suffered a neck stinger in a Thursday-night loss to the Raiders in Week 10. The sixth-year pro out of Auburn had started nine games for the Chargers this season.

Gaither was released by the Chiefs Tuesday. He played in 10 games for Kansas City this season after spending the previous four seasons with the Ravens.

The way we see it

Losing McNeill for the rest of the season is a big loss for the Chargers. The offensive line has had problems protecting QB Philip Rivers without McNeill in the lineup, as Brandyn Dombrowski has struggled to replace him. This is the second Pro Bowl-caliber O-lineman San Diego has lost this season because of injury, with Kris Dielman going on I.R. a couple weeks ago with a concussion.

Gaither was a solid player for the Ravens as their starting left tackle in 2008 and 09, The Chargers hope he can play at that level again. He was unable to do so for a Chiefs team that could use an upgrade at the OT positions.