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Ingram, Taylor to get extra looks in Chargers' final month

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Posted Dec. 03, 2012 @ 4:59 p.m. ET
By Kevin Fishbain

The Chargers haven’t been mathematically eliminated from the postseason, but for all intents and purposes, players and coaches are playing for jobs at this point. Norv Turner’s fate is likely sealed, but in the final month of the season, injuries will pave the way for some youngsters to show what’s in store for San Diego’s future.

This began recently with the increased playing time for rookie DE Kendall Reyes, and OLB Melvin Ingram will get more opportunities going forward as well. We heard earlier in the season that the Chargers had wanted to get Ingram more snaps, part of the reason the linebacker rotation decreased, and with Jarret Johnson’s injury, Ingram started in Week 13. The first-rounder played in 58 of 76 snaps and had five tackles, including one for a loss, and a pass defensed. Ingram was expected to be mainly a sub-package player as a rookie, and now he can show if he's worthy of playing a bigger role in 2013.

SS Atari Bigby was a bright spot this season, starting the first 11 games, but his year is over after a groin injury. Corey Lynch started in his place in Week 13, but perhaps more notably, Bigby’s injury allowed for third-round rookie Brandon Taylor to be active for the first time this season. He played mainly on special teams, seeing only two defensive snaps. Taylor seemed destined for a "redshirt" year, and we’re told the Chargers didn’t want to force it with the LSU product.  

“(Taylor's) a good player. He’s an aware player and a physical player,” Turner said last week, per the team’s website. “Obviously he played at a high level in college, so this game won’t be too big for him. It does come fast, so he will have to adjust quickly. But he can handle it.”

If Taylor gets opportunities on defense and makes the most of them, it will only bolster the Chargers’ secondary looking ahead to 2013.  

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