Today’s mailbag question comes from John (@CoachJMT). If you have any Chargers’ questions for us, please feel free to tweet them @cover32_SD.
@cover32_SD Who’s got the most to prove in tomorrow’s preseason opener against Dallas?
— John Tomczak (@Coach_JMT) August 6, 2014
Thanks, John. I don’t think any specific player has the most to “prove” per say, but rather the most to gain. After reading Dan Pizzuta’s column from this morning, I was reminded of the insignificance within this one game. While it’s nice for the fans to see the Bolts go against a true opposition, the coaching staff is able to evaluate these players each day during practice, and will use the opener as a litmus test. As Dan said, this game is more about the process than the result; the little things will matter more than the stat book at the end of Thursday evening.
With that being said, I think this game gives lesser known players the opportunity to shine. Sure, many depth players on the roster will be duking it for the final spots on the 53-man, but this game gives players who won’t see a lot of action in the regular season a chance to put some solid work on tape.
Based on this assessment, I turn to Chargers’ quarterback, Brad Sorensen. The 7th-round pick in 2013 was fairly impressive for the Chargers a year ago in exhibition work. He finished with 272 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. At times, he looked flustered like most NFL rookies, but the young signal caller has the look of an NFL head man. At 6’5” 230 pounds, Sonresen became the first player ever drafted out of Southern Utah, and could make the Chargers’ brass look like geniuses with another strong preseason.
The good news for Sorensen is the team did not add another quarterback this offseason. Typically, teams will bring four quarterbacks into camp to ensure availability in drills and early games. However, the Chargers depth chart consists of Philip Rivers, Kellen Clemens, and Sorensen. With Rivers and Clemens starting a combined 26 games last season, this preseason is all about second-year player. Clemens will need some time to get familiar with the verbage and scheme, but the man under control of the offense for the majority of the next four weeks will be #4.
And with this opportunity, the 26-year old has a chance to prove he is capable of starting in the NFL. Philip Rivers turns 33 this season, and is showing no signs of slowing down, but the youngster can prove to a multitude of NFL teams he has what it takes. By putting together a strong few weeks, Sorensen has the most to gain of any player on the Chargers’ roster. If nothing else, he can show his mastery of the offense and earn the backup role for years to come.
We will see a lot of Sorensen tomorrow night, and see how far he has come in one year. Hopefully, he is ready to take full advantage of the spotlight because after August, he may not play in a competitive game again until 2015.