The Los Angeles Chargers have officially set their initial roster for the 2017 season. On Saturday, September 2, the Bolts brass made the moves necessary to trim down to 53 players on the active roster.
Here’s a look at the initial roster for the Chargers:
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The Quarterbacks (2)
The Chargers decided to release Kellen Clemens, even though many had considered him to be safe. Head coach Anthony Lynn had originally stated that it was his hope to keep three quarterbacks on the roster. Cardale Jones seemed to get better as time progressed and obviously showed the team that he would provide the Bolts with sufficient security behind Philip Rivers.
The Offensive Backs (4)
It may seem like a surprise to see veterans Andre Williams and Kenjon Barner be released. However, Austin Ekeler played his way on the roster in the last two preseason games with solid play. Branden Oliver and Derek Watt round out a well-equipped backfield.
The Wide Receivers (6)
Chargers fans were pleasantly surprised to hear that Mike Williams will be on the active roster and not staying on the PUP to start the season. While Williams will likely see little to no action for the first few games, it is great to know that the highly touted rookie will be a big part of the offensive gameplan this year. The Chargers might still explore the trade marker for Dontrelle Inman, but for now, he remains on the roster.
The Tight Ends (4)
The Chargers decision to release Jeff Cumberland was bit surprising, but not shocking. Sean Culkin clearly earned this roster spot over Cumberland during the preseason. Culkin was able to be effective in both blocking and receiving, and this versatility earned him the nod.
The Offensive Line (8)
Conspicuous by his absence, Max Tuerk is suspended for the first four games and will not count against the roster for that stretch. The loss of Forrest Lamp for the season probably means that they will be searching the waiver wire for an addition. It it telling that they kept only eight offensive lineman. Tyreek Burwell was the notable roster cut here.
The Defensive Line (9)
The defensive line will be formidable with Bosa and Ingram as its bookends. Chris McCain and Brandon Mebane has solid preseasons. Like, Max Tuerk, Tenny Palepoi is suspended for the first game of the year and will not count against the roster until the opening game has concluded.
The Linebackers (7)
With Denzel Perryman expected to be placed on injured reserve-designated to return, the linebacking crew was thought to be A bit thin. Korey Toomer had a great showing in preseason and his presence on the team is no surprise. The Bolts may also look to the waiver wire for help here. Keep a sharp eye.
The Cornerbacks (5)
It was a bit of a surprise that Michael Davis was released instead of Craig Mager. Mager seemed to be on the fast track out of LA but the team has decided to keep him on the roster. Desmond King quickly became a fan favorite over the past month, and earned his roster spot for certain.
The Safeties (5)
The surprise cut of the day was Dwight Lowery. Many considered him to be the projected starter just a couple of months ago. Adrian Phillips and Dexter McCoil won the favor of Gus Bradley and will see plenty of playing time come the regular season.
The Special Teamers (3)
K Younghoe Koo
P Drew Kaser
LS Mike Windt
Younghoe Koo obviously showed the coaching staff enough during practices to win the kicking battle against incumbent Josh Lambo. Koo was only allowed to attempt one kick during the preseason. Despite being a bit inconsistent in kickoffs, he will be the Bolts kicker in 2017.
As with most teams, the Chargers will likely look to add recent releases from other teams in some key positions of need, such as offensive line and linebacker. Therefore, this initial roster may look different when they take the field against the Denver Broncos on Monday, September 11th.
What do you think, Chargers Nation? We’d love to hear your thoughts.
– Mike D’Abate is the Managing Editor for cover32/Chargers and covers the Los Angeles Chargers.