Bolts Strikes, 9/29/17: Ingram Rewarded, Not-So Sweet Home, San Diego, and more.

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Jan 21, 2017; Carson, CA, USA; General view of Los Angeles Chargers helmet at StubHub Center.The Chargers will play the 2017 and 2018 seasons at the StubHub Center as part of Chargers owner Dean Spanos (not pictured) relocation of the franchise from San Diego to Los Angeles. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 21, 2017; Carson, CA, USA; General view of Los Angeles Chargers helmet at StubHub Center.The Chargers will play the 2017 and 2018 seasons at the StubHub Center as part of Chargers owner Dean Spanos (not pictured) relocation of the franchise from San Diego to Los Angeles. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Despite an 0-3 record, there were some bright spots in the week that was for the Los Angeles Chargers. Head coach Anthony Lynn, his staff and the players have been hard at work, looking to turn things around. As we look ahead to Sunday’s matchup with the Philadelphia Eagles, here are some of the week’s highlights in cover32/Chargers’ latest edition of ‘Bolts Strikes.’

 

Williams to Return on Sunday?

Chargers rookie-wide receiver Mike Williams (back) remained limited at practice on Thursday. However, the eye-opener here is that Williams has yet to be ruled out for Week 4 against the Eagles.

Could this be an indication that Williams is set to make his 2017 season-debut on Sunday?

While it’s still possible, it remains unlikely. There hasn’t been much to indicate that Williams is ready to make his NFL debut, just yet. In addition, Coach Lynn has indicated that the team is well aware of the need for him to be thoroughly ready, before returning from an injury, such as the one Williams has. The seventh overall pick from this year’s draft has yet to play this season while recovering from a back injury he suffered during rookie minicamp. While Chargers Nation is anxious to see their exciting new wideout in action, they may need to wait at least one more week. But…anything is possible, after all.

Apr 28, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Chargers first round pick Mike Williams poses for a photo during a press conference at StubHub Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

Ingram is AFC’s Top Defender for September

Chargers defensive end Melvin Ingram has been named the AFC Defensive Player of the Month for September 2017. While Chargers fans might be biased on this one, it is hard for any football fan to argue Ingram’s deservedness of this award. He has 5.5 sacks on the season, making him second in the NFL and first in the AFC. As impressive as that sack number is, the more impressive part is ‘when and how’ he has amassed that total. Ingram’s sacks have consistently come on 3rd downs and at high-leverage points of the game. As a result, he has personally kept the Chargers chances of winning afloat on multiple occasions this year.

Congratulations, Melvin. This is a well-deserved honor. On behalf of Chargers Nation, keep up the great work!

Chargers outside linebacker Melvin Ingram (54) Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Who Says You Can’t Go Home?

Amidst the media frenzy of National Anthem protests and television ratings, a wrinkle developed this past week on the fate of the ‘Fight for LA.’ According to various reports, there had been speculation about the possibility of the Chargers moving back to San Diego.

Could the Chargers ‘follow the yellow brick road’ back to San Diego?

Unless Dorothy Gale clicks her ruby-slippered heels and utters the phrase, “There’s No Place Like Home,” (as seen in ‘The Wizard of Oz’) the Bolts appear to be staying put in Los Angeles. In a response to ESPN.com, NFL Spokesperson Brian McCarthy advised that there have been no discussions about moving the Chargers back to San Diego. He provided the following answer:

We are committed to and confident of the long-term success of the two teams in Los Angeles.”

Sports business consultant, Marc Ganis (who works closely with the NFL on relocation issues) also added this insight:

The NFL helped them to try and get the deal approved in San Diego; it didn’t happen. And as a result, I have not heard and do not envision anyone to try and force the Chargers to look at San Diego again. If the Chargers choose to on their own look at San Diego or someplace else, I’m sure the league, as it has done for other teams, would be supportive. But I have heard of no one that has or is considering trying to force the Chargers to re-look at San Diego.”

Based on that response, as well as the commitment of the Spanos family to the team’s relocation to Los Angeles, it looks like the Chargers will remain in the ‘Fight For L.A.’

Rivers Reflects on Former Teammate Darren Sproles

photo cred. (Zimbio)

Former San Diego Charger and current Philadelphia Eagles running back Darren Sproles was definitely looking forward to his Week 4 date against the Chargers. This would be a rare chance to go against the team that drafted him in the fourth round out of Kansas State in 2005.

Unfortunately, fate dealt a tough conclusion to those chances, for this year. Earlier this week, Sproles was placed on the Reserve/Injured list with a torn ACL and broken arm.

Sproles is a 13-year NFL veteran. Therefore, it is not a stretch of the imagination to say that his future in the league could be in doubt. However, what cannot be doubted is the impact he has had through his career. During his six years in San Diego, Sproles was both a fan favorite and great contributor on the field. He was also a member of the Chargers 50th Anniversary Team.

Earlier in the week, his friend and former teammate, quarterback Philip Rivers, was asked about his thoughts on the popular running back. His response speaks volumes not only about Sproles’ ability on the field, but also his character off of it.

Here is what Rivers had to say, in an abridged version of his statement:

“I was able to reach out to Darren and tell him sorry about the injury. It’s crazy; two tough injuries.

I don’t know if this will be it for him or not, but what a career he’s had. Three places he’s been (and) what he’s done. I think I saw where if he does decide to retire, he’s going to be eighth all-time in all purpose yards in the history of the NFL. I mean, that’s unreal.

I know this becomes cliché, but as good as he was (as a) player, he was even that good or better of a teammate. He was a guy where you won’t find anybody who says they don’t like Darren Sproles. Everybody loved him in the locker room. He was a quiet guy, but with a big personality.

Hopefully it’s not the end for him, but he’s one when you think back, if I had a long time to think back, I’d think of hundreds of guys who I played with that I appreciate. But if you said rattle off 10 guys as fast as you can, he’d be on the list for sure.”

Chargers Nation will always be grateful for Sproles contributions to the team. All wish him a speedy and complete recovery, and hope to see him back in action sometime soon.

The Chargers welcome The Philadelphia Eagles to StubHub Center, in Carson, CA for their Week 4 showdown on Sunday, October 1.

-Mike D’Abate is the Managing Editor for cover32.com/Chargers and covers the Los Angeles Chargers. He is also a National Content Writer for cover32.com and covers the NFL.
Follow @MG973024
Follow @cover32_LAC

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