The Pride event will be taking place at Venice Beach, Calif. and runs today and tomorrow. As part of their involvement, both teams will be sponsoring a letter in the Venice sign that will be illuminated at 9 p.m. (PT) tonight — with the Chargers sponsoring the letter “N” and the Rams the letter “C,” respectively.
As America continues their public battling and bickering over sports, politics and other trivialities, it’s nice to know that the Chargers and Rams still have their eyes on the ball.
The Los Angeles Chargers had a disappointing 2016 season winning only five games, but things are starting to look up after an impressive 2017 NFL draft, the hiring of a stout coaching staff and the return to health for several players.
Here are three reasons why the Chargers will bounce back in 2017 and win the AFC West.
No. 3, Philip Rivers finally has weapons
As mentioned above, Los Angeles had an impressive draft bringing in talent at positions of need.
For example, the offensive line was a revolving door resulting in Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers being sandwiched every Sunday.
In this year’s draft, Los Angeles brought in guards Dan Feeney and Forrest Lamp. One of them can play at right guard and the other can be moved over to center or just add depth to the line.
Chargers tackle Russell Okung is solid on the left side (73.1 PFF player grade) and guard Matt Slauson is an impressive left guard (81.2 PFF player grade).
Chargers right tackle Joe Barksdale had a rough 2016, but should be expected to bounce back to his old form, for he had PFF player grades of 81.6, 75.2, and 81.8 in the three seasons before 2016.
Without a doubt, the Chargers’ offensive line will be improved. If the rookies make a quick transition, it could even become a strength of the team.
In regards to the skill positions, Los Angeles will add rookie wide receiver Mike Williams and healthy wide receiver Keenan Allen to pair with breakthrough wide receiver Tyrell Williams.
Rivers now has three great targets at wide receiver, two great targets at tight end, Chargers tight ends Antonio Gates and Hunter Henry, and solid running back Melvin Gordon.
For the first time in a while, Los Angeles has all the weapons on the outside along with the needed protection on the inside to successfully utilize all of their future hall of fame quarterback’s skills and make this a top offense in the NFL.
Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Mike Williams is bringing a welcome championship pedigree to Los Angeles, something that has been in short supply for the Bolts to date.
The city’s favorite team has already been struggling in the Los Angeles Lakers, and the L.A. Rams’ Hollywood return was a decisive flop. As such, there are opportunities for the Chargers to snag a chunk of the new/casual fan market share in the city should they be able to do some winning.
Fortunately, Williams brings two ACC championship rings and one National Championship ring to the table as a rookie in 2017. A fact that the No. 7 overall pick is proud to demonstrate via his Twitter cover photo.
In an interview on the Chargers’ website after he was drafted, Williams discussed Clemson’s winning culture and how he fit in. “Guys like Jacoby Ford, Sammy Watkins, (DeAndre) Hopkins, Martavis Bryant (and) Charone Peake… set the standard.”
Like the aforementioned guys, Williams wants to pass “the torch to the younger guys” and set the same standard.
Having spent four years with the Tigers in college, Williams has absorbed a winning football culture his entire adult life. Simply put, all he knows is winning.
And for a team that could use a cultural turnaround and is starving for its first Super Bowl rings, Williams was absolutely the right pick in the first round for the Bolts.
Los Angeles Chargers safety Rayshawn Jenkins discussed how he felt about his rookie season thus far with the team’s official site Saturday, and made it clear that the playbook has been the most difficult part about the transition to the NFL.
After discussing what he likes about Chargers defensive coordinator Gus Bradley’s scheme, Jenkins went on to ease any apprehension about his aptitude in proclaiming that he was “intelligent,” and “shouldn’t have a problem with it,” per the team’s site.
The former Hurricane seems to be doing all the right things on and off of the field early on with Los Angeles, however, he does face stiff competition for playing time in a new look Bolts secondary.
As such, Jenkins’ ability to digest and implement Bradley’s plays will be put to the test early and often at Chargers Park this offseason.
Los Angeles Chargers tight end Hunter Henry might have been a second round pick in 2016, but he performed like a first round selection during his rookie campaign which led to Pro Football Focus’ Brett Whitefield ranking Henry as the top tight end in the NFL under the age of 25.
Despite seeing limited passing down snaps (254) as compared to his counterpart in Chargers tight end Antonio Gates (415), Henry still hauled in 478 receiving yards, eight touchdowns (one more than Gates) en route to posting an impressive 78.7 Pro Football Focus player grade.
The fact Henry accomplished what he did as a rookie is all-the-more impressive when considering how difficult it can be to transition from college to the NFL game as a tight end.
That’s a fact that Whitefield noted before going on to praise Henry for his “great positional flexibility, scoring five touchdowns while running routes out of the slot.”
Henry is quick enough in and out of his breaks that he is able to line up and win in the slot receiver position, while also being too big for smaller corners to hold him on the outside.
He is the type of tight end who will remain a matchup nightmare for opposing teams for many years to come. As such, expect for this to be the first of many honors to come for the second-year tight end.
The Los Angeles Chargers have signed their fourth round selection from the 2017 NFL draft in safety Rayshawn Jenkins, as well as signed free agent punter Toby Baker.
Baker had just completed a tryout with Los Angeles, and impressed the coaching staff enough to earn a contract with the team. Meanwhile, Jenkins is the second-to-last player signed from the 2017 NFL draft for the Bolts, with the only player remaining being Chargers rookie guard Dan Feeney.
Here is what L.A. had to say on their roster moves via a press release Wednesday.
The Los Angeles Chargers made several transactions on Wednesday, signing safety Rayshawn Jenkins, the team’s fourth-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, to a four-year contract, while also signing punter Toby Baker.
Jenkins becomes the sixth 2017 draft pick to sign with the team.
Baker, meanwhile, is a 6-3, 210-pound rookie from Arkansas who recently participated in the Chargers’ rookie mini-camp on a tryout basis.
Baker was the Razorbacks’ featured punter his final two seasons in Fayetteville. He appeared in 26 total games, punting 101 times for 4,340 yards (43.0 avg.) with a long of 60 and 27 punts that sailed beyond 50 yards. A three-time SEC Academic Honor Roll selection, Baker ranked 13th in the nation as a senior in 2016 with a 44.4 yard average.
The Chargers also announced Wednesday that the team has waived tackle Mason Zandi.
Chargers coach Anthony Lynn’s optimism about Hayward’s condition was a welcome report as he is not a player that Los Angeles can afford to lose. Last season, Hayward led the NFL in interceptions with seven, posted 57 tackle, 20 passes defensed and an incredible Pro Football Focus player grade of 88.9.
His counterparts, cornerbacks Jason Verrett and Trovon Reed, had poor PFF grades of 63.6 and 69.9 respectively and Verrett was only able to finish one quarter of the season on the field.
Verrett should bounce back this year and Chargers general manager Tom Telesco wisely added rookie defensive backs Desmond King and Rayshawn Jenkins to the mix, however, none of that diminishes how important Hayward is to this Bolts defense.
The Los Angeles Chargers just announced 28 new members of the organization that will be on the field at least 10 Sundays per year.
After a long tryout process, the Chargers have selected their 2017-18 Chargers Girls dance squad.
This was one of the most competitive years in tryouts, which means L.A. should expect an impressive squad.
In addition to dancing on game days, the girls will also serve as ambassadors for the Chargers when they travel abroad to international destinations. Fans can find the Chargers’ official press release on the news below.
The Los Angeles Charger Girls, one of America’s top professional dance and cheerleading teams, today unveiled the 28 members of its 2017-18 dance squad.
With hundreds of talented hopefuls originally auditioning on May 6 at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion, the 28 members of this year’s team were selected from a group of 65 finalists who completed a five-day audition process that culminated with panel interviews and a final dance routine on May 11 at The Novo at LA Live.
“The pool of talent auditioning for this year’s team was both deep and impressive,” said Charger Girls Director Lisa Simmons. “Los Angeles draws an incredible amount of talented dancers and performers with exceptional backgrounds and extensive experience working in this industry. We had to make some tough decisions in narrowing the field to the final 28. This level of competition has helped ensure that we’ll have one of our finest squads ever.”
Given the Charger Girls’ history of serving as ambassadors for the organization both nationally and abroad, with international trips that have included Australia, Germany, Mexico, Guam and Japan among other destinations, dancers from around the world showed up for preliminary auditions.
The 2017-18 Charger Girls are comprised of women who range in age from 19 to 36 from a variety of backgrounds, including one dancer from Taipei, Taiwan. With nine returning veterans and 19 first-time Charger Girls, the group features a real estate professional, an actor, an events manager and students from Cal State Long Beach, Azusa Pacific University and Cal State Fullerton.
To meet the entire 2017-18 team, visit: LA Charger Girls.