Los Angeles Chargers

Season W/L ATS O/U Pass Yds Rush Yds Pass% Run% 3rd D
2016-17 5-11 7-9 9-6-1 3,987 1,567 60.75% 39.25% 43%
2015-16 4-12 8-8 6-10 4,591 1,358 64.27% 35.73% 42%
2014-15 9-7 7-9 7-9 4,098 1,367 60.56% 39.45% 45%
2013-14 9-7 9-6-1 7-9 4,328 1,965 53.34% 46.66% 48%
2012-13 7-9 7-9 10-6 3,296 1,461 58.40% 41.60% 37%

Season Outlook

As long as QB Phillip Rivers is under center for the Chargers, his WRs will always benefit. In 2016, Rivers finished fifth in total passing yards (4,386), just 43 yards short of Aaron Rodgers' 4,428 passing yards. During the season prior, Rivers trailed only Drew Brees for the most passing yards in a season, racking up 4,792 yards. Though he is prone to throwing interceptions, the amount of yards he throws for each year is difficult to ignore. Rivers is an elite QB1 in fantasy. What's even more impressive about Rivers' past two seasons is the fact he's been without his top receiving option Keenan Allen, who tore his ACL during the first game of the season against the Kansas City Chiefs. Allen has failed to stay healthy the past two seasons, but when he's healthy, he's proven he can produce. His first two seasons, he totalled 1,829 yards on 148 receptions and 12 scores. Allen just turned 25 and if he stays healthy Allen will positively impact the league's eighth best passing offense. Allen can be safely drafted as a WR2 and an attractive WR1. There are high expectations placed on rookie receiver Mike Williams, as he is expected to work the left side of the field. Williams is a big red-zone threat with his 6'3" and 225lbs frame and is coming off an exceptional season with the Clemson Tigers in the NCAA, totalling 1,361 yards on 98 receptions and 11 touchdowns. He's currently on the PUP and his status should be monitored throughout the season. TE Antonio Gates has been on the decline for a couple years now, but proved he can still ball. Gates was targeted 92 times and racked up 548 receiving yards. He's worth drafting late, but he may fail to return TE1 or TE2 value. The Chargers have struggled to create a successful run game the past two seasons, ranking 31st and 26th respectively. Melvin Gordon's fantasy numbers were solid and he was named to the Pro Bowl last season with 254 touches, 997 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns. He's a stellar RB2 or FLEX option. Though the Chargers hired Anthony Lynn as the team's head coach, offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt is returning for another season and will continue to deploy the traditional yet deadly vertical offense.

Player Outlooks & Draft Analysis

Quarterbacks

Philip Rivers Sleepers

Few quarterbacks in the history of the NFL have been asked to do more with less over the past few seasons. Injuries, particularly at the receiver position and across the offensive line, have decimated this team of late. The emergence of Tyrell Williams last season, along with the addition of Hunter Henry in last year's draft and Mike Williams in the first round this spring, should give Rivers enough weapons to continue being productive from a fantasy standpoint. Keenan Allen also returns from another serious injury, but it's unknown what level he can get back to. Known throughout his career as a bit of gunslinger, Rivers led the league in interceptions again. But in his defense the Chargers defense, or lack thereof, required herculean efforts from him on nearly a weekly basis. Heading into his age 36 season the clock is ticking for the veteran quarterback, and despite rumblings that the Chargers were in the market for a quarterback in this past draft, nothing materialized. Rivers probably has at least a few more viable fantasy seasons left.

Cardale Jones

Jones is worth keeping an eye on, not because he has a chance to win the Bills quarterback job (he doesn't), but for where he might land when he's cut. With Tyrod Taylor the likely starter and T.J. Yates added for his experience with the new offense and coaching regime, Jones needs a huge camp just to hang around. Fifth round rookie Nathan Peterman is almost a lock for a roster spot and will get a chance to run the offense once the Bills move on from Taylor, which could conceivably happen at the end of the season.

Running Backs

Melvin Gordon Daily League Sleepers

After a disappointing rookie campaign, Gordon became a fantasy force last season. And the way he did it is perhaps the most encouraging aspect of his future fantasy prospects. San Diego struggled with injuries at both the skill positions and across the offensive line last season. And through the first seven weeks Gordon averaged less than 3.5 yards per carry and just over 90 total yards per game, with 3 receptions per contest mixed in. But he found the end zone 10 times and kept fantasy owners feeling good about plugging him in each week. From Week 8 until a sprained PCL ended his season early in Week 14, the Chargers gave Gordon a few more touches per game and he exploded. Over the five week span he averaged nearly 4.7 yards per carry and 155 total yards per game, catching at least four balls in every contest The problem? He only scored twice. But it's worth noting that in this impressive five game stretch, four of the five teams Gordon faced finished in the top half of Pro Football Outsiders DVOA metric on the season. Assuming he can continue to build upon 2016, the future is bright for Gordon and he should see 300+ touches behind an improving offensive line.

Wide Receivers

Keenan Allen

Lost to a torn ACL in Week 1, the 25 year old Allen has now suffered season-ending injuries in each of the past two years. And while all reports seem to indicate that Allen is completely recovered and playing with the same speed and explosiveness that has always made him a difficult matchup for defenses, he s certainly not a strong option for more risk averse owners. He gets a slight near term bump with 2017 first round pick, Mike Williams looking iffy for the season with a back injury, but there s still more competition for targets than Allen has previously had to contend with. Second year tight end Hunter Henry looks like the real deal and the Chargers patience with former UDFA Tyrell Williams paid off when he logged a 69-1059-7 stat line last year filling in for Allen. While the depth chart looks better for Los Angeles than it has in quite some time, Allen still has the highest ceiling so at this point it all comes down to staying on the field.

Tyrell Williams Breakout Candidate

One of the most overlooked 1,000 yard receiving seasons in recent memory, there's little reason to think Williams can't build upon his strong 2016 campaign. He's bolstered even further by the fact that first round pick Mike Williams seems certain to miss extended time as a rookie. And while Keenan Allen has made a strong return it's starting to look like he's destined for an injury-plagued NFL career. A big play threat anytime he gets the ball in his hands, Williams led the Chargers in receiving last season and should start the season opposite Allen in two wide sets. Just 25 years old, he's an exciting player that continues to go somewhat overlooked in both redraft and dynasty formats.

Mike K. Williams

Already missing time with a disk issue, it s possible the Chargers first round pick may not see the field as a rookie, and even then it will likely be on a limited basis. A big bodied receiver that wins at the catch point, Williams isn t a burner, but he s going to overpower most defensive backs, even at the NFL level. He doesn t create great separation so playing with a quarterback like Philip Rivers, who can throw him open or is willing to give him a chance to win footballs in coverage is a big plus. On the downside, he joins a crowded receiving corps with Keenan Allen returning from injury and Tyrell Williams emerging as a talented young receiver. And second year tight end Hunter Henry is also going to draw his share of the targets as well. Williams is unlikely to contribute in year one so he s a bit of a dice roll in leagues where he can be stashed.

Tight Ends

Hunter Henry Injury Update

Although Antonio Gates is still in the mix for targets, Hunter Henry enters his second season atop the tight end depth chart for the Chargers. As a rookie he wasted little time in displaying why this team made him a second round pick last offseason, catching 36 passes for 478 yards and 8 touchdowns while splitting time in the offense with Gates. Just 22 years old, Henry looks like he is ready to fill an every down tight end role already, and all signs point to him building upon his successful rookie season. Gates may siphon off some red zone and short yardage targets in the immediate future, but he's not a long term threat to Henry's fantasy value.

Antonio Gates Bust

The future Hall of Famer should break the all-time touchdown record for tight ends early in 2017, as he tied it in the final week of last season. This may be it for the 37 year old Gates, but we've also said that before. Hunter Henry is expected to assume the starter's role at tight end, but the former Kent State cager will continue to be involved on third downs and in the red zone.

Kickers

Nick Novak

The Texans managed to make the playoffs with a 9-7 record, a roster decimated by injuries and a scuffling pass game. Novak has underachieved since becoming a member of the Texans in 2015, as he has failed to convert on 11 field goal attempts and owns a horrific 45.4 percent when attempting kicks from beyond 50 yards. He obviously lacks leg strength, but is lights out from mid-range, perfect when attempting field goals 20-40 yards away. The longest field goal of his career is just 53 yards, yet he ended the 2016 campaign tied with Dan Bailey and Stephen Gostkowski in terms of fantasy points and will reap the rewards of the Texans inability to reach the end zone on a regular basis.

Defenses

LA Chargers Defense

The Chargers defense was stout against the run last season, allowing teams to just rush for an average of 97.9 yards while allowing a whopping 26.4 points per game. Though they weren't among the league's elite, the Chargers still tallied the 11th most points on defense in PPR standard leagues and intercepted the second most passes in the league with 21. Safety Casey Heyward led all Chargers defensive players in interceptions last year with seven and has filled in perfectly when Eric Weddle left the team in 2015 as a free agent. Jason Verrett, Dwight Lowery and Jahleel Addae round out a ball-hawking secondary that saw nine different defensive players record an interception. The Chargers also proved their worth in fantasy through fumble recoveries, as they were second among NFL teams with 14 recoveries on 20 forced fumbles. Defensive Rookie of the Year DE Joey Bosa is expected to take a big step forward in production and while the unit didn't lose any key contributors via free agency or trades, fantasy owners can be confident in starting them every week.

Player Updates

Injury Update Hunter Henry, TE - Chargers send Hunter Henry (kidney) to IR
19 Dec 2017 - 6:33pm

Chargers placed TE Hunter Henry (kidney) on injured reserve, ending his season. - From Rotoworld.

Player Update Dontrelle Inman, WR - Bears acquire WR Dontrelle Inman from Bolts
25 Oct 2017 - 4:40pm

Bears acquired WR Dontrelle Inman from the Chargers in exchange for a conditional 2018 seventh-round pick. - From Rotoworld.

Player Update Derek Carr, QB - Derek Carr cleared to start against Chargers
13 Oct 2017 - 6:15pm

Derek Carr will start Sunday against the Chargers. - From Rotoworld.

Player Update Mike K. Williams, WR - Mike Williams (back) on track for debut
13 Oct 2017 - 6:15pm

Mike Williams (back) is questionable for Week 6 against the Raiders. - From Rotoworld.

Player Update Mike K. Williams, WR - Mike Williams (back) expects to play Week 6
12 Oct 2017 - 11:29am

Chargers first-round WR Mike Williams (back) expects to make his NFL debut Week 6 against the Raiders. - From Rotoworld.

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