The San Diego Chargers finished their 2011 season with an 8-8 record, which left them one win away from making the playoffs. Malcom Floyd led the NFL in yards per reception, led San Diego in receiving yards per game, was second on the team in receiving yards with 856, third on the Chargers with five touchdown receptions and third on the team in receptions per game. The only problem was that Floyd appeared in 12 games. San Diego was 8-4 in these games and went 0-4 without Floyd during the 2011 season. Floyd’s production in 2011 was not a fluke because he was second on the team in receiving yards, TD receptions and yards per game in 2010.
Shaun Phillips was tied for 10th in the NFL with 11 sacks during the 2010 season, but his production fell to 3.5 sacks in 12 games last season. Phillips averaged 0.7 sacks per game in 2010 and 0.3 in 2011, but he was tied for second on the team with two interceptions and was third on the team in sacks. The Chargers were 8-4 with Phillips and 0-4 without him as well. Phillips averaged nine sacks per season from 2005-2010 and only missed four games during those six seasons, so he may return to form in 2012.
Phillips is unlikely to miss games again, but Floyd did not play in three games during the 2008 season, missed five games in 2010 and four games last year. If Floyd and Phillips can stay healthy, I expect big seasons from them and possibly a big season for the Chargers. Phillips could return to form and Floyd might have his first great season.