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NFL San Diego Chargers

San Diego Chargers: 5 Players Facing Make-or-Break Seasons in 2013

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Players Facing Make-or-Break Seasons For San Diego

San Diego Chargers: 5 Players Facing Make-or-Break Seasons in 2013
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Every team in the NFL has players that could be on their last legs with their teams for one reason or another and the San Diego Chargers are no exception to this. Most of the players on this list are fairly big names in where their replacement won’t be easy as there might be some growing pains and the team might get worse before it gets better; however, that’s the nature of the beast in the league.

Having a new head coach in Mike McCoy, he will certainly make the changes he sees fit, as it is now his team to coach up, and hopefully for the fans sake, the team makes the playoffs for the first time in three seasons. That being said, a great deal of the team’s chances in making the playoffs will likely depend on most of the players that are on this list.

For some of these players that are on this list, either they just never panned out for the team, or have gotten complacent in their starting jobs due to the lack of competition behind them on the depth chart. In addition, one of the players might have this year as his last in the league due to his body breaking down and is in the twilight of his career.

Overall, it will be an interesting ride for the San Diego Chargers in 2013, especially now that they are without their second year player that looked like he could have become a breakout star, in Melvin Ingram, for the entire season after a serious knee injury.

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#5 Dwight Freeney - Outside Linebacker

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Dwight Freeney was just recently signed to the San Diego Chargers and he's still in make it or break it mode due to the fact he is 33 years old. Freeney was only brought in because of the lack of depth at outside linebacker the team has. This is a huge risk the team is taking on with him, as he has played 11 years in the NFL so far, and this will only be his second year at this position.

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#4 Larry English - Outside Linebacker

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Larry English was a first round selection in 2009, and has only started four games for the San Diego Chargers since signing his contract. Also in those four seasons, he only has amassed 8.5 sacks, which is beyond abysmal to be kind. English only makes this team this year because of an already season-ending ACL tear from fellow outside linebacker Melvin Ingram.

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#3 Robert Meachem - Wide Receiver

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After cashing in and signing a four year, $25.9 million contract last offseason, despite never having more than 45 catches and 722 yardsRobert Meachem was even worse and was an absolute bust for the team in 2012. Meachem played in 15 games for the chargers and had only 14 catches for 207 yards and two touchdown receptions. If he puts up a similar season in 2013, the team will likely count its loses and move on without him.

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#2 Ryan Mathews - Halfback

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Another first round pick for the San Diego Chargers, halfback Ryan Mathews, in three seasons, has yet to finish a full season since his junior year of high school. Mathews has had injury after injury, it is a true wonder in how he was drafted in the first round, let alone 12th overall back in 2010. If he gets one more injury, his football career might be over as no team would likely take a chance on him after the Chargers would likely part ways with him.

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#1 Philip Rivers - Quarterback

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

It is put up or shut up time for Philip Rivers since the team has changed head coaches and several front office personnel. Usually when that happens, the franchise has moved on and they begin the search for a new quarterback ideally via the NFL Draft. Last season, Rivers got sacked 49 times, and despite this, he thew the ball 527 times and for only 3,606 yards with 21 touchdowns. If he doesn't start acting like a top five draft pick again soon, he might be playing elsewhere sooner than later.