Danario Alexander was listed as the number two starter at wide receiver for the San Diego Chargers before he tore his ACL yesterday, a day before his 25th birthday.
Alexander’s injury could be damaging to San Diego’s offense because he led the Chargers in receiving yards per game and was tied for the team lead in touchdown receptions last year. Alexander’s 18 yards per reception ranked third in the NFL and his 66 receiving yards per game ranked 22nd in the league.
San Diego ranked 22nd in receiving yards and 30th in yards per reception to go along with a rushing attack that ranked 27th in yards and 31st in yards per rushing attempt.
Alexander’s torn ACL opens up the door for Vincent Brown, Eddie Royal, Robert Meachem or Keenan Allen. Brown missed the entire 2012 season after breaking his ankle against the Dallas Cowboys in a preseason game, but he is listed as the primary backup to number one WR Malcom Floyd.
Royal was listed as Alexander’s primary backup before the ACL tear. Royal was brought in to be San Diego’s punt returner and occasionally see time at WR. Royal’s best season as a receiver was in 2008 when he had 91 receptions, 980 receiving yards and five TD receptions. This was an impressive rookie season, but he did not have 60 receptions in a season since then and combined for five TD receptions from 2009-2012.
Meachem had knee surgery after his last season with the New Orleans Saints in 2011. He had a terrible season last year when he had 14 receptions, 207 receiving yards and two TD receptions. The latter two categories were career lows for Meachem in his five seasons. Meachem is listed as the backup to Brown on the depth chart.
Allen was chosen in round three of this year’s NFL Draft. Allen tore his PCL in October of 2012 which caused his draft stock to drop from a potential mid to late first-round pick. Allen is listed as the backup to Royal on San Diego’s depth chart.
San Diego’s coaching staff seems to be the highest on Brown out of the potential candidates to replace Alexander. Brown missed the entire 2012 season and seven of San Diego’s 10 practices this year, but is still listed as the primary backup to the number one WR Floyd.
Alexander’s injury could open up a competition for the number two WR spot before the regular season begins at home next month against the Houston Texans.