For a team that seems stacked on the defensive side of the football already, the San Diego Chargers have made some strange waiver claims since Saturday’s roster cuts came and went in the NFL. Along with a low-key trade, the Bolts have been busy adding exclusively defensive talent to their squad after making some much needed high-profile cuts on the offensive side of the ball. What does this say about the new coaching staff and front office as the team marches toward a Week 1 showdown with the Houston Texans?
For starters, the Bolts aren’t going to find many quality receivers on the waiver wire currently to replenish a depth chart ravaged by injuries and misfortune. Robert Meachem’s release was a long time coming, and the team has more than enough weapons to succeed through the air without finding someone to take his place. After all, he was listed as the sixth receiver on the depth chart.
What their flurry of defensive additions says is that this new management team is trying to achieve what former general manager A.J. Smith stopped trying for in the final years of his stint in San Diego – depth. Teams can never be too deep as the rash of injuries at the receiver position has taught the Bolts already this year. Beefing up at positions of perceived strength will only aid the team’s cause in keeping fresh bodies on the field and not missing a beat should the unforeseen injury take place.
The first move was a low-key trade for defensive tackle Sean Lissemore from the Dallas Cowboys for a conditional 2015 seventh-round pick. Dallas had signed Lissemore to a three-year extension just last year, but their defensive transition from a 3-4 to a 4-3 left him without a natural fit. At 6-foot-3, 314-pounds the 25 year-old should fit in well with the standout defensive front that the Bolts already boast and help keep Corey Liuget, Kendall Reyes, and Cam Thomas fresh throughout the course of a game.
As for their waiver claims, the Chargers added defensive lineman Drake Nevis from the Indianapolis Colts and linebacker Terrell Manning from the Green Bay Packers. Special teams stud Reggie Walker also signed a contract coming over from the Arizona Cardinals. How all of these guys will fit into the picture has yet to be determined, but it’s quite possible these three could find a home on the practice squad in case injury or circumstance requires their services on the 53-man roster throughout the year.
Once considered one of the deepest teams in the league, it’s refreshing to see new GM Tom Telesco trying to restore that roster in San Diego. Defense may already be considered a strength for the Bolts, but these moves will only further enhance that claim as the team moves toward the start of the 2013 season.