From now until the start of training camp, we’ll preview each position for the San Diego Chargers. We continue with a breakdown of the defensive line. The Bolts currently have 10 defensive linemen on their roster: Corey Liuget, Kendall Reyes, Sean Lissemore, Lawrence Guy, Kwame Geathers, Damik Scafe, Ryan Carrethers, Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe, Chas Alecxih and Tenny Palepoi .
Liuget – As quick as he is powerful, the 6-2, 300-pounder is a dynamic force in the trenches. He led the Bolts last season with 5.5 sacks, 10 tackles for loss, quarterback pressures and quarterback hits. Most importantly, the 24-year old enters his fourth NFL season looking to build on a terrific finish in 2013. Liuget thrived down the stretch, recording six of his team-leading 10 tackles for loss in the last six games. In the Chargers’ Wild Card Playoff win in Cincinnati, he led the defensive line with five tackles while also recording one sack, one tackle for loss, one pass defensed and one quarterback hit.
Reyes – Similar to Liuget, Reyes is another 24-year old athletic specimen with an ideal 6-4, 300-pound frame. He has an explosive first step off the snap and is equally deft rushing the passer as stuffing the run. Reyes took a big leap from his rookie season to his sophomore campaign, starting at 16 games to total 34 tackles, 5.0 sacks and two passes defensed. Like others, he turned it on down the stretch, coinciding with the Chargers winning streak that catapulted them into the playoffs.
Lissemore – General Manager Tom Telesco traded for the versatile 6-3, 303-pounder shortly before the start of the 2013 season, and Lissemore responded with a strong season despite only having a crash course in Defensive Coordinator John Pagano’s system. But despite being thrust into action, he still finished with 31 tackles, 5.0 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks and one interception in 15 games. Lissemore is grateful to not only have a full season with the Bolts in the bag, but also an entire offseason to fully acclimate himself for the 2014 campaign.
Guy – Some guys just have a knack for making plays, and in a limited reserve role in 2013, Guy made the most of his opportunities. The 6-4, 318-pounder excels at getting his hands in passing lanes, batting down four passes at the line of scrimmage, including one that led to a Lissemore pick-six. Guy also registered the team’s first blocked field goal in exactly 11 years.
Geathers – The mountainous 6-6, 335-pound nose tackle made the squad as an undrafted free agent a year ago. He returns having a full year of seasoning under his belt that saw him appear in seven games, registering four tackles.
Scafe – Scafe has shown glimpses of being a playmaker over the past few training camps and preseasons. He’s spent time on the Chargers practice squad and now aims to make the 53-man roster in 2014.
Carrethers – San Diego selected the nose tackle in the fifth round out of Arkansas St. The 6-1, 333-pound brick house finished his collegiate career with 196 tackles, 14.5 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks. He had an excellent season as his 93 tackles were the third most in the nation for any defensive lineman.
Tjong-A-Tjoe – A mainstay in the trenches at Boise State, the Amsterdam native looks to lock down a spot with the Bolts.
Alecxih – A star on “Hard Knocks” two years ago when he was in training camp with the Miami Dolphins, Alecxih was claimed off waivers in early June.
Palepoi – The Utah star was a second-team All-Pac-12 selection that all 13 games, finishing third on the team with 9.5 tackles for loss.