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10 Insights: Derwin James Makes History In 2021 Return

10 inisghts photo DBs

Below are 10 quick-hitting insights from the Chargers' safeties and cornerbacks during the 2021 regular season:

1) Safety Derwin James Jr. was selected to the second Pro Bowl of his career, his first since his rookie year in 2018.

2) James became the sixth Chargers defender ever to make multiple Pro Bowls within the first four seasons of a career. He was again tabbed as an AFC starter at safety.

3) James is now the first defensive back and eighth player since 2000 to post 100 tackles after missing the entire previous season due to injury. James played in 15 games this season after appearing in five games in 2019 and 2020 combined.

4) James and fellow safety Nasir Adderley finished second and third in combined tackles respectively for the Chargers this season. James logged 118 combined tackles and Adderley with 99 tackles.

5) In the season opener, rookie CB Asante Samuel Jr., became the first Chargers rookie cornerback to start in his NFL debut since Sammy Davis did so in 2003 at Kansas City. Samuel picked off Dak Prescott in Week 2 for his first career interception. He became the first Chargers defensive back since Antoine Cason in 2008 to register his first interception within his first two career games. At 21 years, 351 days of age, Samuel was the youngest Charger to pick off a pass in the last 25 seasons.

6) Samuel Jr. became the second player since 1982 that wasn't a first-round draft choice with multiple picks before turning 22 years old. Samuel is the third Charger since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger to have multiple picks through the first three games of a career.

7) Samuel Jr. was named the Pepsi Zero Sugar Defensive Rookie of the Week after his Week 2 performance against the Dallas Cowboys. A few weeks later, he was named the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Month by the league office for September. Samuel Jr. joined Joey Bosa (October and December, 2016) and Paul Bradford (November, 1997) as the only Chargers to win Defensive Rookie of the Month.

8) James and Samuel Jr. finished the season with two interceptions each, tying linebacker Kyzir White for the most interceptions on the Bolts roster this season.

9) CB Michael Davis recovered two fumbles in Week 3 against Kansas City, the most in the first half by a Charger since Corey Liuget in 2014.

10) In Week 13, CB Tevaughn Campbell scooped up a fumble of Bengals RB Joe Mixon that was forced by DL Christian Covington. Campbell returned the fumble for a 61-yard touchdown, tying for the sixth longest fumble return by a single player in team history. The Bolts were the only AFC squad in 2021 to have multiple takeaways in the first quarter of two or more games.

*Stats and information courtesy of Pro Football Reference and Chargers Communications unless otherwise noted.

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