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A Look at the Chargers Initial 53-Man Roster for 2022


The Chargers initial 53-man roster has been set. 

There are 25 players on offense, 25 on defense and three specialists among the 53 players. All NFL teams had to get their rosters to 53 players by 1 p.m. (PT) on Tuesday. 

It is worth noting that more than 800 players are waived during roster reductions across the league, meaning this initial roster could change, but here's a position-by-position look at who made the initial 53.

Note: all players listed alphabetically by last name.


Quarterbacks (3)

On the Roster: Chase Daniel, Justin Herbert and Easton Stick

This trio returns for a second straight year, as the Chargers focused on the continuity surrounding Herbert. The third-year quarterback is already regarded as one of the game's best, and could be in line for another step forward in his second year in the same offensive system. But he has credited Daniel and Stick for his progression, a key reason why the team kept three quarterbacks on the roster. Daniel is 35 years old with five career starts, and has been a reliable backup throughout his career. Stick, meanwhile, is 26 years old but is a key piece to this group in meeting rooms and on the sideline.

Running backs (4)

On the Roster: Austin Ekeler, Joshua Kelley, Larry Rountree III and Isaiah Spiller

Ekeler is the lead back here, and one of the most versatile and productive running backs across the league. Just see his 20 combined touchdowns in 2021, which tied for the league lead. The backup running back spot was in the spotlight in camp, and Chargers coaches have said they may end up going with the hot hand behind Ekeler. Kelley stood out in the first and last preseason games, and could be in line for a bigger role in 2022. Rountree is a bigger-bodied back with a different skillset. Spiller was a 2022 fourth-round pick who has recently dealt with an ankle injury, but he could be utilized in the passing game at some point. All three players behind Ekeler will likely have a role on special teams, too.

Fullback (1)

On the Roster: Zander Horvath

Horvath, a 2022 seventh-round pick, beat out Gabe Nabers for this job in camp and the preseason. While he has shown flashes as a fullback, and could also carry the ball if needed, Horvath also established himself as a value player on special teams, too. 

Wide receivers (5)

On the Roster: Keenan Allen, DeAndre Carter, Jalen Guyton, Josh Palmer and Mike Williams

The Bolts are rolling with a deep and talented group here, headlined, of course, by Allen and Williams. Allen is a five-time Pro Bowler and Williams signed a multi-year extension this offseason. Both players have caught 14 touchdowns from Herbert over the past two seasons. Palmer has high upside and has made plenty of plays over the past few weeks. The 2021 third-round pick could see his production take off if the Chargers offense hums this season. Carter was mostly viewed as a kick returner when he was signed this offseason, but he stood out as a receiver and drew praise from teammates and coaches in camp for his ability be quickly grasp the offensive system. Guyton brings a speed element here, something he flashed in the final preseason game, and will likely be in the mix as a special teams player, too. 

Tight ends (3)

On the Roster: Gerald Everett, Tre' McKitty and Donald Parham

Everett is another new face on the roster, as he previously spent time with the Rams and Seahawks. He showed a strong rapport with Herbert in camp though, and will be counted upon to add some pizzazz on offense in terms of yards after the catch. Parham was among the early camp standouts as he used his 6-foot-8 frame to make plays down the field. McKitty had six catches for 45 yards as a rookie in 2021, and said he feels more comfortable in the offense heading into Year 2.

Offensive line (9)

On the Roster: Will Clapp, Matt Feiler, Brenden Jaimes, Zion Johnson, Corey Linsley, Storm Norton, Trey Pipkins III, Jamaree Salyer and Rashawn Slater

The Chargers boast one of the game's best three-man combos on the left side in Slater, Feiler and Linsley. Slater is a stellar left tackle who earned a Pro Bowl nod as a rookie, while Feiler is a savvy vet with plenty of experience. Linsley is perhaps the game's best center who has been praised for his ability to help Herbert continue to shine. Johnson, a recent first-round pick, will slot in as the starter at right guard. Pipkins and Norton battled for the starting right tackle spot in camp, but the Chargers have yet to announce a starter at that position. Clapp, Jaimes and Salyer each provide depth, respectively, across the offensive line. Salyer was a 2022 sixth-round pick who showed flashes since training camp began.


Defensive line (6)

On the Roster: Breiden Fehoko, Morgan Fox, Austin Johnson, Sebastian Joseph-Day, Otito Ogbonnia and Jerry Tillery

The Bolts revamped this position group in the offseason, bringing in established veterans such as Joseph-Day and Johnson to help fix their run defense. Fox, another new face, could add some pass-rush juice as he has a dozen career sacks in five seasons. Tillery did not play in the third preseason game and could be a starter on the line. He has 9.5 career sacks in three seasons. Ogbonnia was picked in the fifth round out of UCLA and should provide depth up front. Fehoko has played in 10 games over the past two seasons.

Outside linebackers (4)

On the Roster: Joey Bosa, Khalil Mack, Chris Rumph II and Kyle Van Noy

Bosa and Mack are the notable names of this group, and could form one of the league's top duos on the edge. Bosa, a four-time Pro Bowler, has been a defensive mainstay since being drafted third overall in 2016. Mack was acquired in an offseason trade with the Bears and had made it known he's a tad bit motivated to prove outside naysayers wrong. Van Noy is a wild card here, as he's listed as an outside linebacker on the roster, but primarily lined up inside in training camp. His versatility could be a boon to the Chargers as they look to get creative on defense. Rumph played in the first two preseason games and was among the defensive bright spots.

Inside linebackers (5)

On the Roster: Kenneth Murray, Jr., Nick Niemann, Amen Ogbongbemiga, Troy Reeder and Drue Tranquill

Tranquill is entering his fourth season and is among the vocal leaders on defense. Murray returned to practice last week after missing a bulk of camp, and it remains to be seen where he's at as the regular season looms. Reeder knows the defensive scheme inside and out, providing depth on defense and a leader on special teams. Niemann will also be relied upon for his special teams play, which flashed in 2021. Ogbongbemiga started two games at linebacker a year ago but will also be a vital special teams player for the Bolts.

Defensive backs (10)

On the Roster: Nasir Adderley, Bryce Callahan, Michael Davis, Alohi Gilman, J.C. Jackson, Derwin James, Jr., Deane Leonard, Asante Samuel, Jr., Ja'Sir Taylor and JT Woods

This group is broken down with six cornerbacks and four safeties, although some players offer position flexibility. James leads that group, as he can seemingly play anywhere on the field, and his leadership impact cannot be understated. Adderley is in line to start next to James, as he turned impressive spring practices into a consistent camp. Gilman provides key depth at safety, while Woods is a 2022 third-round pick who could help on special teams as a rookie.

At cornerback, Jackson holds the No. 1 spot there but recent underwent ankle surgery. Davis and Samuel could both be called upon to start early in the season if Jackson is unable to play. Callahan could man the slot, as the seventh-year corner has 45 career starts to his name. Taylor was a 2022 sixth-round pick who impressed teammates and coaches on both defense and special teams. Leonard was a recent seventh-round pick who played his way onto the roster by turning heads in multiple phases.


Specialists (3)

On the Roster: Josh Harris, Dustin Hopkins and JK Scott

The Chargers special teams operation is made up of three veterans who should bring stability to this phase, even though two of them are in their first year with the team. Harris was a Pro Bowler long snapper in 2021 with the Falcons, and was lauded for his leadership throughout camp. Hopkins made 18 of 20 field goals in 11 games with the Bolts in 2021, and has continued that success with a strong camp and preseason. Scott, who is in his first season with the team, has drawn solid reviews thus far for his leg strength and ball placement on punts.

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