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Mailbag: Cardale Jones, Melvin Gordon, Captains and More

Q: Melvin Gordon is crushing it. That stiff arm in New York will be remembered for years. What’s his trademark run? – Stanley Charvinsky

A: Number 28 is certainly on a run. And you’re right, that stiff arm will be gif’d for a long time! I think your notion of a signature run is quite interesting. The great running backs all have that one run people talk about for generations. The first one I think of is LaDainian Tomlinson’s record-breaking touchdown in 2006. Marshawn Lynch’s famous “Beast Quake” in the playoffs also comes to mind. As far as Melvin goes, I think it’s way too early to anoint him as having his signature run already. After all, he’s only in his third year. However, after getting your question in the mailbag I asked Gordon what his favorite NFL run has been thus far, and he was quick to answer last year’s 47-yard rumble to close out the win against the Tennessee Titans. It’s hard to argue with that one, as he broke several tackles on 3rd-and-7 well shy of the sticks, powering through Titans defenders before showing off his speed in the open field.

Q:  Do you think Mike Williams will have a prominent role in the offense very soon? – Eddie Bang

A: I would argue that he already does.  Yes, the rookie only played 11 snaps, but that’s to be expected in his first real action.  But the fact the team trusted him on the field on third and fourth down plays shows they already have faith in him in high leverage situations.  What’s more prominent than that?  Philip Rivers also looked his way on a key 3rd-and-6 play, and Williams came through with the 15-yard gain.  Head Coach Anthony Lynn said he expects the rookie’s snaps to increase each week, but as far as holding a prominent role in the offense, I think he already has one.

Q:  Why do some of our captains have gold stars and others don’t?  – Mark B.

A: You have some eagle eyes, Mark, as not many notice that!  There are four stars underneath the “C” on the patch, and per NFL policy, a player receives a gold star for each year he’s been a captain.  That’s why you’ll see Melvin Ingram has two gold stars as he’s in his second year as a captain, while Matt Slauson has one as it’s his first.  Once a player has been a captain for at least five years, the “C” itself is gold as well, which you can see on Philip Rivers. 

Q:  Is there any chance that we could see Cardale Jones in a wildcat formation? – Edward Bradley

A: There’s always a chance for anything, but since Jones has been inactive each week so far, I wouldn’t hold my breath.

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