San Diego Chargers: Ryan Mathews and 5 Players Who Must Step Up Immediately

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San Diego Chargers: Ryan Mathews and 5 Players Who Must Step Up Immediately
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The San Diego Chargers will look a lot different at the start of the 2012 season. With losses of staple players such as Mike Tolbert and Vincent Jackson to free agency, it is time for those who have been waiting in the wings to step up and prove themselves to the fans.

It is no secret the Chargers underperformed the past two seasons, two straight without a playoff appearance. However, much of that struggle can be summed up to a period of transition, where the Chargers are trying to find their new identity as the talent-laden sides of the previous decade have dissolved.

The new crop of youngsters such as Ryan Mathews, Jacob Hester, Corey Liuget and Larry English have to shed their greenhorn status and play like the kind of players that made them prospects for the future.

Here are reasons why these guys must step up right away.

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