San Diego Chargers Defensive Line: Who Will Stay and Who Will Go

cameronCorrespondent IAugust 20, 2010

PITTSBURGH - JANUARY 11:  Jacques Cesaire #74, Stephen Cooper #54 and Shaun Phillips #95 of the San Diego Chargers look on against the Pittsburgh Steelers during their AFC Divisional Playoff Game on January 11, 2009 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Steelers won 35-24.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

The undisputed toughest battle this training camp has been between the defensive line. There are 10 men to fill seven spots. What I will attempt to do is go through each player and give my opinion on who will or will not make the team. Let me know if you agree/disagree.

Lets get the locks out of the way:

Luis Castillo. Like him or not he is the most consistent member of the D-Line and although he has had his fair share of injuries, he isn't going anywhere. Chances of making the team: All but guaranteed

Cam Thomas. The Chargers aren't going to release a fifth round pick who has shown a ton of potential in just his first season, something major and/or unexpected would have to happen for him not to make the team. Chances of making the team: Almost 100%

Now I'll list the men who will most likely make the team:

Antonio Garay. Has a ton of potential but has had a lot of injuries in his career, has looked like a beast so far and will most likely be the opening day starter at DT. Chances of making the team: Only will be cut if he gets severely injured

Vaughn Martin. Still raw but the team believes he has all the tools and the work ethic to be special down the line. Chances of making the team: Will only get cut if the team loses faith in him

Players on the Bubble:

Jacques Cesaire. Scrappy player who is better as a role player than as a starter but can play all over the line and is currently listed as a starter, although I along with others think Boone would be better suited opposite Castillo. Chances of making the team: Likely, but I wouldn't be shocked if the team choose to move on with younger players.

Alfonso Boone. When he first joined the team he didn't look like anything special but as the season moved on he picked up the system and he showed why the Chargers picked him up. Led the D-Line in sacks last year and is an all around solid player. Chances of making the team: I would be surprised if he were to be cut, hes a good football player.

Travis Johnson. Was a solid player last year but has never really lived up to his potential as a first round pick. Chances of making the team: about 50-50

Ogemdi Nwagbuo. What a fun name to say. Nwagbuo isn't quite the space eater the Chargers covet but he plays with good pad level and has a nice pass rush for a DE/DT. Chances of making the team: about 50-50, it's either him or Johnson

Players with an uphill battle:

Ryon Bingham. Missed last year but is a tough and versatile player. He's a good guy but I just think the numbers are against him. Really hope he can catch on somewhere else. Chances of making the team: Unlikely, only if there are some major injuries in front of him.

Derrick Jones. Honestly I don't know that much about him, his best bet is to make the practice squad. Chances of making the team: Will make the practice Squad if he's lucky.

In the end I believe Bingham, Jones and Johnson will not make the team.


The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.