The last time we did this, we saw the Rams' top nine players in Super Bowl Era history. Let's stay at SoFi Stadium and hit the crosstown Chargers. The Chargers don't have the same long franchise history and the same level of success over the years that the Rams have had, but they always seem to field a consistently good team that never makes it over the hump. As I put together this team, I found that the strong suit for the Chargers is typically the offense. This makes sense, considering that coach Don Coryell developed his pioneering air attack in San Diego. It's almost team tradition now to have a high-octane offense now.
1. Dan Fouts, QB (2013 Prizm Decade Dominance)
2. Philip Rivers, QB (2013 Topps Strata Orange)
3. LaDainian Tomlinson, RB (2008 Donruss Classics Monday Night Heroes)
4. Lance Alworth, WR (1989 Swell Football Greats)
5. Charlie Joiner, WR (1987 Topps)
6. Antonio Gates, TE (2011 Panini Adrenalyn XL)
Antonio Gates is the one Charger with more career receiving yards than Alworth. Famously a former college basketball player, Gates was absolutely dominant throughout his career. His 955 receptions are most in team history, as are his 11,841 yards and 116 TD catches. His receptions and yards rank 3rd all-time among tight ends, and his TDs lead the way for his position group. He isn't yet eligible for Hall of Fame consideration, but he should be a surefire first ballot nominee. Plus, he played every game of his career for the Chargers.
7. Kellen Winslow, TE (1982 Topps)
8. Junior Seau, LB (1995 Collector's Choice Players Club)
9. Eric Weddle, S (2015 Prestige)
Some notes on this series:
- This includes Super Bowl Era players only.
- The "nine" in Franchise 9 is to fill a page in a binder. There is no intent to fill a roster or even a starting lineup.
- A player can represent multiple teams.
- I tried to find a balance between steady producers with longevity and explosive players with shorter careers. Time with the team does count for something, as does impact with the team.
- For a link to Franchise 9 lists that I have already posted, click here.
- This is all subjective, so I'd love to hear whom you would choose!