A new season is upon us, and with it comes plenty of intriguing storylines. From massive traves and superstar uncertainty in the East to a West perhaps the deepest it has ever been, here is an early season NBA Power ranking.
Far-Fetched Friday: The Los Angeles Chargers Going to Super Bowl
The Los Angeles Chargers were a first-down away from making the playoffs last season. And this year, with an already-elite quarterback entering his third season, a revolutionary head coach entering his second year, and some key defensive additions, this team is headed to the Super Bowl.
Welcome back to Far-Fetched Friday, where every Friday we give you a bold prediction that we believe will come to fruition. This Friday we look at the best team in the NFL's best division.
What makes me so confident in the Chargers is that they went all-in this off-season to take advantage of Justin Herbert's rookie contract. With Justin Herbert, you have a player who should be making north-of-50 million dollars a year, still on his $6 million a year rookie deal. That's the new trend in the NFL; a young elite quarterback still on a rookie deal means you have the cap room to surround him with super-star talent and make a run at a Super Bowl.
For the Chargers, taking advantage of Herbert's contract looked like beefing up their weakness last season, their defense.
They signed J.C. Jackson, a 26-year-old cornerback who was an All-Pro last year with a Superbowl win on his resume. They traded for Kahlil Mack, a veteran former NFL Defensive Player of the Year and four-time All-Pro player, who will free up another DPOY candidate in Joey Bosa. Keep in mind, Derwin James is on this team, 25-years-old and healthy again, arguably the best safety in the league, proving it last year with his recognition as a First-Team All-Pro.
I was early on that Justin Herbert hype train, and I'm glad he's exceeding all expectations. But it's starting to come time that his elite play translates to more wins. He has the weapons in Keenan Allen and Mike Williams, both thousand-yard receivers, and a running back in Austin Ekeler, who is maybe the most underrated in the league. Then you have two all-pro offensive linemen in Rashawn Slater at Offensive tackle and Corey Linsley at Center. Put that all together, and I'd argue they don't have a single hole in their offense, evident by their ranking as the NFL's fourth-best offense at the end of last season.
All this before the draft too, where they could further beef up what is arguably already the best roster in the NFL.
Of course, there is one Elephant in the room. The AFC West is far and away the best division in football. The Raiders added Davante Adams to a playoff team, the Broncos placed Russell Wilson on a roster many people said was a Quarterback-away from a deep playoff run, and the Chiefs are still the Chiefs despite losing Tyreek Hill.
It'll be tough to get out of the division, let alone the AFC, but hey, we saw three teams from the NFC West make the playoffs last year, with two of them meeting in the conference championship. That same thing could happen here.
I have extra confidence in this prediction because I think the Chargers have the best roster in the NFL, thanks to Justin Herbert's rookie deal. And history shows when you have an elite quarterback on an elite roster, the sky is the limit.
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