The season has not gone the way the Los Angeles Chargers expected. Though they're coming off their worst loss of the season, there have been some positives.
Two Chargers are going to the Pro-Bowl in January. Receiver Keenan Allen and defensive end Joey Bosa were voted by the fans, players, and coaches to be deserving to go to Orlando.
“They’re two guys that couldn’t have been more deserving,” explained head coach Anthony Lynn. “They show up every day. They work hard. They show up every week. They play hard. They’re two of our better players. It’s nice that they were recognized by the fans, their peers and other coaches to go play in the Pro Bowl. That’s an honor.”
Allen has been a consistent offensive weapon catching 90 passes for 1,046 yards. For the third year in a row, Allen will be heading to the Pro-Bowl.
“It means a lot,” explained the Cal product. “A lot of hard work was put in and it has paid off. Staying consistent and playing all 16.
A few years ago, being healthy for all 16 games was tough for Allen. In 2015, he was on pace for a record-breaking season through eight games until he suffered a lacerated kidney. In 2016, during the first game of the season against the Kansas City Chiefs, he suffered a torn ACL and his season was over.
Allen vowed that both injuries made him a stronger mentality and helped him notice key areas of his game he needed to improve, like run blocking. For the past three seasons, Allen has amassed 1,000 receiving yards and will be playing in Orlando yet again.
“I think just his daily commitment to his craft and his position,” said quarterback Philip Rivers. “You see him blocking in the run game. He’s an all-around receiver. He doesn’t miss practice. He’s available every week. He’s a big-time pro and a Pro Bowler. It shows every day and, obviously, he’s getting some credit for it on the back end.”
Bosa is in his fourth year with the Chargers and has had another great season. The Ohio State product has 10.5 sacks on the year and has 16 tackles for loss. This is his third 10-plus sack season in four years. Last season, Bosa had a foot injury that sidelined him nine games, but in the seven he played in he recorded 5.5 sacks.
“He’s always been a talented player,” defensive coordinator Gus Bradley said. “But I think the combination of playing the run and playing the pass and the consistency that he’s playing at (have stood out).”
One of the areas that the Bolts coaches have been impressed with Bosa is his ability to help in the run game, which has helped him grow as a defensive end.
Bosa will be heading to the Pro-Bowl with his brother, Nick, who plays for the San Francisco 49ers. They both secured the highest vote totals for an AFC and NFC defensive end.
It seems like every week people are comparing their stats and their play.
The Chargers also have two alternates in defensive end Melvin Ingram, who is a first-team alternate, and fullback Derek Watt, who is a first-team special teams alternate and second-team fullback alternate. Watt has had a strong season tied in the NFL for special teams tackles with 15 and opening up holes for running back Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler.