“Way Too Early” Chargers Preview


Quentin Walker

With the University of New Haven football team losing twenty Seniors to graduation following the conclusion of the 2016 season, the Chargers are looking for guys to fill some big shoes on both sides of the ball. Losing guys like, Ajee Patterson, Andre Anderson, and Tyler Condit can be a huge blow to the team if these spots aren’t filled by the right person or handled the right way. Offensively, it’s really just a next man up situation; with players like, Junior Kellen Croce and Freshman Devon Balmer, who missed majority of this past season with a knee injury, hoping to fill the spot at quarterback.

The running back position will quickly become a fight between three Freshmen and a Sophomore, those Freshmen being Ryan McCarthy, JoJo Robinson, and Josiah Shumaker. The departure of Andre Anderson and Lemar Thomas leaves Chris Liggio to be the top dog in the backfield. Prior to the 2016 season, in which both Liggio and Croce saw very limited game action, Liggio didn’t see the field at all and Croce, on the other hand, saw one game in his first year as a Charger. However, an offense isn’t complete without an offensive line to protect their quarterback and a good set of receivers for that quarterback to throw to, and whoever starts at quarterback, whether it be Croce or Balmer, won’t have much to worry about, given the slew of offensive linemen that can replace the graduating seniors that include, Zach Voytek and Stephen Rossi among others. As for the receiving core, Juniors Khaneil Bruce and Devin Martin will be playing a bigger role for sure, along with some help from a few different guys.

Now, on the defensive side of the ball, not much changes. The star of the defense, linebacker Tyler Condit may be gone, along with the whole starting rotation of defensive linemen, but with the depth of the defense, the Chargers will have no problem filling holes left by the seniors. In the defensive backfield, Mark Clements, Stefano Bicknese, and Matt Olivo will step up and play bigger roles as the leaders of the defense. These can been seen as way too early predictions of what the Chargers will look like on the field, but there are some things that can and should be taken into some real consideration.

Believe it or not, the New Haven Chargers will be a completely different team next season. It may be for the better or the worse – hopefully the better—but at the end of the day the Chargers will be different.