The Chargers don’t mind naming a suspended guy a captain. Or a short-timer.
Per Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune, the Chargers had some unconventional names among their ceremonial captains for the year.
As you’d expect, quarterback Philip Rivers is one of them. As you might not expect, tight end Antonio Gates is the other offensive captain.
It wouldn’t have been notable if not for Gates’ four-game PED suspension, which will force left tackle King Dunlap and wide receiver Malcom Floyd to split those duties until Week Five.
Their defensive captains, as you’d expect, include defensive lineman Corey Liuget, who they just rewarded with an extension this offseason. As you might not expect, they include safety Eric Weddle, who did not.
The Chargers aren’t going to extend Weddle’s contract, so he’s about to embark on what figures to be his final season there. It’s been a strange situation throughout, with him skipping all the voluntary offseason work. But when he turned up to camp, he said he was focused on making the most of the year.
Both Gates and Weddle have been respected, productive players for the Chargers over the years, so you can understand their being viewed as leaders, even if their current situations could compromise that in the eyes of management. But, it also speaks to the overall importance of naming captains as an institution.
Safety Darrell Stuckey is their special teams captain, and there’s nothing out of the ordinary about that. Thankfully.