<strong>July 25, 2005</strong>
Source: <a href="http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/trainingcamp05/news/story?id=2115803&num=6">ESPN</a>
<strong>San Diego Chargers</strong>
<strong>Key veteran addition:</strong> S Bhawoh Jue.
<strong>Key veteran departures:</strong> WR-RS Tim Dwight; DT Jason Fisk; QB Doug Flutie; LB Zeke Moreno.
<strong>Most significant change: </strong>Having come out of nowhere to win the AFC West last year, the Chargers enter their 2005 training camp with a target on their backs for the first time in ages, and it will be interesting to see how they handle the added pressure of living up to high expectations.
<strong>Reasons for optimism:</strong> QB Drew Brees' stock soared with a career year, and his confidence came along for the ride. Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips made his impact felt immediately with a 3-4 scheme that turned San Diego into a staunch unit, one that should be better in terms of getting after the passer this fall.
<strong>Causes for concern:</strong> Brees must show he can get it done for more than just one season. First-round pick Shawne Merriman, represented by the infamous Poston brothers, likely will hold out, preventing him from getting up to speed with his teammates and the system. The Chargers have a much more difficult schedule facing them and lack proven depth at wide receiver.
<strong>Battle to watch:</strong> Free safety and possibly Ben Leber's OLB spot, whenever Merriman reports, could be interesting, but the WR spot alongside Keenan McCardell is of more importance. Expect Eric Parker and Reche Caldwell to vie for the opportunity, but keep an eye on rookie Vincent Jackson down the road.
<strong>Don't be surprised if ... </strong>Merriman misses a good portion of camp in an ugly contract stalemate with the front office.