Tue, Jan 19, 2016

Bolts Notebook: Stats Watch

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QB Philip Rivers. Photo by Shana Siler, SDBoltReport.com.

With just one game remaining in the 2015 season, there are several Chargers players on the verge of significant statistical accomplishments. Here's a quick rundown of some players with milestones in sight.

--Philip Rivers trails Tom Brady by 72 yards in the race to be the league's passing leader. Given that the Patriots have already secured a first-round bye, it is likely Brady will sit for all or most of Sunday's season finale against the Dolphins. Even still, the honor will not be easily won by Rivers, who faces a Broncos pass defense that surrenders just 200 passing yards per game.

Also in the mix are Drew Brees and Carson Palmer, who trail Rivers by 17 and 22 yards, respectively. The Cardinals, like the Patriots, have already secured a first-round bye, hindering Palmer's chances. But Brees - whose Saints visit the Falcons - is certainly a threat to usurp his former teammate.

--Melvin Ingram needs just one more sack to reach double-digit sacks for the first time in his career. Should he accomplish that feat on Sunday, he will become the first Chargers defender with 10 or more sacks since Antwan Barnes in 2011.

If Ingram and Jeremiah Attaochu combine for two or more sacks, they will become the first pair of Chargers defenders to combine for more than 17 sacks in a season since Shawne Merriman and Shaun Phillips combined for 21 back in 2007.

--Jason Verrett leads the team with three interceptions. With one more pick on Sunday (assuming his injured hamstring allows him to go), he will finish with the most interceptions by any Chargers defender since Eric Weddle had seven back in 2011.

Weddle, by the way, has gone the entire season without an interception for the first time in his nine-year career. He will not get a chance to avoid that unwanted distinction on Sunday, as the Chargers have placed him on injured-reserve due to a groin injury suffered Thursday in Oakland. Not exactly what he wanted as he prepares to test the free agent market.

--If Verrett and Patrick Robinson both post three or more tackles, the Chargers will have eight players finish with 50-plus tackles. Jimmy Wilson (44 tackles) would have made the cut, as well, had he not played his way out of a job. Already above that mark are Weddle (77), Manti Te'o (74), Denzel Perryman (67), Ingram (62), Jahleel Addae (58) and Attaochu (53).

The Chargers technically could finish with nine players with 50-plus tackles if Donald Butler uncorks an eight-tackle game, but that is unlikely with him now stuck behind Perryman and Te'o in the rotation. The last time Butler had eight or more tackles in a game was Week 9 of the 2014 season in Miami.

--With five more receptions, Danny Woodhead will top his career-best mark of 76 (set two seasons ago during his first year with the Chargers). He is also just 5 all-purpose yards away from setting a new personal best in that department.

--The Chargers have a chance to have seven players finish with 500 or more receiving yards. It will just take solid outings by Stevie Johnson (3 yards), Dontrelle Inman (39 yards) and Ladarius Green (71 yards). Green is the only one who needs to do something exceptional to make the cut; he has not finished with 71 or more yards in a game since the Week 1 win against the Lions (74 yards).

Already comfortably above the 500 threshold are Keenan Allen (725), Woodhead (704), Antonio Gates (596) and Malcom Floyd (561).

Which statistical goal do you most hope to see accomplished? Discuss in our message boards!

Michael Lombardo has covered the San Diego Chargers since 2003. He spent 12 years covering the team for Scout.com and has also been published by the NFL Network, Fox Sports, Footballinsiders.com and MySpace Sports. You can see more of his updates by following him on twitter @NFLinsider_Mike.

Antonio Gates, Danny Woodhead, Denzel Perryman, Donald Butler, Dontrelle Inman, Jahleel Addae, Jeremiah Attaochu, Keenan Allen, Ladarius Green, Malcom Floyd, Manti Te'o, Melvin Ingram, Patrick Robinson, Philip Rivers, Stevie Johnson
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