The Los Angeles Chargers may not have to scour the quarterback market long — if at all — in an effort to replace former franchise QB Philip Rivers.
According to coach Anthony Lynn, there’s a good chance L.A. could look to patch the gaping hole at the position with a home remedy; one that Lynn is already quite familiar with from his two-year stint in Buffalo.
“Tyrod Taylor is a heck of a quarterback,” Lynn said on the “Petros and Money” show on AM 570 LA Sports, via ESPN. “We couldn’t have a better backup right now, and now he has an opportunity to maybe step up into a starting role. I’ve had Tyrod before [in Buffalo], and I know what this young man brings to the table, in the passing game and the running game.”
Taylor inked a two-year, $11 million deal with the Chargers in March. He appeared in three games and threw for 33 yards and a touchdown in 2019.
Prior to Lynn taking the Chargers job in 2017, he served in four roles, including interim head coach and offensive coordinator in his second year, with the Bills from 2015-16, which were the first two seasons of Taylor’s three with the club.
In 29 starts, Taylor accumulated 6,058 passing yards, 37 TDs and 12 INTs, as well as 1,148 rush yards and 10 rushing scores in those campaigns. He posted 2,799 yards, 18 total TDs and four picks in 14 starts while leading Buffalo to the postseason in 2017.
Buffalo also led the NFL in rushing yards, and ranked 10th in scoring and 16th in total offense when Lynn was OC in ’16. They finished in the top-15 in both categories the year prior.
When asked about the type of QB he prefers, Lynn listed the qualities he sees from successful signal-callers around the league, traits that have become more and more common in the NFL since Taylor was drafted in 2011 and have been attributed to Taylor more than once in his career.
“There are some guys that can win from the pocket, but when you look around the league, most of these guys are mobile quarterbacks that can move,” Lynn said. “All you have to do is watch high school football on Friday nights. High school football told me 10 years ago the direction the NFL was headed.
“So that’s just the world that we’re in right now — you can do more things and be more cutting edge [with a mobile quarterback]. But that guy that can stand back there, pick up all those protections, throw the ball from the pocket and use the quick passing game [instead of] his legs, you can still win with a classic pocket passer.”
At 30 years old with nine years of experience and one playoff game under his waistband, Taylor has spent time as both a leading man and a supporting piece. If L.A. goes with him and he’s able to protect the ball (17 fumbles in 46 career starts) and recapture even a trace of the energy he had in Buffalo, the Bolts could be in for a bounceback season.
“One of the things he does very well is take care of the football. I believe every year he’s started in this league, he’s been the No. 1 quarterback in taking care of the football,” Lynn said of Taylor. “I believe more games are lost than won. So if we can just take care of the football and take it away, we’ll be OK.”