I'd love to tell you there's a lot to watch for in the Chargers final preseason game.
If I did, though, I'd be lying. And I don't want to lie to you guys. I like you too much.
The truth is, the Chargers' roster is pretty much set. It's been pretty much set since Day One (no matter how much head coach Mike McCoy talks about competition throughout training camp). It's not a bad thing; rather, it's the effect of McCoy and general manager Tom Telesco tweaking it ever so slightly each of the three years they've been in San Diego, and now being at the point where they are one step closer to the type of team they envision.
This is a team that veers toward youth, toward players who exude a passion for the game, toward speed and toward physicality. And -- to the detriment of the organization -- toward injuries. (Perhaps this will be the year that trend ends.)
So, I won't insult you with a lot of meaningless "what to watch" scenarios; rather, I'll give you a few that might be significant:
**Kicker competition: As much as rookie kicker (and former MLS star) Josh Lambo has impressed this preseason, the feeling around Chargers Park is that veteran Nick Novak will remain with the team. It makes sense -- they're going with proven ability (Novak has been consistently clutch, making 34 of 37 attempts in 2013 and 22 of 26 last season). He's worked on kickoffs and has gained some hang time and distance in the offseason. Lambo should be a kicker for SOME team in the NFL -- and he might even turn out to be a great one -- but odds are, he won't be with the Chargers.
**Wide receiver: This is a position the Chargers are stacked at, and it's a tough position to crack. There might be room for at least one or two players to sneak in on the back end, though. It's not a stretch to say Dontrelle Inman will make the 53-man, but one player who's also a bit intriguing is Javontee Herndon. He spent all of last season on the practice squad and came into this camp lighter by about seven pounds (coaches wanted him to shed a little weight) and also more confident in the system. He's been impressive in camp and had a strong game against the Seahawks, returning two punts for 24 yards and executing a 42-yard reverse play. With his ability to play special teams and his speed and athleticism as a receiver, he could sneak on the 53-man. Maybe.
This week, Herndon said he will be "disappointed" if he ends up on the practice squad again. "I feel I've made enough plays this preseason to make the team," he said. He hopes to cement that with a strong showing vs. San Francisco.