Spotlight on Chargers WR/KR Eddie Royal

Posted Tuesday, Sep. 24, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Height: 5-10 Weight: 185

Season: 6th College: Virginia Tech

Strengths: Royal is a polished receiver and has become a valuable weapon for the Chargers in the slot. He has good hands, runs good routes and his speed and quickness allow him to create separation. He ran a 4.39 at the scouting combine in 2008. Royal plays with fearlessness. He has averaged 10.8 yards in his career as a punt returner, with two touchdowns.

Weaknesses: Royal is small, and he has shown an inability to stay healthy. He had groin and hamstring injuries last season after signing a three-year, $13.5 million deal. Royal played in 10 games last season, with 23 catches for 234 yards and a touchdown. During this year’s training camp, he had a concussion and a bruised lung. Only one season has he played all 16 games. He lacks explosiveness, with no catches longer than 41 yards since a 93-yard touchdown reception as a rookie. He will drop passes, and he had a key drop in the fourth quarter against the Houston Texans in Week 1 that would have converted a third down.

Last week: He had two catches for 34 yards and was held scoreless for the first time this season in a 20-17 loss to Tennessee.

Who has to stop him? Morris Claiborne has played through a dislocated shoulder, wearing a harness for protection. He played 53 of 69 plays last week. Orlando Scandrick has shown he is more than a nickel corner, filling in for Claiborne at right corner at times. Scandrick is the only player to be on the field for every defensive snap against the St. Louis Rams. Brandon Carr has been solid at left corner.

Notable: Royal’s five touchdowns lead the NFL and tie his career high, which he had his rookie season in Denver. He had a touchdown negated by an offensive pass interference penalty on Keenan Allen last week. … Royal has 12 catches for 148 yards this season. … He has only 15 career touchdown receptions. … Royal has 5,153 all-purpose yards in his career as a receiver, rusher, punt returner and kick returner. He has 2,489 yards receiving. ... He was a second-round draft pick of the Broncos, the 42nd overall choice.

— Charean Williams

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