It has been a long and crazy off-season, but with the draft right around the corner it almost feels like Christmas once again! It is nearly impossible to get inside the head of AJ Smith but after looking through all of the different interviews, mocks, videos, highlights, combine stats, collegiate stats, etc. This is what I have come up with. Here it is! ALL 7 ROUNDS.
“With the 18th overall pick in the 2011 NFL draft, the San Diego Chargers select……..”
Ryan Kerrigan – Defensive End. (Purdue)
Kerrigan adds the much needed fuel to the fire of the San Diego Chargers defense and could very likely fill that void in which the Bolts have had since the fallout of “Lights Out” Shawne Merriman. He possesses a relentless pass attack and does not stop driving until the whistle blows or he has the QB underneath him. Durability and character are not issues with this top-tier talent and he is very highly regarded for his leadership and pump-up skills he brings.
Round 2- 50th overall pick:
Brandon Harris – Defensive Back (Miami-FL)
This pick is not necessarily based off of team need priority, but more so off of talent value. Harris is a great talent and could jump right in with Cason and Jammer to be a nice complement. Although most of us do love Jammer, it would be nice to see some serious young talent coming in because we all know Jammer isn’t getting any younger. If he is still on the board with the 50th overall, the San Diego Chargers select Brandon Harris.
Round 2- 61st overall pick:
Jonathon Baldwin – Wide Receiver (Pitt)
If anybody knows the Chargers, they know that we love tall wideouts. Baldwin has great height at just over 6’4″. He has massive hands and a great vertical jump. When watching him play he almost plays along the lines of Vincent Jackson with a fight for the ball mentality. Did have a couple character issues in college but should be a safe production pick who can hopefully keep his nose clean in the NFL.
Round 3- 80th overall pick:
Casey Matthews – Inside Line Backer (Oregon)
Ahh, the beloved Matthews brother. Everybody watched and waited for the combine for the next big Matthews brother to come out and follow in his brothers footsteps, only to see him be injured during the bench press and not be able to perform for the rest of the combine. Casey has blazing speed for a linebacker and always winds up near the ball at the end of the play somehow. He is not the biggest and didn’t post the fastest 40 yard dash time, but his 10 yard split is fantastic and being a linebacker that is exactly the kind of speed you need. Matthews adds a huge talent to the ILB core for the Bolts and could instantly make an impact. Scouts have been skeptical but from what I’ve seen in his college years, I say he could be the next hot thing in the NFL!
Round 3- 89th overall pick:
Allen Bailey – Defensive End – (Miami-FL)
If he is available the Chargers could not pass up this beast. Bailey is very comfortable and has experience at D-end in a 4-3 scheme. He is one of the bigger prospects at the position as well as being faster than the average. He is powerful on the edge, has a knack for getting back to the QB, and is well known for his motivation and his effort through weight room training and practice drills. With Cesaire on the rocks right now, it would be very comforting to know that a tamed beast such as Bailey was on the roster and ready to release.
Round 6- 183rd overall pick:
Jordan Cameron – Tight End (USC)
Cameron did not have an insanely productive career in Southern Cal, but he did make his mark in some scouts eyes. Just like Antonio Gates, Cameron too was once a college basketball athlete who converted to tight end. And we all know how this story ends, basketball players just have the ability to get up for rebounds and snag balls out of mid air in which no linebacker will get to first. He is not a sure fire stud for the NFL by any means but he does possess the raw characteristics that could help him succeed. All in all, in the 6th round the Chargers would be lucky to add a guy with this kind of potential.
Round 6- 201st overall pick:
Bryant Browning – Offensive Guard (Ohio State)
Browning is one of those guys that shows up for practice every day and works hit butt off for every second of game time. He does not possess some of the natural talent and explosiveness that others coming into the draft possess. When coaches, teammates, and family are asked about him he is known to be a very passionate and hard working player. They way some scouts see it: “the guy just does not have the tools necessary to succeed at the NFL level”. The way I see it, give the guy who wants it more than anyone a shot, and let him keep up the momentum and competition coming into camp and see if we cant pull him together and utilize his skill-set.
Round 7- 234th overall pick:
Phillip Tanner- Running Back (Middle Tennessee)
Tanner had a visit and workout for the Bolts a few weeks back. He is an under the radar prospect with great talent and is a powerful runner. He could be that late-round diamond in a rough pick who could be used as an option or change of pace back in tandem with Ryan Mathews and Mike Tolbert.