December 11, 2011; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers tackle Jared Gaither (78) prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-US PRESSWIRE

Who Will Be The Chargers Starting Left Tackle Next Season?


Jake Roth-US PRESSWIRE

It doesn’t sound like Marcus McNeill will be back with the Chargers next season. Check out this little excerpt from the Acee mailbag:

McNeill wants to play. That will be up to the Chargers. I don’t think he’ll be back … I think Dielman and Hardwick will be back. – Kevin Acee

Well, at least Kris Dielman and Nick Hardwick should be back!

Who is going to be our starting left tackle then?

We already know that the Brandyn Dombrowski project did not work at left tackle from the opportunities he got last season. Dombo was beaten over and over again by pass rushers and Philip Rivers was running for his life.

Will we invest big money to keep Jared Gaither as the starter at left tackle? He was awesome for us last season, but can we keep the guy motivated? If you look at some of he notes from his previous employers, you will see things about him being a big lazy bum! He was even nicknamed the BIG LAZY. Does Norval have the ability to keep this guy ticking? If not Gaither, then do we have another answer?

We might have to use that first round draft pick on an offensive tackle. Mike Adams, Jonathan Martin and Riley Reiff could be possibilities with that first round selection. AJ usually doesn’t use his first round draft picks on offensive lineman though and we still have a lot of holes to fill on the defense with those draft picks.

It seems that we may have to depend on the Big Lazy next season. Hopefully he continues to perform at a high level for us and can keep Philip standing.

Tags: Jared Gaither Marcus McNeill

  • samson2279

    The Big Lazy really ? That’s just B.S. Who cares what he has done somewhere else ? He came here and worked his butt off and helped us get to 8-8 . Without Mr. Gaithers we were in Deep Sh*t. You should apologize to him . I want to publically thank Mr. Gaithers for coming here and making a difference.

    • Calum

      @samson2279 That’s hilarious, but also fair. I guess he should be judged on what he’s done for us, and that’s all good.

      • samson2279

        @Calum Acee who i usually like. Why does he have to talk crap ? There is enough guys that don’t do their job on this team or can’t do their job. Why talk shit about a guy who did kick ass.

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @samson2279 Gaither was a beast for us, not taking anything away from that… but if you just look at what he did for us then he should be one of the highest paid tackles in the league.

      There was a reason why he was cut and not the starter in KC. Reason why Baltimore didn’t bring him back. Let’s just hope he has learned and is ready to play like a star.

      • samson2279

        @epadaon I am just saying why does Acee have to call this guy The Big Lazy. That’s just chicken shit. He comes here and media has to act childish and call the guy names. It pisses me off

        • sjt2115

          @samson2279@epadaon Acee didn’t call him “The Big Lazy”, that’s the name which has followed him from the other 2 teams he was waived from (and all the others which looked at signing him but were put off by his attitude).

      • gtr_donald

        @epadaon @samson2279 It seems the problem is that dude is a left tackle and those other teams kept trying to play him at right tackle. Dude was an absolute beast last year for the Chargers. I hope they sign him long term. He was great and is only 25!

        • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

          @gtr_donald @samson2279 yea… michael oher came in and they pushed him over to right and it didnt work out after that in baltimore…

          he still could be lazy, but he could just be a natural at left tackle or is more motivated to play left tackle. i would definitely love to keep him long term and still pick up a backup tackle in the draft in the later rounds

  • A_Eme_O_Ere

    This is what Acee does! When he says MCNEIL ISN’T COMING BACK he actually means THE CHARGERS WANT HIM BACK BUT THEY WANT TO RE-STRUCTURE HIS CONTRACT. When he calls Gaither THE BIG LAZY he actually means THE CHARGERS WANT TO SIGN HIM BUT WANT TO OVERLOAD HIS CONTRACT WITH INCENTIVES INSTEAD OF PAYING A PREMIUM PRICE FOR HIM. Acee is simply doing his job of spin doctoring for the Chargers.

    The simple truth is Gaither almost got us to the playoffs. McNeill, while he’s had a stellar career with us, should not be signed if his neck problem has now become a chronic issue. Having said that, either move will be a crap shoot. We are not doctors and have no idea wether McNeil is done. Only Gaither knows if he has decided to take his career seriously and, even if he has, will he become the Even Bigger Lazy once given a large multi-year contract? I don’t envy AJ.

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @A_Eme_O_Ere Gaither is the reason why Norval and AJ still have a job… (or probably the fact that there was no better option available).. but Gaither didnt help matters any either.

      Big Mac with no neck, probably should start working out with Takeo…. then we got the big lazy who will get even more lazier…. dang it!!!

      you are an expert acee reader!!

      • A_Eme_O_Ere

        @epadaon What if McNeil was cleared to play and we sign Gaither to play RT and kick Jeromey “I always get a holding call, illegal motion or let the DE get a sack on Philip at the worst possible time” Clary and his fat contract to the curb? Yeah, right…not gonna happen.

        • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

          @A_Eme_O_Ere i wish that would happen!! but @gtr_donald makes a great point… dude has not done well with teams trying to put him at right tackle.

          dont forget about clary’s false starts

  • tank58

    that’s that bad part about drafting someone and the bust, this one I feel we can still get a decent left out the draft in the 2nd round

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @tank58 i think so too… get the pass rusher in the first and the left tackle in the second.

    • gtr_donald

      @tank58 Who’s the bust?

      • tank58

        @gtr_donald no one particular just if we go for someone or really Aj. picks one of his, their is a possibility they will be a bust

  • MikeTuck

    The Chargers need to keep Hardwick, Dielman, Vasquez and Green. Scrap the rest unless Gaither will sign for a reasonable salary unless he starts not giving it his all. If he would you could put Mcniel at Rt. Tackle and pick-up 3-4 through the draft and free agency to compete. One of those should be a backup Center to help Hardwich. Hardwick has been a warrior like Dielman. It’s to bad we loss Goff but we have to find some athletic O-linemen to keep Rivers pocket secure. Dielman still has alot to offer but a great pulling guard in the draft would help the run game alot. That and a Malamula type TE that can block like crazy. I think Rivers will have a great year, but lets focus on getting a line that can let Mathews look like the runningback we expected. He’s proven he is, he hasn’t got the touches he should yet and with a great line the offense will be unstoppable.

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @MikeTuck greene did a pretty good job filling in at guard for dielman when he was out. he will be the insurance policy if dielman decides to retire or has any setbacks…. we also have a young center in colin baxter that will be a good backup for hardwick

    • gtr_donald

      @MikeTuck McNeill is not a RT.

  • MikeTuck

    I’d like to offer one more thing and that is Gaither was great at the end of a season we saw our line injured alot. Looking for a few good men SD style in free agency would be the smartest move right now as this group can’t wait to train another Green. So be looking for them to go for a DE in the first round and maybe by the 3rd they’ll take a Olineman. I’d really like to see them look to the FSC or Div 2 for a couple animals that need taming. Alot of great players are down there strictly due to finaces and them not sure if a football career is what they wanted. After playing 4 years and having the fever they have something to prove. So alot of invited Olinemen to camp would payoff. I’m scared of a huge drop off in defense, hang on to Garay and make him feel wanted. I still say the crew they have plus a great DE like nick perry in a 4-3 would be the way to go until they can find the next Jamal Williams. Luigit and Perry on the DE and Barnes and phillips at OLB. Now there’s your pressure. Speed and power.

    • gtr_donald

      @MikeTuck Luiget would be a DT in a 4-3. Plus, you’re putting Phillips and Barnes as linebackers in a 4-3, when they would likely be situated as DE’s in the 4-3. And, Barnes did play DE in Philly’s 4-3.

      You’re mixing schemes and playing against the player’s strengths. The team is really built for the 3-4 and needs to stay with that scheme.

      • Bleu

        @gtr_donald @MikeTuck bRo I’m personally a fan of that 3-4 thats what I wish our defense was and that’s why I want Upshaw.

  • Bleu

    We have to retain Gaither he wasn’t much of a big lazy to me I think he handled his position exceptionally well last season for us and he
    can potentially get even better. He was
    definately a bright spot for us but bcuz of
    other needs I do believe that they can acqyire some OLinemen in FA. Im thinking DD and more D

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @Bleu so you are thinking D? :)

      • RussellGrant

        @epadaon @Bleu No, he’s thinking D! Weren’t you paying attention? :)

        • Bleu

          @RussellGrant @epadaon hell yeah I’m thinking d. Them oline issues ain’t a issue at all I think we over reacting. we need to focus on defense.

      • Bleu

        Looc homie I’m sayn in this upcoming draft we should really focus on defense I would not waste a high pick on a olineman bcuz it is possible that we remedy our OL issues with FA or what we already have or both. But it is absolutely imperitive that they get braun, brute strength, speed, and sheer talent on the defensive end of the ball . Go for the steak not the ketchup sandwich.

        • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

          @Bleu I think I got it… D!!!! And hold the ketchup!!!

          And I am frickin with you!!! Courtney Upshaw or Nick Perry in the first and then just take another linebacker in the second with Vinny Curry. Then Harrison Smith. Then get me that lineman or get me Ronnie Hillman.

  • Bleu

    Yea man we need defense that’s the key for us to me bro as long as we can retain certain components in our offense that are FA. Thats all im saying bro the CHARGERS always had D bro we need that back.

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @Bleu i hear ya! do you have a certain player you are hoping for in the first round of the draft?

  • Bleu

    I understand the fact that the dynamics of the 3-4 and 4-3 defense are totally different and I do agree that Nick Perry would be a great pick for SD no doubt but only a fool would pass Upshaw and thats real talk that man is a killer in football pads.

  • MikeTuck

    I liked Greens play and think he’ll be a keeper, I don’t remember to much about Baxter but it’s good they have someone now.

  • MikeTuck

    The BIG Lazy did a whole lot better than are starting RT that sat out for a extended deal. Then didn’t show up. I think he was spending some lazy time during his hold out.

    • gtr_donald

      @MikeTuck McNeill (and Gaither, for that matter) are both Left Tackles, not Right Tackles. And it’s not that McNeill didn’t show up, he got injured. It’s very debatable (read: I doubt it highly), that he could’ve avoided said injury.

  • Bleu

    Upshaw would immediately be a threat n any situation, I like the kid he is a killer. Green did a decent job I agree. We gone have a much better OLINE this season I got faith in the players we already have for the most part but it would hurt to make a few moves

  • Bleu

    McNiel is still a great player he should still be our starting LT no doubt the only issue with the guy is he got injured last season but when he is on the field he is still a probowl caliber player. Maybe Gaither can switch to RT or maybe we will have depth at the LT position. Bottom line we need that line to be solid and judging by PR17 passing yards every season and TD passes we may already have the pieces we just have to get everyone motivated and have a good camp with exceptional draft picks and we could be in route to retaking the AFC west and being in contention.

  • MikeTuck

    McNiel Hurt? Maybe but it happens everytime a guy sits out and doesn’t train hard. He slowed considerably, enough to make the Big Lazy look quick as lightning. A guy wanting to get paid doesn’t go about it like that, so he proved he’s not worth the cash. Yes they both play LT but Gaither won that position if they’ll sign him, and McNiel if he was invited back could handle the right side easier. Either way they’ve got to land a OT in the early draft.

  • MikeTuck

    Could be with some help Donnie but unless they get a hell-of- a DT they’re not going to excell very easy. They really hurt at stopping the run last year. Luigit can play DE, especially if they could get Mario Williams or Cliff Avril to play opposite him. Barnes and Phillips would be good at the OLB as Phillips was dropping back in pass coverage alot this year and was affective. Barnes is alot like Phillips, which is why I wanted Nick Perry to play with those to to keep them fresh. I stated that with the players they have right now they’d be better off with the 4-3. And the Chargers haven’t always been a 3-4 team. Wade Phillips got luckey when he got Williams, Oshansky and Castillo weren’t really DE but a highbrid of both. Spikes and Butler were the difference last year, leading in tackles they were the run stoppers. That’s bad, you don’t want your ILB’s having to make every play. I’d suggest getting Fletcher to give them a breather. Either way you have to have the right people to make the 3-4 effective, were not that team 7-8 deep at LB. The Chargers have also had some great 4-3 defenses, that is if they’d hang on to them insted of letting SF swipe them ( Dean, Gary Johnson, Plummer, etc.) I’d like to see either one if effective, but the personel dictates that.

  • MikeTuck

    Highly true about Upshaw, but 1. I’m bias and speed kills OT’s and USC brings speed to the NFL. Both sides of the line have to get quicker. If we stay in the 3-4 who you gonna put in the middle? We have alot of tweeners that can play DE/ DT somewhat on both. We do have the personel for the 4-3 right now. If Donald or anyone else have a solution as to that middle lets hear it and something to back it up. Even with Mario Williams the Middle is going to be a weakness. But you hang on to Garay and Vaughn Martin in the middle, then Luigit need to lose alittle wieght but as long as we have speed at the OLB the corners will be shut down.

  • Bleu

    DonaldButler is atheletic enough to play any LB role in, out wherever. If we get him under the rite coaching he has the potential to do whatever he is great in coverage u saw what he did to DustinKeller in that Jets game. He has great hands as far as stripping the ball and he is a textbook tackler so that helps against the run. The Chargers actually do have a few pieces that could be great for a long time if the coaching gets better

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @Bleu I love D.Booty!!! I think Jonas Mouton will play well in the middle also next season. Add in some draft picks and we should make some noise on defense

  • Bleu

    For real tho bro we need to take advantage of the situation and take some good picks. Now we on the same page bro. I’m serious bro I know we just need a top tier defense again and its going down

  • http://yahoo.com suggsy

    the reason gaither received the name, ” big lazy ” from baltimore was because as a restricted free agent he would not report to any of the ota,s or training camps without a contract. remember bmore thought enough of him to tender a 1st rd grade. in his yrs in bmore,he played against alot of quality dt’s and only allowed 4 to 6 sacks in 3 yrs. kc signed him while he was still injured and he did not fully recover until 7th or 8th gm of the season. we all know the story from there.i say to sd, to motivate gaither, just treat him fair. you think bmore did, ( making just little over million in 3 yrs and when he barked, moved him to the lower paying rt with no competition for the lt.)

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      that is some good info @suggsy

      is it alright that i still call him the big lazy though?! i don’t know why, but i like it! even if he is killing it!

      • http://yahoo.com suggsy

        @epadaon sure, i’m a big fan of gaither and have been folllowing him since his days at maryland, just looking foward to seeing him become the beast for whatever team that wants him.

        • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

          @suggsy you a bolts fan or just a Ravens fan stopping by checkin in on your boy?

        • http://yahoo.com suggsy

          @epadaon aways liked the chargers, but i must admit living in the washington dc area, could only follow casually. became excited for sd when he signed, and enjoyed that 5 gms run, specially the bmore game.

  • Bleu

    Yea man that big lazy is a ugly moniker for Gaither I like how suggsy cleared that up show Gaither some respect

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @Bleu but dang it i love knowing that a big lazy dude is killing it over on the left side of the line!!! it makes all kinds of other lazies proud! :)

  • Bleu

    How about Gator….. Bcuz he clamped down on those defensive ends like one………..

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @Bleu thats actually really good!!

      lazy gator?? hahahaha… not the same ring to it. i dont know why i cant let go of the nickname big lazy…if he re-signs, then i will stop calling him that (i think)

  • Bleu

    Lol….. U a fool bro……. Gator is a diamond n the ruff for us we just have to retain him. This Ol issue we have can easily be remedied its the d that scares me.

    • http://boltbeat.com/ epadaon

      @Bleu hahahahah… i feel ya.

      (let me test out the new name)

      Gator is a beast and he killed it for us last season!! Chomped up the competition?! we need to bring him back if Big Mac is out. Then put that focus on the D!

  • samson2279

    THE BIG LAZY ! Its just BS Acee. I had a lot of respect for you but Mr. Gaithers did a great job for us. Gaithers made a huge difference. He might of been labeled that with the teams he was with but not here. Be better then that Acee. I agree the defense needs a lot of help. Sign Garay he is always double teamed. ILBers need to make more plays. RBs destroy us. Also a #1 DB that can hang with a #1 receiver put jammer back to #2 there he is good enough. A Pro-bowl SS lol again we need help. This team has some big decisions and Spanos needs to re-open the wallet or we are in trouble, AFC west is getting better and we aren’t. That’s the bottom line.

  • Bleu

    I couldnt of diagnosed our issues in better words than that