Marion Butts: 1989, Round 7, pick No. 183, Florida State
Other players consider: Claude Gibson (1962), Pete Holohan (1981), Shane Olivea (2004)
Though he was drafted in the seventh round, Marion Butts became the Chargers’ starting running back early in his career. His 1,225 rushing yards in 1990 were third-best in the league and he missed two games that season due to injury.
The Chargers would hand the ball to the bruising Butts at will and his 39 carries in a game as a rookie in 1989 remains a Chargers record to this day.
One of the best running backs in the AFC in the early 1990s, Butts was selected to the Pro Bowl in both 1990 and 1991. He played five seasons for the Chargers, racking up 4,297 yards on the ground while scoring 31 touchdowns.
But what separates Butts from a solid tight end like Pete Holohan is the fact that he currently ranks third on the Chargers’ all-time rushing list behind only Paul Lowe and the legendary LaDanian Tomlinson.
Butts played one season with each the New England Patriots and Houston Oilers before retiring following the 1995 season, but his contributions to the Chargers were much more than most expected out of the team’s seventh-round pick in 1989.