Welcome to the Bolt Beat Monday Mailbag!
Good to finally have the draft over, and boy was it a good one. Many of you sent in questions about the draft, and I consolidated your submissions into one question (see below). I am so glad to be past the draft and not answering questions about defensive tackle or linebacker in the first round anymore!
How can you send yours in? It’s simple!
- On Twitter @tjscooter30
- Through email at firstname.lastname@example.org
- In the comments section of this article or on our Facebook page
Let’s get right into it!
Question 1: What are your thoughts on the draft? Any surprises, any picks you liked or didn’t? I thought we did pretty good. – Dan
Your 2018 NFL Draft Class for the Los Angeles Chargers:
— Los Angeles Chargers (@Chargers) April 29, 2018
Thoughts on the overall draft:
Great selection of players with a specific (or rather, non-specific) purpose. The key here seemed to be versatility, especially with the defensive selections. Derwin James can cover, tackle and rush the quarterback. Uchenna Nwosu will set the edge at SAM, can rush the passer and, according to Gus Bradley, will be asked to drop into coverage as well. Kyzir White will transition from safety to linebacker (WILL), something Tom Telesco said was common in his years with the Indianapolis Colts when they would draft safeties for their Tampa 2 defense.
Value was (mostly) an important part of the selections as well. James was a top-10 talent, White had a second-round grade and even RB Justin Jackson was great value at the 251st pick.
By the way, I’ve never seen so many people come out of nowhere and support a seventh-round selection like I’ve seen from Jackson’s fans. A lot of fans/pundits on Twitter (alright, not the greatest source) really support this kid and his production. He looks good to make the roster.
I would have loved a different DT than Justin Jones, but I’m still glad Telesco addressed the position. Scott Quessenberry out of UCLA will likely solve any depth issues behind the two guard positions. I see six out of seven picks making the final roster (sorry Dylan Cantrell).
I mean, come on: It’s Derwin James. It’s one of three players I wanted that I never thought we would get without trading up. Telesco lands a player who has been compared to Kam Chancellor and Sean Taylor by doing nothing, simply because other teams (*cough Raiders*) made questionable picks that let him fall to us.
Least favorite pick
I feel bad because the guy has yet to take a snap, but Dylan Cantrell is at best going to be a practice squad player this year. I would have liked any DT depth over another WR.
This team is ready to kick the snot out of the AFC West. Patrick Mahomes is going to have one hard time dealing with every player on the defense coming to take his soul. The Raiders don’t have a secondary. The Broncos forgot that Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram exist and didn’t get any tackle help for a porous line in front of Case Keenum.
Let’s go get that AFC West title baby…
Question 2: My Question Tyler, ma’ Man… is, why do people call the Chargers the Los Angeles Chargers in reference to the Past, like they have always been the Los Angeles Chargers? When people say the Los Angeles Chargers have done this or that for the past few years, this is like they are kind of defecating on the San Diego Charger fans and the city of San Diego. I say this with all due respect to the writers of the articles. Maybe I shouldn’t be posting on Chargers blogs anymore, I just can’t ignore the team I grew up with. – Carlosinator
I’ll address it honestly: I haven’t seen anyone do this. Then again, I don’t read all of my colleagues’ articles, and I would possibly gloss over a name like that without thinking twice if I did.
Like I said in the last mailbag, I was not completely as connected to the San Diego Chargers as those of you who live in or around the city. So for me, I’ve never recognized it as a problem (frankly, I haven’t seen much of it) if someone refers to them as the Los Angeles Chargers when talking about the past. But for you, that has to be tough. If I were married, then divorced, and she re-married I would cringe at the thought of calling her by the last name of a different man. What’s worse, the San Diego Chargers moving to Los Angeles is the equivalent of my theoretical wife getting married to some ugly dude who bullied me in school.
It’s for that reason that I try to refer to them by the identity that I can call them for the rest of my life: The Chargers. The Bolts. As for yourself, call out those writers or bloggers who refer to the Los Angeles Chargers as if they’ve always had the same name. We’ve all had to adapt to calling them a different name, if someone is too lazy to make that switch then let them know. It’s personal to guys like you and Eliyah, and thousands more. Take it to their comment sections!
I wish for nothing more than the Chargers to be back in San Diego. Both for you fans and for myself. Those two hour drives from Orange County to San Diego and back brought my dad and I so close together. Parking at Hazard Center Drive for free, sitting at P20 Row 17 Seats 3 and 4. Racing across the parking lot after games juking out fans to hop the fence by the Best Buy (or IKEA?) to skip the train line at Qualcomm. Nothing better than those years.
Question 3: Here’s a mailbag question: Out of all the UDFA Chargers signed who do you think is gonna make it? I believe Tony Brown and Steven Richardson will make the team. – Pistolsel
Here’s a few that have a shot:
- Tony Brown, CB, Alabama
- Nic Shimonek, QB, Texas Tech
Tony Brown was slated to be an early Day 3 draft selection, but went undrafted possibly due to off-field issues, including at one point being suspended indefinitely for reportedly failing drug tests. Why does he make the team? Dude runs a 4.35 second 40-yard dash. That’s faster than Travis Benjamin at almost 30 pounds heavier. He could make the team covering kicks on special teams, and the Chargers should give him a shot at returning kicks.
Nic Shimonek is a guy I never paid much attention to prior to 24 hours ago, but people seem to really be on board with this guy:
One guy I find interesting as a developmental third-day prospect is Texas Tech QB Nic Shimonek. Watched tape with him a few weeks back. https://t.co/1cL0rMTDv5
— Doug Farrar (@BR_DougFarrar) April 28, 2018
One of the stories I remember hearing about this guy is his willingness to go down and throw to the running backs as an “extra arm” at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Why do I think he’s got a good shot to make the roster? His competition is Geno Smith…
— Brotato Chip (@iWILL_88) November 2, 2015
If Shimonek can work hard and keep up the chemistry with Chargers’ sixth-round draft pick Dylan Cantrell (also from Texas Tech), maybe he’s got a shot to make the roster or practice squad.
Two other positions possibly up for new blood are running back and defensive tackle. Both positions were addressed in this year’s draft (Jackson and Jones, respectively), but the team could find a spot for an unexpected undrafted free agent.
Fun fact: the Chargers have had an UDFA make the team 21 straight years. I bet we get to 22.
I am sad to report that none of you picked Justin Jones in last week’s mailbag to be the Bolts’ third-round selection, but a shout out goes to all of you that participated! Here’s a question for you guys:
What’s your draft grade for the Chargers 2018 class? If you didn’t like their draft, who is a player in free agency that could be signed that would fill a missing piece?
Have a great week you guys! Go Bolts!