The Los Angeles Chargers continue to look for ways to give Philip Rivers more targets in the passing game, working to surround the veteran quarterback with playmakers.
On Tuesday, the team signed wide receiver Nelson Spruce after he worked out with the team, according to Ricky Henne of the team’s official website.
You may not familiar with Spruce and if you’re not, don’t feel bad. He’s yet to do anything of significance in the NFL, which is a bit of a surprise considering how productive he was as a college player.
Spruce is the No. 1 receiver in the history of the Colorado Buffaloes. He finished his career there with 294 catches for 3,347 yards and 23 touchdowns. When he left school, he had more receptions than any wide receiver in the history of the Pac-12 Conference, a mark that has since been passed by former Washington State receiver Gabe Marks.
Spruce is a deceptive player in terms of his quickness off the snap. At 6-1 and 210 pounds, he’s also shown the ability to go up and catch jump balls. But his success hasn’t translated to the professional level.
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Undrafted in 2016, Spruce signed with the Los Angeles Rams, a spot that seemed perfect for the native of California. Injuries kept him down there and he was released prior to the start of the 2017 season.
The Chicago Bears signed him to their practice squad last October and he caught on with the Kansas City Chiefs this past March. He failed to make an impression in either of those stops, and was released by the Chiefs just last week.
Now back in Los Angeles, has Spruce found a home or is he going to basically be a camp body? One thing is for sure, he’ll have to earn it with the Chargers. Beyond Keenan Allen, Tyrell Williams, Mike Williams and Travis Benjamin (who are all virtual locks to make the roster), he’ll have to compete with the likes of Geremy Davis and sixth-round pick Dylan Cantrell to make the team. Of course, the team has other receivers behind them too.
This may be the last chance Spruce gets in the NFL. He’ll need to conjure up some of the magic he displayed in Boulder, Colorado if he doesn’t want the dream to end.