Jason Verrett and Mike Williams are two of the Los Angeles Chargers’ last five first-round draft picks. Both players will be looking to make a statement in 2018.
While the jury is still out on 2018 first-round pick Derwin James, it seems that the other two first-round picks made in the last five years, Melvin Gordon and Joey Bosa, appear to be key contributors going forward,
So here, I’m going to further pick on two of the players I pick on the most.
Verrett hasn’t played much in the last two seasons, which I laid out in full detail here, Since he;s been busy rehabbing knee injuries in back-to-back seasons, the Chargers have assembled a solid stable of cornerbacks.
Casey Hayward has become a top five cornerback in the league, Trevor Williams stepped up when his number was called last season and the best is definitely yet to come for second-year star Desmond King.
Without a tremendous season, Verrett will almost certainly be looking for a new employer in 2019. Once taken with the No. 25 overall pick in the draft, Verrett has made it to a Pro Bowl and looked like one of the best young corners in all of football following the 2015 season.
What about Williams? He was taken with a pick inside the top 10 and though many Chargers fans have excuses lined up for him. Maybe its unfair to knock the guy for a poor rookie season, but if it happens again, look out.
Recently, I somewhat nonchalantly predicted that Artavis Scott, Williams’ former college teammate at Clemson, would have a better season this year. That might be a bit much, but I just disliked the selection of Williams that much.
He was injured off and on during most of his rookie season and finished with just 11 receptions. There were 34 rookies with more receptions than that. That may not strike you as an alarming statistic, but when you consider only six players in the entire draft were taken before Williams, it’s not all that great.
More from Bolt Beat
- LA Chargers: 3 early takeaways from 2021 minicamp thus far
- LA Chargers: Drue Tranquill takes a jab at Gus Bradley’s defense
- LA Chargers second-year players: Nothing to lose and a lot to gain
- LA Chargers: Why running back could be a big issue for the Bolts
- LA Chargers: Chris Rumph’s upside is Melvin Ingram-like, but better
Sure, Williams has the physical tools to be successful. He showed that at Clemson, becoming one of the best receivers in the nation. But he’s also shown an inability to suit up on a regular basis and his list of injuries ranges from a cervical neck fracture to a mild herniated disc in his back to a bone bruise on his knee to a tweaked hamstring.
Those are serious injuries and when you consider he’s only 23 years old, it’s a terrible track record.
So, back to the original question. Which one of these players has more to prove in 2018? Of course, they both have the talent to bounce back and become solid players for the franchise for years to come.
However, both have big hurdles to clear in order for that to happen.