LA Chargers News

What the LA Chargers Spring League additions mean for team

CHESTNUT HILL, MA - SEPTEMBER 09: Defensive lineman Willie Yarbary #48 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons looks on during the game against the Boston College Eagles at Alumni Stadium on September 9, 2017 in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images)
CHESTNUT HILL, MA - SEPTEMBER 09: Defensive lineman Willie Yarbary #48 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons looks on during the game against the Boston College Eagles at Alumni Stadium on September 9, 2017 in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images)
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As the LA Chargers and the rest of the NFL head into the post-minicamp and pre-training camp dark period, the Chargers brought in four new players, each of which have played in The Spring League.

These players include WR Michael Bandy, TE Matt Seybert, DL Willie Yarbary, and LB Damon Lloyd.

Unless you are a fan or alumni of a school at which one of these players played their college ball, you will be forgiven for not knowing their names. Each of these players last played college football in 2019 and went undrafted in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Additionally, none of the group of four played at a college with much success on the national stage. Bandy played his college ball for the University of San Diego, Seybert at Michigan State, Yaraby at Wake Forest, and Lloyd at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Despite not latching on to teams in 2020, each remained committed to their dreams of playing NFL football, putting in the work to stay in shape and prove their worth in The Spring League.

So what does the addition of these players to the roster mean for the LA Chargers 2021 NFL Season, if anything?

In 2021, these four players are almost certain to contribute little. At most, these players will have a very minor special teams contribution.

However, there are two interesting takeaways from this group of transactions.

First, these moves demonstrate that Tom Telesco is willing to go above and beyond and look into any league to seek out and scout for the best free talent.

In the past few years, there have been new developmental football leagues starting and rapidly dying out. Tom Telesco has been one of the most aggressive general managers in the league at signing players from these developmental leagues.

While few of these moves have turned into anything substantial, the Chargers did get a pair of steals in OT Storm Norton and TE Donald Parham from the XFL in 2020.

Although these leagues tend to be lower-level players, those players do have two positive attributes for NFL teams. First, these players tend to be some of the hungriest and hardest working players available. Second, they are completely free to add to a roster, as they nearly always sign for the league minimum.

For these reasons, it is quite encouraging that Tom Telesco is scouting these leagues so aggressively. Another reason makes it even better.

Secondly, with practice squads that are likely to remain larger at 16 players, these young players will be given a good opportunity to grow their skillsets under great coaches.

While these players are unlikely to contribute to the team in 2021, several have very desirable base skill sets that can be improved upon on the Los Angeles Chargers practice squad.

Among the most notable is TE Matt Seybert, who has great strength and speed – even at the NFL level.

Matt Seybert's Pro Day

-25 bench reps (tied for 1st among participating TEs at the 2020 NFL Combine)

-7.01 three-cone time (top 3 among 2020 TEs)

-Clocked between 4.69-4.74 40 time

Story on his training methods that made it possible (subscribe for $1) https://t.co/48EJCl8NMu

— Colton Pouncy (@colton_pouncy) March 25, 2021

Additionally, WR Michael Bandy and LB Damon Lloyd were extremely productive at their respective lower-level colleges and will now get the chance to develop against stronger competition.

Lastly, DL Willie Yarbary, who has been a productive team leader as an edge rusher at Wake Forest, will get time to develop against better competition with the Chargers while gaining weight to become a better defender against the run at the next level.

Next. 53-man roster predictions following the 2021 NFL Draft

So, in the short term, we should expect little out of the group that the Chargers just brought in. But, in the long term, each of these players has the potential to become a useful player for the LA Chargers, and it is encouraging that Tom Telesco is willing to dig deep to find free talent in a time where development further down in the roster is becoming more plausible.

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