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Anteater's Chargers Draft Forecast

Discussion in 'NFL Draft' started by AnteaterCharger, Apr 23, 2011.

  1. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

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    Have fun tearing me apart

    Chargers 2011 Draft Forecast
    Loren S Casuto

    For yet another year I will provide who I think the Chargers will select in this year’s draft. Unlike previous years I’ve done this, the Chargers have immediate needs all over the place especially considering the potential to lose numerous valuable contributors if/when there is free agency. Combine this with the first time in five years that the Chargers didn’t make the playoffs, and you have a team and a GM that needs to nail this draft. While some of this might be hopeful/wishful thinking, I think the Chargers stand a good chance selecting these players. So without further delay:

    With the 18th pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select Cameron Jordan Defensive End from California
    The Chargers might have many needs but defensive line is definitely a priority. Though they found a gem in Antonio Garay and have a potential great player in Cam Thomas, their defensive ends have been mediocre at best. Luis Castillo is getting better but is vastly overpaid and hasn’t lived up to the promise he showed in his rookie season, that’s of course when you can get him onto the field. Jacques Cesaire is a good player and has done very well considering, but he’s a free agent and has always been better suited for a backup role. Vaughn Martin has made great strides but still has a ways to go before he can be a good backup, let alone a starter. Travis Johnson and Ogemdi Nwagbuo haven’t shown much either along with the former being a free agent. The Chargers have got to find someone to put opposite Castillo.
    The son of Vikings pro-bowl tight end Steve Jordan, Cameron has been prepared for the NFL his whole life. At 6’4 287 he ‘s the perfect size for a 3-4 DE with great speed, long arms and huge hands. He shows great speed for his size and exceptional power along with outstanding balance and control. He is a dominating run stopper, the primary job for a 3-4 DE, routinely knocks blockers back and away and also shows a great ability to disengage from offensive linemen. He dominated OT Nate Solder in both the Senior Bowl and the game versus Colorado as well as being instrumental in shutting down Oregon’s high powered offense. He never quits and will take advantage of anyone napping, as well as showing incredible instincts and awareness for the play around him. He also shows incredible versatility; he played as a 4-3 DE and DT and has even done some work as a 3-4 outside linebacker. The negatives are that he needs to learn more pass rush moves, and needs to get stronger in his lower body.
    The reason I think the Chargers can acquire a Cameron Jordan without moving up is that I believe there will be a run on QBs early in the draft; too many teams need it combined with no free agency. However the Chargers could end up in one of three situations: 1) the Chargers really want someone (Watt, Robert Quinn or even Jordan) and trade up. AJ has clearly shown a willingness to do it. 2) The Chargers reach to get a third tier defensive end (Wilkerson, Heyward) because there’s a run on defensive players. 3) There’s no one defensive left and the Chargers take either an outside linebacker or an offensive tackle (hopefully in that position the Chargers make a trade but there’s no guarantee).
    Other potential targets here: J.J. Watt, Ryan Kerrigan, Muhammad Wilkerson, Cam Heyward.

    With the 50th pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select Martez Wilson Linebacker from Illinois
    While Shaun Phillips has shown signs of greatness at outside linebacker over the last two years, there’s three problems. First, he played well over 900 snaps last year, and that’s way too many. Second, Phillips is very good on his own but is not as good as he was when he had Shawne Merriman opposite him. Third, Larry English has not shown he can be a top flight starting outside linebacker. One way or another the Chargers have to address this in the draft, they not only need someone to push English but someone who can take snaps for Phillips from time to time. Antwaan Barnes was a nice find but he’s strictly a pass rusher and not a multiple down OLB. While they could go with an OLB in the first round, especially if the best DEs are off the board, if Cameron Jordan fell to the Chargers that would make the decision very easy
    Wilson is a unique specimen of linebacker because he could fit anywhere at any position, especially in a 3-4. At 6’4 250 he has good size along with very good speed and agility. Unlike many potential OLBs though, Wilson has played outside before and already has a wide range of outstanding pass rushing moves with very good initial and closing speed. Wilson is also an effective run stopper with good instincts to locate the ball and to get away from blockers. He’s also an effective tackler, but not someone who will knock out other players. On the negative he doesn’t have great instincts in coverage, even though he has the speed to match up man to man effectively. He needs to learn to not look into the backfield as much and needs to control his aggression. He also has a little bit of an injury history (out all of 2009 with neck injury) and a little off the field trouble (suspended once in 2008 and was involved in a fight in 2010 though he was coming to the aid of a teammate). Wilson is considered one of the best linebackers in the draft and might be gone by then. If so the Chargers would be well suited to draft someone like a Brooks Reed or a Jabaal Sheard. I think he will be available because while he’s played in a 4-3 he doesn’t fit that system as well as a 3-4 while at the same time not playing there or as a defensive end. Combine it with his issues and a very poor workout, and he could very well fall.
    Hopefully Larry English takes that next step and becomes a top flight OLB. If that’s the case, Wilson has great value to play both outside and inside – like Applewhite only much better. He can provide the break that Phillips need and even give the Chargers another rusher in a three outside linebacker package. If English continues on his path towards being a first round bust, Wilson is someone with the talent and ability to become that good pass rusher the Chargers desperately need outside.
    Other potential targets here: DE/OLB Jabaal Sheard, WR Jon Baldwin, OL Danny Watkins, WR Torrey Smith, CB Ras I Dowling, DE Christian Ballard, S Quinton Carter

    With the 61st pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select
    Orlando Franklin Offensive Tackle from Miami (FL)

    The Chargers have had a pro bowl caliber left tackle for five years in Marcus McNeil but have not had a great right tackle in longer. Jeromey Clary has never been one of my favorites though I have to admit he’s shown improvement over the last year. However Clary is just one of a large number of free agents the Chargers will have to deal with when/if there’s a free agency. As such the Chargers would be left with Brandon Dombrowski who showed last season he’s a better swing tackle then a starter.
    Franklin has primarily played guard for the hurricanes but has played tackle before. At 6’5 316 he’s a natural size for a right tackle with the right aggressive temperament for the job – he doesn’t just look to beat you, he looks to bury you. He has great strength and punch in both the running and passing game. He shows impressive power in driving players off the ball in the run game as well as showing the ability to shove edge and speed rushers outside of the running and passing lanes. He’s also been very effective against some of the best talent in this draft; he handled Da’Quan Bowers effectively and routinely dominated DT Marvin Austin. The negatives on him is he’s had an injury history especially on his left meniscus, that he has not played tackle as much as he’s played guard and that he has some lazy qualities (not that he’s lazy but has those qualities).
    This is a guy I’ve been high on for a while and think he’d be a perfect fit into the Chargers system. Combined with a healthy Louis Vasquez, Franklin would provide a ton of power and nastiness on a right side of the line that has been a problem for years. Finally the Chargers could feel comfortable running on the right side with two massive individuals clearing the lanes. He will need to be the focus of the offensive line coach to ensure that he does not get too complacent and keeps his weight in check, but he’s going into an experienced group of linemen who can mentor him effectively.
    Other potential picks: OT Marcus Cannon, CB Brandon Burton, WR Titus Young, ILB Quan Sturdivant, DB/RS Marcus Gilchrist, WR Jerrel Jernigan

    With the 82nd pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select
    Greg Little Wide Receiver North Carolina

    Prior to the 2010 season, few areas of the team were as good as their stable of wide receivers. After the 2010 season there’s more questions then answers. Vincent Jackson’s futile holdout cost him and the team money and the services of a great wide receiver. He’s franchised but there appears to be too much bad blood to see a long term relationship in San Diego. This was Malcolm Floyd’s time to shine but injuries slowed him down and he proved to be less effective without Vincent Jackson, in addition to him being a free agent. Patrick Crayton and Kelly Washington were very good pickups who fit the system but aren’t top-flight receivers. Legedu Naane and Buster Davis are out of here, the latter finally cut after showing what a bust he was, the former released after showing what an idiot he was. The Chargers must draft someone unless they want Patrick Crayton and Seyi Ajirotutu to start.
    Greg Little missed the entire 2010 season after being embroiled in a “scandal” where he, DT Marvin Austin and DE Robert Quinn got in trouble for receiving improper benefits from an agent. Little has been forthright and honest about what happened and it hasn’t seemed to hurt any of the players’ draft status. On the field, the 6’2 231lb wide out is a great fit for the kind of vertical offense the Chargers have. He has very good speed (though he’s a big strider) combined with a great knowledge of how to set up and confuse defenders. He shows outstanding hands and body control, a requirement for a QB who likes to throw jump balls to his receivers. Little also shows incredible passion and fire for the game on; he will go through the middle, grab the ball, get hit and pop back up. For a college player he’s also a good route runner but doesn’t run a large number of routes, so he will have to improve. In addition Little has a great deal of experience for the Tar Heels as a kick returner. On the negative he needs to control his emotions and needs to learn to pay attention to the little details – his drive and determination are not an issue but only his finer points.
    I see a lot of Vincent Jackson in Little; in fact his scouting reports all read very similar to those I red for Jackson back in 2005. Little could fit into the scheme beautifully learning from Charlie Joiner the finer points. He shows the drive and passion to be something special and would be a great compliment to Floyd and Jackson for the first year, assuming they cooperate/re-sign. At worse case Little would provide depth as a slot receiver and kick returner for a year.
    Other potential picks: ILB Casey Matthews, S Tyler Sash, NT/DE Kendrick Ellis, DE/OLB Dontay Moch, OT Marcus Gilbert, DE Jarvis Jenkins
     
  2. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

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    With the 89th pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select Mason Foster Inside Linebacker from Washington
    The Chargers picked a hell of a time to have three quarters of their inside linebackers go into free agency; 2011 has one of the worst classes of inside linebackers in years. Frankly if this was a normal year I’d do my best to find a replacement ILB in free agency, but since that’s not possible right now, the Chargers will have to find someone to pair with 2010’s third round pick, Donald Butler. While I like Casey Matthews, I think he’s going to be overdrafted because of his last name. So instead the Chargers will get the teammate of last year’s third rounder.
    Foster played outside linebacker for the Huskies but will fit inside of the Chargers 3-4. A three year starter with great instincts, motor and speed, he was a lone bright spot this year for Washington’s defense. He is a team leader, a strong tackler who can light someone up and make plays sideline to sideline. At 6’1 245lbs he doesn’t have the size you normally look for in a 3-4 nor is he great (though he’s far from bad) in coverage. He also needs to keep his aggression in check, he can be a little out of control.
    Foster looks and plays very similarly to Donald Butler, though Foster is a better run stopper while Butler was better in coverage. Both were outstanding players for a college team that didn’t have much. Foster can provide the toughness and strength that Butler doesn’t provide and with two intelligent backers, the Chargers won’t run into the problems they had after losing Cooper, where they lost the man who made the adjustments for the defense.
    Other potential picks: LB Akeem Dent, WR Vincent Brown, TE Virgil Green, DE Lawrence Guy, NT Jerell Powe

    With the 183rd pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select Mark Herzlich Linebacker from Boston College
    The Chargers select their third linebacker in one draft; while that would seem weird most years, as mentioned above, this is a year where the Chargers need to replenish their depth at this position. Remember, the Chargers have only two inside linebackers on their roster (Butler & Foster) with one guy who can play inside and outside (Applewhite). At 6’4 244 Herzlich is a physical specimen who was a dominating presence on the Eagles defense. He is a powerful physical presence with a great ability to take on and shed blockers on his way to making a play. He plays 100% at all times and never quits, has great instincts and is incredibly smart. Herzlich was the unquestioned leader of the Boston College team. In addition he is very skilled as a pass rusher and blitzer with a good mix of speed and moves. Unfortunately what knocks him down this far is that he missed the entire 2009 season recovering from cancer and has a metal rod inserted into his left leg to help him recover. He came back in 2010 and showed signs he was returning as the dominant force he was in 2008. I could easily seen concerns about his health and recovery dropping him this far, and if he were here, Herzlich would be a great risk to take. If he checks out medically and can continue to recover, the guy could be a dominating presence at linebacker. And if he doesn’t, well, this far down he isn’t that big of a loss. Still the chance on greatness this far down is too good to pass up.

    With the 201st pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select Eric Hagg Free Safety from Nebraska
    The Chargers have had safety trouble for the longest time and now face trouble because of the uncertainty of that position. They drafted Darrell Stuckey last year believing he could be a starter at strong safety only to see him get injured and play in only one game. Eric Weddle had, arguably, his best year at free safety but is now a free agent and his return is uncertain. Coupled with the pending free agency of Paul Oliver but the acquisition of Bob Sanders and a back up free safety becomes a higher priority. Hagg is at his best as a centerfielder, the same position Weddle plays. He has good speed, very good body control and is a secure and willing, but not a powerful, tackler. Hagg can also play special teams, giving the team more flexibility. On the negative, Hagg doesn’t have great instincts so he can’t replace Weddle as someone who can call plays and adjustments in addition to the fact that he’s not a physical safety, so he’s a free safety only. At best case scenario Hagg can compete with Gregory, Quinton Teal and Paul Oliver for a backup safety job, at worse he can be pressed into service as a centerfielder if we lose Eric Weddle. Either way the depth at safety and special teams Hagg will give us makes him a valuable addition this late.

    With the 233rd pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers select Schuylar Oordt Tight End from Northern Iowa
    For my last pick, I will pull a Bobby Beathard and selecting a player from a tiny school! Combine this with the Ray Chan special (selecting someone with an impossible to pronounce name), and this is a perfect selection for the Chargers here. At 6’5 ½ 261, basically the same size as Antonio Gates, Oordt converted from Wide Receiver and is a major project. He doesn’t run a lot of routes, he needs a lot of time in the weight room to build up his strength and learn how to block better. What Oordt does have is size, good hands and very good speed for a tight end (ran a 4.63). He has been very good at exploiting seems in a defense and can take advantage of teams napping, a very useful skill in a vertical offense. I basically see him and think with two or three years he could be a good tight end similar to Antonio Gates, and around the same time that Gates’ amazing career would be winding down. He needs a lot of work but this deep in the draft he definitely fills a need for a project who can learn from Gates and, potentially, Randy McMichael.

    Hey! Why didn’t you pick a:


    Third running back: because the Chargers don’t necessarily need one. The Chargers have said they want to give Tolbert and Mathews more playing time and compared to the long list of immediate needs the Chargers have, an extra running back is not one of them.

    Cornerback: I considered it thoroughly and if someone like a Ras-I-Dowling or a Brandon Burton fall to us in the second, I wouldn’t be surprised to see AJ snatch him up But this is again not as essential as some of the other needs; Jammer and Cason are very good and Dante Hughes showed some good ability at nickel.

    Nose Tackle:
    That’s the one part of the defensive line we don’t need now; Garay was outstanding and Thomas is coming along well. Not as high of a priority as defensive end in addition to this not being a great class for 3-4 nose tackles unless you want to see our first round pick go to Phil Taylor out of Baylor, which would be a wicked waste.

    Quarterback: I think there’s going to be a massive run on QBs in the initial part of the first round because of the need and panic of teams without one especially with no free agency. In addition, after the Jonathan Crompton experiment I get the feeling the Chargers will look for a veteran backup as they did after releasing Crompton early in 2010.

    Safety earlier: This is a very weak safety class and I’m not sure that reaching for a player would be the smartest thing to do. In addition the Chargers and Weddle have suggested they want to come to an agreement when free agency starts. In addition they had just drafted Stuckey last year and still think highly of him as well as signing Bob Sanders. This isn’t as big of a need in my opinion.
     
  3. matilack

    matilack #therealagent47

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    I like all the picks. I'm 99% sure Franklin won't fall there though.
     
  4. Boltjolt

    Boltjolt Well-Known Member

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    Pretty sure some those guys wont fall to us. And you think AJ wil pick Little? I actually like him a lot and would be happy with th e pick but he has attitude problems plus a suspension for the year. I say No!

    Wilson i dont see falling to us and i also dont agree he has good instincts. He does not imo. However, i can see him being a better OLB in a 3-4 than a MLB in a 4-3 or a 3-4 since his primary job would be to rush the passer. I do believe one of the two,...Jordan or Watt fall to us because i think there will be a run on QB's so either guy id be happy with.
    I see no point in picking a late round safety. That guy isnt going to help us if you feel we need help at safety. This safety class sucks and i really think if Stuckey were in this draft, he would be one of the top safeties drafted.
     
  5. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

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    I will give you my predictions of who we will draft the day after the draft is over....
     
  6. Boltjolt

    Boltjolt Well-Known Member

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    I think he could. Im just not confident AJ picks a OT that early. Ive been projecting that for years and it only happened when we got McNeill and that was a more desperate time than this is.
     
  7. matilack

    matilack #therealagent47

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    If you ever want a good laugh at a mock draft go lookup Brian Baldinger on NFL.com.

    I'm pretty sure that this man has no concept of what schemes each team runs, much less their actual needs. His mocks are so dramatically different from his peers I wonder if he doesn't have some undiagnosed lasting brain damage from an old concussion.
     
  8. matilack

    matilack #therealagent47

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    Like Ben Ijalana, Franklin has been poked and prodded by more than half the teams in the league. We'd have to take him at 50.
     
  9. Boltjolt

    Boltjolt Well-Known Member

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    I dont think so. There are a lot of good players in this draft and teams have more than one need. Franklin is good but i dont see him going near that high. I like Carpenter better than Franklin and some scouts are saying James Brewer COULD be a first rounder though i dont buy it. I have both guys going in the third. Franklin the early 3rd, Brewer later in 3rd. Carpenter late 2nd. Brewer and Franklin could easily change places but there are good players rated as high or higher and some player will just simply slide. As you know, that happens all the time. There is only 32 players that can be drafted in each round...til the comp picks start.
     
  10. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

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    Most reports I've seen say that Franklin would go somewhere in the late second round or early third; he's a highly thought of guard with the ability to play tackle, that's very valuable and I think he could go to the Bears in the second who need help all over the place. Brewer is a left tackle who needs seasoning and time, Carpenter reminds me too much of Clary (solid, hard worker, but not that talented). Franklin would provide some bulk, some power and some nastiness to the right side of the line especially paired with Vasquez.

    Wilson I think will be seen as an OLB as well, so he could be taken by the Bills or the Cardinals in the second, strong possibility. I think though he will fall to us because of his specific scheme fit and because he doesn't fit the need of most teams unless they specifically need a pass rusher who needs work on the other aspects of his game. I admit though that's the one I'm more unsure of.

    Hagg is just someone who could fill the Oliver/Gregory hole if either left and if god forbid Weddle leaves. That late I see him as nothing more then depth. I could realistically though see selecting Marcus Gilchrist from Clemson in the third round where I grab Foster because he can be played everywhere including as a returner, that versatility could be wildly worth it.

    The reason I picked Little is because even though he was tossed out this past year, he doesn't have issues beyond t hat and because he has come off, by all accounts, wonderfully in the interviews. He's a guy who made a mistake more then someone like a Jimmy Smith that just seems to be trouble. And I think he would be the perfect person to learn behind Patrick Crayton. I have to admit though I am curious about Jon Baldwin
     
  11. Boltjolt

    Boltjolt Well-Known Member

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    Carpenter is MUCH better at this stage than Clary was and would be a big upgrade in a short time. Carpenter never got any hype but to me he was real impressive during senior bowl week and the game and in hits deep OT draft, he will be a 2nd rounder.
    I actually really like Little and he also is said to have attitude problems so i dont know. Interviews will be key but AJ is a sticjler for charactor guys now so i dont know if he even gave him an interview. Hope so . As for safeties, i dont want anybody from this class. This class is weak and there isnt anyone IMO that would be an upgrade over Stuckey worth using a draft pick on.
     

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