1. Welcome to San Diego Chargers NFL Football Podcast and Forum!

    Bolt Talk is one of the largest online communities for the San Diego Chargers. We host a regular Chargers podcast during the season. You are currently viewing our community forums as a guest user.

    Create an Account or

    Having an account grants you additional privileges, such as creating and participating in discussions. Furthermore, we hide most of the ads once you register as a member!
    Dismiss Notice

Fluker's replacement?

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Blue Bolt, Aug 23, 2016.

  1. Blue Bolt

    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2009
    Messages:
    22,291
    Ratings:
    +4,401
    Spencer Pulley a quick study for Chargers
    Undrafted rookie center-guard continues track to 53-man roster

    By Michael Gehlken | 8:30 p.m. Aug. 23, 2016


    [​IMG]

    The Chargers practiced Tuesday without right guard D.J. Fluker, a veteran of three-plus NFL years who has played more than 3,000 offensive snaps across multiple positions in 43 regular-season and two postseason games.

    His replacement does not have his experience.

    It just seems like it sometimes.

    Undrafted rookie Spencer Pulley worked at first-team right guard during Tuesday’s practice. That should come as a surprise to no one, given how the versatile lineman from Vanderbilt has adapted in recent months. Meanwhile, Fluker is sidelined by an apparent foot injury he sustained Monday.

    On Tuesday, little was disclosed about Fluker’s status.

    What was disclosed, however, evoked optimism.

    The 2013 first-round pick underwent an MRI on Monday, the results of which were negative, coach Mike McCoy said. That’s a positive. Likewise, quarterback Philip Rivers characterized himself as never having been “too concerned” over his teammate’s status.

    As for Fluker, he said that he wasn’t permitted to discuss his injury or, for that matter, much of anything else until receiving medical clearance to resume play.

    “Taking it day by day,” Fluker said. “We’ll see how it goes.”

    While all that suggests the fourth-year veteran will return sooner rather than later, for however long he is sidelined, the Chargers are confident in his replacement.

    Pulley is a rookie, yes.

    But not a typical one.

    “Mentally, he’s like a three- or four-year vet,” center Matt Slauson said. “He truly approaches this (game) the right way, the way he studies it. He puts in the extra work. He plays like a vet. You don’t see that a lot, the way he sees the game, the way he knows the offense. … If he’s ever called on to play, he doesn’t want to be the weak leak. He wants to be ready to roll with all of us.”

    On Tuesday, he rolled.

    Be it with his communication or grasp of concepts, Pulley demonstrated fluency in the offense. His experience at Vanderbilt helped prepare him for such reps, as he did a bit of everything after arriving on campus as a tackle recruit from Memphis.

    Pulley picked up guard and then center.

    Over the course of his career, he made 25 straight starts at right guard between 2013 and 2014 and started all 12 games at center in 2015. He often was a stabilizing presence, as Vanderbilt cycled through quarterbacks.

    With the Chargers, Pulley has played all three interior positions.

    The team drafted two offensive linemen in April — third-round center Max Tuerk and seventh-round guard Donavon Clark. Even before the latter suffered a season-ending knee injury last week, it was a credit to Pulley how relatively smooth his transition had come.

    “You really like the way he’s picked up the system,” coach Mike McCoy said. “Whether it’s a walk-through or live setting, he’s playing fast. And that’s the big thing, especially at center, making a lot of the calls and directing things. It’s not too big for him, and that was (apparent) from the early practices. He was right more often than not at what he was doing. …

    “These next couple weeks will be great for him to get some snaps.”

    Pulley, 23, did not expect to be drafted.

    He had an accurate feel for the process, not having been invited to the NFL Scouting Combine. Some seniors were invited to the Senior Bowl, the hallmark all-star showcase game at which prospects are evaluated. Pulley went to the Tropic Bowl, a first-time showcase game in Miami.

    The NFL, though, is about taking advantage of opportunities.

    Pulley did at that game and then his pro day. Now, he is in San Diego.

    He is expected to join a list of players who entered the NFL as undrafted Chargers rookies. Current players include tight end Antonio Gates, running back Branden Oliver, wide receiver Tyrell Williams, inside linebacker Nick Dzubnar and safeties Jahleel Addae and Adrian Phillips.

    “You hear stories all around the league,” Pulley said. “I just thought, just because you’re an undrafted free agent doesn’t mean you can’t play. It’s not like they’re going to shut you out. For me, it was, ‘I’m going to keep doing what I’ve been doing my whole life, keep playing every play.’”

    “I’m not thinking about what level I’m at or where I am. I just think, ‘I’m going to play football because I love playing.’”
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  2. Pointyearedog

    Pointyearedog I only put idiots on ignore...

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2008
    Messages:
    5,341
    Ratings:
    +1,729
    So, are they replacing Fluker with another Fluker?
     
    • Winner Winner x 1
  3. OwenBoltMeany

    OwenBoltMeany BoltTalker

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2014
    Messages:
    50
    Ratings:
    +12
    UDFA Pulley as a potentially starting Guard for us?

    I can sleep well tonight.
     
  4. Jesse Kemp

    Jesse Kemp BoltTalker

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2013
    Messages:
    1,107
    Ratings:
    +533
    Louis Vasquez on the market. Ronald Leary a potential trade target.
     
  5. woodeye

    woodeye Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2016
    Messages:
    324
    Ratings:
    +51
    Pure speculation here.

    I heard Brad Sham, Cowboys radio play-by-play for 37 years, say recently that La'el was the most improved player in camp for them.

    This makes Leary a viable target.

    Cowboys have a desperate need for a
    4-3DE/PRS. Oh brother, maybe Attaochu or Emanuel--and keep Landrum and Tourek...

    This should go over well.

    But then again, I see the middle of our offensive line as the key to our entire offense. Slauson needs some help.
     
  6. woodeye

    woodeye Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2016
    Messages:
    324
    Ratings:
    +51
    Breaking news. Pats are cutting Center Bryan Stork. Injuries ? DeGuglielmo, your thoughts ? (Slauson to Guard.)
     
  7. Jesse Kemp

    Jesse Kemp BoltTalker

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2013
    Messages:
    1,107
    Ratings:
    +533
    If by some crazy chance it's not over injuries, I'd definitely bring him in.
     
  8. Jesse Kemp

    Jesse Kemp BoltTalker

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2013
    Messages:
    1,107
    Ratings:
    +533
    Apparently it's over chronic concussions. Shame.
     
  9. Jesse Kemp

    Jesse Kemp BoltTalker

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2013
    Messages:
    1,107
    Ratings:
    +533
    He was also thrown out of a recent joint practice with the Bears for fighting, so maybe he's too much of a wild card for Ol' Bill?
     
  10. woodeye

    woodeye Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2016
    Messages:
    324
    Ratings:
    +51
    Yes. Shame.

    With the uncertainties surrounding both Franklin and Fluker, regarding health and job performance, I seriously wonder what it would take to get Leary.

    Very interested.

    It's the same old story. These big guys are supposed to give us some push, some running lanes for MG III--and a clean inside pocket,
     
  11. AnteaterCharger

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

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2006
    Messages:
    19,108
    Ratings:
    +2,928
    Shame about Donovan Clark, could've come into this spot perfectly. At the very least with him and Pulley and even Wiggins there's enough bodies to toss and maybe find a starter or something.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2

Share This Page