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The Chargers draft picks

Discussion in 'San Diego Chargers Hall of Champions' started by robdog, Apr 21, 2007.

  1. robdog

    robdog Code Monkey Staff Member Administrator

    Jun 29, 2009
    By Loren Casuto
    <em> Bolt Talk Staff Writer</em>

    <img src="http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/multimedia/photo_gallery/2001_nfl_draft/news/2001/04/21/nfl_draft/5.jpg" title="LaDainian Tomlinson on draft day" alt="LaDainian Tomlinson on draft day" align="right" height="242" width="160" />While I haven't been able to blog or write articles for the last few months do to law school, I thought it would be important to write an article on the upcoming draft. This is where AJ Smith is known best for working his magic; where AJ basically made himself a legend in the eyes of Charger fans. And while we are used to a very slow off-season with few moves made by the front office, we are all awaiting with anxiousness what AJ Smith will do this year. Now this article is coming out a few days before the NFL draft starts and as such there could be a number of trades made, not including a deal for Michael Turner. These draft picks are who I think AJ will select based on the movements of players on the draft charts, analysis of mock drafts on numerous websites and my own analysis. Of course when attempting to analyze the brain of AJ Smith, especially in the draft, you're lucky you can get one pick out of all of them right. Nevertheless, here are my thoughts as to who the Chargers will be drafting on Saturday April 28th and Sunday April 29th.
    <strong>With the 30th pick overall in the 2007 NFL Draft the San Diego Chargers select Michael Griffin, safety from Texas.</strong>

    There are a million different scenarios for who the Chargers will select based on the moving of the draft board and any potential reaches or trade downs. As such it makes it very hard to predict who would be available at the 30th overall selection let alone who the Chargers will pick. Michael Griffin can go anywhere from Dallas at 24th at the earliest, to midway through the second round. If he's available and there's not a wide receiver whom the Chargers love staring at them at that spot, I feel Griffin will be the pick. Coming from a program that produces outstanding defensive backs, Griffin is a great hybrid safety with the ability to tackle and hit well near the line and to play back in coverage. With his speed, kamikaze style of play, good character and willingness to learn and be coached, he strikes me as a very AJ type of player. While there are concerns about his recognition and whether he's a better athlete then a player, Michael Griffin will fill a major need at strong safety for a long time to come.

    Other potential picks: Steve Smith WR USC, Justin Blalock OG Texas, Ted Ginn Jr WR OSU

    Dream picks: Robert Meachem WR Tennessee or Reggie Nelson S Florida

    Not going to happen: Dwayne Jarrett WR USC, Dwayne Bowe WR LSU, Brandon Merriweather S Miami
    <strong>With the 62nd pick in the 2007 NFL Draft the San Diego Chargers select Lamar Woodley linebacker from Michigan.</strong>

    Outside linebacker is not an immediate or crucial need for the Chargers when you consider the two studs currently manning that position; Shawne Merriman and Shaun Phillips. But if anything should be learn from last year, it's that you can never have enough depth at this crucial position as Phillips missed time with injuries and Merriman was suspended. AJ Smith has been to see Lamar Woodley and has interviewed him, which suggests an interest in the hybrid defender from Michigan. Woodley is a naturally talented pass rusher with a nasty attitude and can hold up against the run. While he will need to learn the nuisances of playing linebacker and his lack of speed could hamper him, he would be a crucial backup and would be able to spell both Merriman and Phillips more effectively then Carlos Polk or Marques Harris.

    Other Potential Picks: Aaron Sears OT Tennessee, Craig Davis WR LSU, Anthony Gonzalez WR OSU, John Wendling S Wyoming, Michael Walker WR UCF

    Dream Picks: Eric Weddle S Utah

    Not going to happen: Aaron Rouse S Virginia Tech, Sidney Rice WR South Carolina

    <strong>With the 93rd pick in the 2007 NFL Draft the San Diego Chargers select Michael Walker wide receiver from Central Florida.</strong><em>
    While it might seem odd to wait until the third round to fill what is one of our most essential needs, there's a lot of evidence to suggest that AJ Smith is targeting this player specifically. Walker had an incredible career at UCF switching fulltime from cornerback at the end of his sophomore year and has not looked back since. He has great speed, running a 4.35 at the combine, good height and plays with a passion and team first attitude. What suggests that Mike Walker is being targeted by AJ Smith is that the Chargers had the biggest delegation at Central Florida's workout and Walker had a private meeting with both GM AJ Smith and his second Buddy Nix. Walker has quickly risen up the draft boards and he could be selected in the second round if Lamar Woodley and/or Eric Weddle will be off the board.
    <strong>With the 96th pick in the 2007 NFL Draft the San Diego Chargers select Brandon Frye offensive tackle from Virginia Tech.</strong><em>
    Brandon Frye reminds me of Kris Dielman; Frye began his career in 2002 at defensive end and was then moved to the offensive line in 2003, before starting to play on the line in 2004. A starter in 2005 and 2006 Frye played through numerous injuries with grit, toughness and determination. He has outstanding power and is a solid pass protector, but doesn't have the footwork to be a left tackle. Frye is clearly a developmental prospect but at the very least, he could provide competition in the event that Shane Olivea is moved to right guard. At the worst he's a better depth pick then Jeromey Clarey and will push Cory Lekkerkerker for the third tackle spot.

    Other Potential Picks in the third round: Marshal Yanda OT/G Iowa, Paul Soliai NT Utah, John Wendling S Wyoming, Josh Gattis S Wake Forrest, Atwan Barnes OLB Florida International

    Dream Picks: Michael Walker, Manuel Ramirez OG Texas Tech

    Not going to happen: Kareem Brown NT Miami, Sabby Piscetelli S Oregon State
    <strong>With the 129th pick in the 2007 NFL Draft the San Diego Chargers select Le'Ron McClain fullback from Alabama.</strong>

    At this point in the draft, all bets are off as to what AJ Smith will do. Second day draft picks have a real uphill fight to make a roster as talented as the one we have here. As such its completely unknown what AJ will do and such can be seen in 2006 when AJ Smith's draft picks from the fifth round on were made without, what seem to be, reason or logic. AJ Smith made Lorenzo Neal the best paid fullback in the NFL (for roughly two weeks before the Falcons threw a ton of money at Ovie Mughelli), but there's no denying Lorenzo Neal is getting up in age. In addition Andrew Pinnock has made better progress being used as a big running back over a blocking fullback. McClain is an outstanding lead blocker with good vision to see the holes and hits his targets well. He offers little in way of running or pass catching, in other words he's a younger Lorenzo Neal. McClain needs some time in the weight room to work on his strength and conditioning but he can be an effective lead blocker in a few years when Neal retires.
    <strong>With the 167th pick in the 2007 NFL Draft the San Diego Chargers select Walter Thomas defensive tackle from Northwest Mississippi Community College.</strong><em><strong> </strong></em>

    Walter Thomas is an unknown name to a lot of people but he's raised a lot of eyebrows among scouts in the last few months. Thomas started out at Oklahoma State but left because of academic issues and ended up at NW Mississippi College. Thomas appeared in the ‘Texas vs. the Nation" All Star game and literally caused jaws to drop with a quick first step and incredible power. He followed it up with an even more impressive workout. Roll these numbers around your brain: Thomas is 6'5, 373lbs, he ran a 5.11 and a 5.20 in the 40 and threw up 225lbs 33 times. Those are incredible statistics even with his raw technique and his lack f exposure to big time competition. Walter Thomas though is an incredible physical specimen and well worth a fifth round pick. I personally think, with a couple of years working with Wayne Nunnley, Walter Thomas could be even more dominating then Jamal Williams.
    <strong>With the 172nd pick in the 2007 NFL Draft the San Diego Chargers select Kyle Young offensive guard/center from Fresno State.</strong>

    I really like Kyle Young. A lot of people don't and there are a lot of concerns about him. He's slow and too big, missed games at Fresno State because of academic issues, has slow feet and doesn't have great body definition. What does excite me about Kyle Young is that he's a powerful mauler who just engulfs defensive tackles at the point of attack and does not lose if he's locked on. In addition he works very hard, plays with a nasty streak and has incredible leadership skills and football intelligence. He sounds like an AJ type of football player for an AJ type of smash mouth running game and would be an outstanding replacement at right guard for Mike Goff.
    <strong>With the 240th pick in the 2007 NFL Draft the San Diego Chargers select Nick Leeson long snapper from Virginia Tech</strong>

    If AJ Smith picked a kick off specialist in the 6th round, completely stunning all of us Charger fans, then I'm betting that AJ Smith will be looking this year to add some youth to the only special teams position where we can be considered ‘grizzled'. David Binn is the only remaining Charger left from the 1994 Super Bowl team. At some point and time, a replacement for him has got to be found. Nick Leeson is the best pure long snapper in the college draft with great accuracy in his snaps and rarely makes a kicker adjust to a poorly thrown ball as well as being a good special teams player. He has one and only role, and as such he's a luxury, but he's a great choice for a team that has everything.

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