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The DJ Fluker article that was all too predictable...

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by matilack, May 9, 2015.

  1. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2015/may/09/chargers-dj-fluker-weight-tackle/

    D.J. Fluker lighter but still growing

    That D.J. Fluker is a Chargers tackle today and not guard may have something to do with the past few months, he believes, spent divided between three training facilities in two states, the result a lighter and leaner lineman than last season.

    It is the look the Chargers desire.

    It could produce the player he hopes to become.

    Down to 345 pounds and not done yet, Fluker uses the term "sophomore funk" to encapsulate 2014. He was more advanced from a mental standpoint than in his rookie year but the fight to manage his weight, which only grew after midseason leg injuries, did him no favors in pass protection or his overall game.

    Fluker cares.

    He is not happy.

    This is a man whose roommate, usually right guard Johnnie Troutman, has wondered on game-day mornings what the heck is going on when he overhears him in their team-hotel bathroom, shouting into the mirror that he is the best offensive tackle in the league and that nobody can stop him.

    Fluker, in two seasons, has learned to keep it down.

    He closes the bathroom door and slips a towel beneath to muffle the noise.

    "It's a little embarrassing," Fluker said. "Sometimes, my roommate is like, 'What is he doing?'"

    Turning talk into reality is the challenge.

    Fluker turned 24 this March and knows this about himself: He is a visual learner.

    What the 2013 first-round pick has seen in San Diego is a quarterback in Philip Rivers who's regularly among the first and last players present at Chargers Park. When Fluker arrives around 5:45 a.m., Rivers and his center already are in the film room, studying an opponent.

    He sees how Rivers and others study. He sees how tight end Antonio Gates prepares.

    He sees how he can, too.

    "If I don't see someone do it, I'm probably not going to do it; I don't know how," Fluker said. "But when I see them do it and do it and it's repetitive and I see their routine, it's like, OK. I want to be one of those guys now. The more I see it, the more I want to do it. I know that I can do it.

    "Not only that but my own family was talking to me about it. 'You know what? If you want to be that guy you were at Alabama, you've got to carry yourself like that all the time.' That opened my eyes."

    Fluker and his camp devised a plan.

    After the Chargers coaches made it clear they wanted him to lose weight this offseason, no longer playing at 353 pounds like Fluker says he did late in 2014, Fluker returned to the Atlanta performance facility where he trained prior to his rookie year.

    He lost weight. He then moved the work to Alabama, split between Tuscaloosa and Northport.

    "It was foot speed, foot speed, foot speed," said Fluker, who wants to weigh closer to 330 pounds by August. "Working on pass sets, working on punching and timing with my hands, I've been really emphasizing on that part of my game because that's really what I need, the punching part to keep defenders off me."


    Fluker is entering his third NFL season at right tackle.

    There was some question as to whether he would.

    Before the 2013 draft, some scouts envisioned him as a better guard than tackle at the next level. All the Chargers had said about the topic is he's a tackle, their tackle, until this offseason when General Manager Tom Telesco and coach Mike McCoy said publicly that his position, based on offseason events, could change.

    The team didn't sign a starting tackle in free agency. It didn't draft an offensive lineman.

    Fluker acknowledged he heard talk of a possible position switch.

    "it's really based on my weight," he said. "I'm hypothetically speaking, but if I was heavier when I came in or something like that, maybe I would be playing guard. They probably would have drafted a guy. I don't know. I'm not speaking on knowledge. As the coaches told me, just lose the weight. Get it off of me. Learn how to maintain it. It's a lesson for you to learn as a man growing up.

    "It's a business of what you do. That's what I learned. It is a business. You are your own corporation. What you (put) in is what you get out. I promised myself I was going to work to where I needed to be, and that's what I did. … Last year was not my best season. Overall, I did OK. I can do a whole lot better than what I did before. Just because I mess up one season doesn't mean that every season is going to be the same."
     
  2. Blue Bolt

    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    So, boxing wasn't the answer? ;)
     
  3. HEXEDBOLT

    HEXEDBOLT Don't like it, lump it!!!

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    I reckon it's better than ballooning up to being a 380 pound sack of lard.
     
  4. JohnnyX

    JohnnyX 2017 Chargers Head Coach

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    Go Fluker! I still believe you can be a All-Pro RT, just need a competent RG next to you.
     
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  5. Blitzy

    Blitzy Spanos Chargers Troll

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    Look at my Avi's backdrop ;)
     
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  6. Moses

    Moses Can You Stand The Rain?

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    He was 350+ last year?! No wonder he was so slow
     
  7. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    I don't know if it's ego or denial that is keeping them from moving him to OG, but it should happen soon if he doesn't lose at least 20 more pounds.
     
  8. Moses

    Moses Can You Stand The Rain?

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    I don't know that it's either to be honest. I think it's more a case that they don't have a better option at RT to necessitate the move inside for Fluker.

    If they'd signed La'el Collins, or drafted an OT, then maybe we'd be having a different conversation.
     
  9. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    I agree. But the fact that they didn't draft or sign a viable OT is exactly why we're having this conversation. The last time we saw Fluker he was getting tarred and feathered by Justin Houston, in what was arguably the worst single performance any one player had on our roster last season. Yet still it doesn't seem like a priority for the organization to upgrade RT, or move him to his more natural position. It's not like Troutman is blowing it up at RG.

    And I'll just add that we already knew Fluker wasn't naturally quick footed, so before this article I had no reason to place any blame on him personally....now I do.

    2 years after drafting him and the situation is actually worse than I thought it would be.:tdown:
     
  10. Blue Bolt

    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    Oh, Troutman is "blowing it up" alright. He's like a live grenade.... you don't to be anywhere near him. ;)
     
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  11. Blitzy

    Blitzy Spanos Chargers Troll

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    Only if combined with agility ladder drills ;)

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Blue Bolt

    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    Painted ropes don't count. ;)
     
  13. Blitzy

    Blitzy Spanos Chargers Troll

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    If you are so concerned, you can buy him the fancier type for his BD from Amazon for under $30 ;)
     
  14. Montrose

    Montrose BoltTalker

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    I really want DJ to be the RT we all hoped he'd be but I fear he is just not going to get there.

    His or team stubbornness keeping him there? Who knows. Fingers crossed I'm wrong and last year was just a blip due to injuries, RG issues and a general lack of confidence due to ever poorer line play. Seems a lot to overcome though.
     
  15. Bruce Daniel

    Bruce Daniel BoltTalker

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    Prepare yourself for the "Fluker can't play guard" onslaught that's about to come. For the record, I agree. I can't believe we're sending him out there again this year. Really hoping we pick up a lineman between now and start of season. Heck, I might even be down with putting Franklin at RT, Fluker at RG, give Robinson a crack at C, Watt at LG and Dunlap at LT. Assuming no other acquisitions are made.

    This best part about this article is that it says how hard DJ has been working to get in shape then notes he's down a whopping 8 pounds from 353 to 345. LMAO. I'm 6'5 and weigh right around 300 lbs. My weight can fluctuate between 280 and 320 fairly easily. It's so much easier for a guy at that weight to shed 30-40 lbs than for an in shape guy to go from say 195 to 185. For reference take a look at Hardwick these days. He probably started last season at 290-300 lbs and by the time he announced his retirement he was down what looked like to be around 210. I'll put it this way, if I didn't do a thing other than cut down/out sugar, bread and soda pop I'd lose 20 pounds in a months time easy. It would level off a bit after that, I'd still lose some but not at a 20 lb/month clip. Now if I incorporated a medium to high intensity workout along with the diet I would shed the weight down to 260-265 in under 90 days. Just not impressed with an 8 pound loss this offseason for DJ.
     
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  16. Ski

    Ski BoltTalker

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    DJ, it's called "push aways." Push yourself away from the dinner table.
     
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  17. JohnnyX

    JohnnyX 2017 Chargers Head Coach

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    CHARGER WARRIOR76 ‏@DjFluker76 29m29 minutes ago
    Proving people wrong this year i know they talking. Just know I am bout to silence everybody.#motivation

    Pro-Bowl season oncoming.
     
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  18. Bruce Daniel

    Bruce Daniel BoltTalker

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    Time to put up or shut up DJ. Been talking since he came into the league, it's time for his play to catch up to his mouth
     
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  19. JohnnyX

    JohnnyX 2017 Chargers Head Coach

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    Umm....it's May. Exactly what do you want him to do but talk? Smh haters gonna hate.
     
  20. Bruce Daniel

    Bruce Daniel BoltTalker

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    And I'll keep on hatin until he keeps Justin Houston from racking up 4+ sack games on him. Talk don't mean sh*t, lose the weight, get in shape and work on that technique. That's all I wanna hear from DJ right about now
     
  21. Nomad

    Nomad Very Senior Member

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    Isn't that what he said? It is true, haters are going to hate, no matter what.
     
  22. Bruce Daniel

    Bruce Daniel BoltTalker

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    He said "Pro Bowl season coming" have you seen a pro bowl caliber season from DJ yet? Yeah exactly. But oh wait, I'm a "hater" never mind.
     
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  23. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    Just using the term hater tells you where his mind is at, he's thinking about it emotionally, which is not what this is about.

    Nobody hates DJ Fluker, the guy has a heart of gold from what I hear, I want it to work out for him at RT as much as anyone. But it's about recognizing limitations, and Fluker had limitations even before he beefed up to 350+.

    I said 2 years ago, a move to G seemed inevitable without drastic improvement in footwork and loss of at least 10 pounds. Well here we are... No hate involved, just facing the reality of the situation.
     
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  24. Kwak

    Kwak ....

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    I'm guessing the tweet stopped after the #motivation and the pro bowl season was Johnny's comment.
     
  25. HEXEDBOLT

    HEXEDBOLT Don't like it, lump it!!!

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    I'm hoping Fluke has a break out year, otherwise, the Bolts may still be on the hunt for good O-linemen.
     
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