Now that the draft is over, and everyone from Sam Bradford to Mr. Irrelevant has been named, it is time to take a look at just who the San Diego Chargers have drafted.
This was a free-wheeling 2010 draft. San Diego exercised movement with almost every pick they took.
But who did San Diego select once they finished trading around the draft?
Look here to find out (grades to come later)...
While the argument remains over whether San Diego did or didn’t give up too much in trading up to select Mathews, the fact remains that Mathews was the highest-ranked workhorse running back among draft pundits.
He is not the big-play dynamo that C.J. Spiller is projected to be, but rather a tough between-the-tackles runner who can push through contact and pound out steady yardage.
Speed-wise he is not an open-field breakaway guy, but has tremendous short-range burst that can get him through a hole quickly before it closes.
He has very fluid hips and light feet that can make his big frame appear much smaller in traffic.
His pass catching and blocking will need to be developed. The system at Fresno State gave him little opportunity to showcase that aspect, though he did look solid catching the football out of the combine.
San Diego traded up once again to land Tim Dobbins’ replacement, and potentially Stephen Cooper’s heir apparent.
CFN scout had this 79th overall selection ranked as the No. 40-overall prospect, thanks to his tremendous physical attributes.
His 35 reps at 225 far outpaced any other inside linebacker. Paired with solid speed, it showcases a player with great versatility and potential.
His ability to play into man coverage as a linebacker is also a strong asset, as that is probably the current ILB trio’s weakest area.
Size and his capacity to be engulfed by lineman could give him difficulty against a power running game like the New York Jets, but as part of a rotational unit, those weaknesses can be minimized.
He should be a tremendous special teams player to start, who can work into the rotation this year and could easily be starting by 2011.
Kevin Ellison stepped in to replace Clinton Hart admirably. He was stout against the run and a solid in-the-box safety for the team.
Limited speed and coverage skills made him a concern as a long-term starter, however, and San Diego essentially took a direct contrast to Ellison in Stuckey.
A bit undersized for a typical strong safety at 6’1", 205 pounds, he brings strong coverage skills and speed to the position that could ultimately earn him the starting role.
It could also make him part of a rotation at the position, with Ellison stepping in on running downs.
The coverage skills and fluidity could also make him a potential free safety at the next level should the team feel compelled to upgrade solid-but-unspectacular Eric Weddle.
At the nose tackle position, San Diego’s rotation of fill-ins performed admirably in the wake of Jamal Williams’ season-long stint on IR.
Ultimately, however, a lack of size up front was a definite weakness.
Cam Thomas steps in ranked as a third-round talent who could have potentially crept into Round Two given the relatively thin stock at the position.
His 6’4", 330-pound frame could make him an instant starter on running downs, where his questionable motor can be offset by his capacity to clog up center of the line.
San Diego’s fairly conservative zone scheme fits this well. He will not asked to be a tremendous numbers guy, so much as fill a need to help the linebacking corps make plays.
San Diego needed a new third-string quarterback to replace the departed Charlie Whitehurst. Crompton provides this, while offering solid potential as the successor to 33-year-old backup Billy Volek.
Crompton started his Tennessee career with difficulty, but showed great progress after the Vols’ coaching change.
He shows all the tools with good size and arm-strength, while his biggest knock (inexperience) should be of little issue given the role he will be asked to fill.
Crompton does not project as a full-time starter at the next level, but should be a highly effective backup once Volek is gone.
With Antonio Gates and Kris Wilson at the tight end position, San Diego was well filled in the receiving department at the position.
Epps is smaller and still a better receiver than the traditional blocking-specialist tight end, though he is seen as primarily a blocker.
His ability as a versatile all-around tight end could make him a better blocking variation of current No. 2 Kris Wilson.