NFL Draft 2011: San Diego Chargers Eyeing UCLA Linebacker?
San Diego Chargers Reportedly Visited With Akeem Ayers
In what can only be described a statistical anomaly, the San Diego Chargers missed the playoffs last season, despite leading the league in both total offense and total defense.
By the numbers it would seem the Chargers are without any major flaws, but the numbers would be wrong.
Aside from the void in the receiving corps that could potentially be left by free agents-to-be Vincent Jackson and Malcolm Floyd, San Diego needs to add youth at various points on the defensive roster, most imperatively at end and outside linebacker.
And by the look of things, that’s where team officials are revving up their efforts in preparation for the draft.
According to ESPN.com AFC West blogger Bill Williamson, who cited a source close to UCLA, former Bruins linebacker Akeem Ayers recently visited with San Diego. Ayers, who is expected to be selected in the second half of the first round, fits the mold of an outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme, which the Chargers run.
Should San Diego swing and miss on Ayers, a viable option could be Muhammad Wilkerson, a rapidly rising defensive prospect from Temple. At 6’4”, 315 pounds, Wilkerson is strong enough for gap maintenance in the 3-4, and also agile enough to rush the quarterback off the edge.
For more on the 2011 NFL Draft, visit Bleacher Report’s Draft Hub.
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