A couple players the Chargers should look at

The Chargers are looking to be an improved team for the 2006 season and will count heavily on their young defense to continue to progress and mature. As it stands now, the roster is filled with talent in all aspects of the game - offense, defense, and special teams. But like all NFL teams, the San Diego Chargers are always trying to get better. With a transition occurring next season with Philip Rivers as the starting quarterback, it will be up to the defense to keep the Chargers in games.

There are a few players out there, both in Free Agency and in the Supplemental Draft, that the Chargers would be hard-pressed to not seriously consider adding to the mix:

CB Dennis Weathersby
6'1" 204lbs

You can read his prospect profile here. The following is from Wikipedia:

Dennis Weathersby (born June 16, 1980 in Glendora, California) is a former NFL cornerback for the Cincinnati Bengals. He played in college for Oregon State University. At OSU he started 45 games, and set a school record of 57 passes deflected. He was named to the Pac-10 All-Academic team 4 consecutive years. He was projected to be drafted in the first or second round of the 2003 NFL Draft. However, on April 20, 2003, only three days before the NFL draft, he was shot in the back in an apparent gang-related shooting when he and his friend were mistaken for gang members. Despite the incident, the Bengals still drafted him in the fourth round. He survived and recovered from the shooting, but his injuries took longer than expected to heal and he only played in 4 games his rookie season. On April 12, 2004 he was involved in a car accident that put him into a coma. Dennis eventually came out of the coma, but the Bengals, believing that he would never play football again, cut him before the 2005 season. Despite his run of bad luck, Dennis is making another attempt at coming back to the NFL. It was reported by ESPN that doctors cleared him to resume work on May 17, 2006, and that he is eager to get back to playing. Wikipedia

The first thing that jumps out is Weathersby's size. He has exactly what you look for in a modern corner with good height and the size to be a sure tackler in the open field. He was initially projected as a first rounder with some considering him the best corner in the nation in 2003. He has an excellent vertical leap and the 4.4 speed a cover corner needs.

Recently his doctors cleared him to play and he is reportedly back to 205 pounds and eager to play, so as a free-agent the Chargers could add him as needed depth at Cornerback but he also has the physical tools to play Safety in the NFL. This kind of flexibility should be attractive to the Chargers, who have needs across the secondary. The roster seems stocked with Safeties, but there has yet to emerge a clear-cut starter opposite free agent signee Marlon McCree.

Dennis Weathersby is a talented player, and All-American Academic for 4 years, and is from Southern California. He has run into bad luck and has never had the chance to prove himself in the NFL. Adding a guy like Weathersby brings the needed depth and competition to the defensive backfield.

LB Ahmad Brooks
6'4" 255lbs

In my opinion, the Chargers spending as high as a second round pick to acquire Ahmad Brooks who be a steal. As a freshman at the University of Virginia, Ahmad Brooks set a school record with 117 tackles, 10 for a loss. He followed that up his next season leading the team with 90 tackles - 10 for a loss, to go along with 8 sacks and 2 INTs. He had trouble bouncing back from various injuries his junior season and played in only 5 games. Brooks was eventually kicked off the Cavaliers after failing multiple drug tests (marijuana).

Matthew Barrows, of the Sacramento Bee, reports agent Greg Williams said Virginia LB Ahmad Brooks has met, as previously reported, with officials from the San Francisco 49ers, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Miami Dolphins, New York Giants and Green Bay Packers, and that the Chicago Bears have shown strong interest, as well. Another three teams have inquired about meeting Brooks, Williams said, but those visits have yet to be scheduled.

Ahmad Brooks draws favorable comparisons to current NFL superstars Ray Lewis and Brian Urlacher. Brooks is continuing to get into better and better shape, becoming faster and stronger in his attempt to become drafted on July 13th. He is a rare athlete in size and speed, and has the added bonus of playing all linebacker positions in the 3-4, something he did at UVA.

Teams like the Steelers, Patriots, and Chargers (successful 3-4 teams) place added value on linebackers who are versatile because it allows the coordinators to get creative and matchup well against various offensive sets.

Brooks would be the answer the Chargers are looking for in terms of the future of the ILB position. Pairing Brooks, an ACC standout with another ACC standout in Shawne Merriman will allow the two to grow together in the defense and would be one of the scariest pairings of linebackers in the NFL. Ahmad Brooks brings incredible range, intensity, and hard-hitting impact ability to a defense that sorely needs it in the middle.


Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 Round 4 Round 5 Round 6 Round 7
1 3,000 33 580 65 265 97 112 129 43 161 27 193 14.2
2 2,600 34 560 66 260 98 108 130 42 162 26.6 194 13.8
3 2,200 35 550 67 255 99 104 131 41 163 26.2 195 13.4
4 1,800 36 540 68 250 100 100 132 40 164 25.8 196 13
5 1,700 37 530 69 245 101 96 133 39.5 165 25.4 197 12.6
6 1,600 38 520 70 240 102 92 134 39 166 25 198 12.2
7 1,500 39 510 71 235 103 88 135 38.5 167 24.6 199 11.8
8 1,400 40 500 72 230 104 86 136 38 168 24.2 200 11.4
9 1,350 41 490 73 225 105 84 137 37.5 169 23.8 201 11
10 1,300 42 480 74 220 106 82 138 37 170 23.4 202 10.6
11 1,250 43 470 75 215 107 80 139 36.5 171 23 203 10.2
12 1,200 44 460 76 210 108 78 140 36 172 22.6 204 9.8
13 1,150 45 450 77 205 109 76 141 35.5 173 22.2 205 9.4
14 1,100 46 440 78 200 110 74 142 35 174 21.8 206 9
15 1,050 47 430 79 195 111 72 143 34.5 175 21.4 207 8.6
16 1,000 48 420 80 190 112 70 144 34 176 21 208 8.2
17 950 49 410 81 185 113 68 145 33.5 177 20.6 209 7.8
18 900 50 400 82 180 114 66 146 33 178 20.2 210 7.4
19 875 51 390 83 175 115 64 147 32.6 179 19.8 211 7
20 850 52 380 84 170 116 62 148 32.2 180 19.4 212 6.6
21 800 53 370 85 165 117 60 149 31.8 181 19 213 6.2
22 780 54 360 86 160 118 58 150 31.4 182 18.6 214 5.8
23 760 55 350 87 155 119 56 151 31 183 18.2 215 5.4
24 740 56 340 88 150 120 54 152 30.6 184 17.8 216 5
25 720 57 330 89 145 121 52 153 30.2 185 17.4 217 4.6
26 700 58 320 90 140 122 50 154 29.8 186 17 218 4.2
27 680 59 310 91 136 123 49 155 29.4 187 16.6 219 3.8
28 660 60 300 92 132 124 48 156 29 188 16.2 220 3.4
29 640 61 292 93 128 125 47 157 28.6 189 15.8 221 3
30 620 62 284 94 124 126 46 158 28.2 190 15.4 222 2.6
31 600 63 276 95 120 127 45 159 27.8 191 15 223 2.3
32 590 64 270 96 116 128 44 160 27.4 192 14.6 224 2

July 1, 2006

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