BOLTHYPE's Jeff Williams breaks down his notes on the final day from Chargers 2010 Mini Camp.
The Chargers ended their first minicamp today, and it will be remembered as much for who wasn't there as for who was. While the Chargers had their full allotment of defensive linemen (10 in all) and running backs/fullbacks (totaling 9), the Chargers were sorely lacking in wide receivers and to a lesser extent offensive linemen. With WR's Jackson, Floyd, Nanee, and Davis out due to injury or for contract issues, the receiving corp was down to practice squader Gary Banks and undrafted rookies Bryan Walters and Seyi Ajirotutu to take snaps with the 1st string. Unfortunately, they played like the inexperienced players they are. And with Clary out due to injury and McNeill out with his own contractual concerns, the Chargers had Brandyn Dombrowski and Corey Clark starting at the tackles. Not exactly a comforting thought for Chargers fans, but it is only May.
Friday's practice continued the Chargers emphasis on rookie instruction, as a number of rookies are expected to make a significant different in 2010. RB Ryan Mathews spent a lot of time working one-on-one with RB coach Ollie Wilson going over defensive reads, as did rookie TE Dedrick Epps with TE coach Rob Chudzinski. NT Cam Thomas was ridden pretty hard by DL coach Don Johnson on multiple occasions- a good sign, because Thomas' previous reputation for taking plays off has to change for him to make a strong contribution this season.
Other sights and sounds:
* Marcus Mason, who was claimed on waivers from the Redskins, and rookie Shawnbrey McNeal seem to be the leading contenders for the 3rd string RB spot. Both shared carries with the 2nd team offense (Mathews and Sproles rotated with the 1st team).
* FB Jacob Hester took most if not all of the carries with the 1st team offense. I have to wonder if FB Mike Tolbert will rotate in later in the off-season, or if he is destined to play a slightly different role on this offense in 2010.
* Friday's 1st team defense included Cesaire, Boone, and Castillo on the defensive line, with English, Burnett, Cooper, and Phillips at linebacker, and Cason, Gregory, Weddle, and Vasher in the secondary.
* Darren Sproles was the obvious favorite of the few kids in attendance. Immediately after camp ended Sproles was the first person they sought out.
* K Nate Kaeding looked good kicking medium-range field goals, but his jogging looked awkward, like a guy who is coming back from an injury (imagine that, huh?).
* P Cort Johnson handled all of the punting duties during the Friday's sesson.
* Some of the more interesting sounds from Friday's practice included a lot of chatter from the defense during team drills. Thomas and Phillips could be heard chirping throughout morning drills. And at one point during practice Norv could be heard yelling at his defense to "plug the holes," because Mathews had some huge running lanes to blow through early on.
Labels: Chargers Practice 2010
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