The Broncos can wash their hands of the San Diego Chargers after November 27th. After playing the Chiefs in Kansas City and then hosting the New York Jets four days later, playing the Chargers in San Diego is a lot like those last few miles in a marathon. More than anything, the mental toughness needs to be there because the physical strength will be waning.
Since I’ve already done a recap of the Chargers from last season, let’s take a look at what they did in the draft.
The Bolts’ first pick in the 2011 draft came 18th overall where they selected defensive tackle Corey Liuget, a 300 lb. big man out of Illinois. The Chargers’ defense was their biggest strength last season, yet their first three selections in this year’s draft came from the defensive side of the ball. In the 2nd round (50th overall), they nabbed Clemson free safety Marcus Gilchrist, and then they took Jonas Mouton, an outside linebacker from Michigan with the 61st overall pick.
The Chargers next three selections were all about speed. Because Darren Sproles is an unrestricted free agent and the Chargers probably won’t bring him back, this was an important portion of the draft for the team.
In the third round (82nd overall), the Chargers took speedy wide receiver Vincent Brown out of San Diego State. Then they went after cornerback Shareece Wright out of USC with the 89th pick. Then, they brought in some more competition in the backfield by drafting Jordan Todman from Connecticut in the 6th round.
The Chargers capped their draft with G Stephan Schilling and OLB Andrew Gachkar in the 6th and 7th rounds, respectively.
With five picks in the first three rounds in the draft and trading to be in such a position, the Chargers sought to get players who can make an immediate impact for the team. Missing the playoffs despite being strong on both sides of the ball and winning seven of their last nine game of the season is the only reason that Norv Turner kept his job. It’s time for the team to get off on the right foot, and these draft selections could make that happen, especially on special teams, an area that saw too much struggle last season.
The Broncos never have it easy against the Chargers, and in the past, playing them later in the season has been a huge disadvantage. This could be the Broncos toughest test of the season considering when they play the Bolts and the improvements that the team made in the draft.
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