April 25, 2004

I'm Not Thrilled With The Chargers Draft!

I spent most of Saturday and parts of Sunday watching the National Football League hold its annual draft of college players on ESPN.

I'm not even going to try to explain the Manning Mess! I'm just going to talk about the players the Chargers actually ended up with. The draft had seven rounds and the Bolts had 11 choices.

I'm not thrilled with most of their picks! :(

Philip Rivers, the quarterback the Bolts landed instead of Prince Manning III, has very impressive credentials as a leader, winner and person, but he throws funny.

I like Rivers a lot, but he scares me! If that funny throwing style works in the NFL, I expect Rivers to be a tremendous choice for the Chargers! If that style doesn't work, then the Bolts will still be in trouble QBwise!

I personally think the best QB in this draft may turn out to be Ben Roethlisberger, who went to the Pittsburgh Steelers on the 11th pick.

As for the other 10 Bolts selections, I have a couple of draft publications and I checked a couple web sites that rated players available for the draft. In the writeups of way too many of the players the Chargers picked, I found the phrase "Not much upside."

Many of the guys were praised for having a "strong motor," right before the scouting reports mentioned their lack of size or speed, or raised questions about their ability to avoid injuries.

It seems to me that the Chargers picked a lot of hard-working journeyman-type players. Most of them sound like they'll be role-players and part-time guys, not starters and superstars! :(

I'll be interested in seeing how the Union-Tribune grades the drafts of each of the 32 teams tomorrow. I'm afraid the Chargers aren't going to get much more than a C. :(

Don't get me wrong, though, I like what I learned about the character of almost all 11 of the new Chargers, so I desperately want them to prove me wrong! I want them to make me rave some day about what an excellent draft the Chargers had in '04, and how it was the beginning of great things for my team!

Remember these names: QB Philip Rivers, DT Igor Olshansky, K Nate Kaeding, C Nick Hardwick, DE Shaun Phillips, DE Dave Ball, RB Michael Turner, WR Ryan Krause, DT Ryon Bingham, OT Shane Olivea, OT Carlos Joseph!

Welcome to San Diego, gentlemen! May you all stay many successful years!

NOTE: I added a comment to this message on April 26:

The Union-Tribune guy, Joe Stein, gave the Chargers draft an A- this morning! Either he likes the guys the Bolts picked much better than I do, or he just wanted to give the highest grade for the day to the Chargers! He only gave one other A-, to the Detroit Lions.

Here are Stein's comments about the Bolts:

Getting both Rivers and a 2005 No. 1 from the Giants for Manning was a coup. Drafting a kicker in the high third round is questionable. Some lower picks such as Ball and Turner were inspired. However, where are the receivers?

I don't think Stein's comments jive with his grade. I think if you're giving an A- you should be raving about all the players more than he did.

Posted at 11:10 PM in Sports