Monthly Archives: April 2017
With the 13th overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, the Arizona Cardinals selected Temple linebacker Haason Reddick. Besides his passionate showing on the field, (recording 10.5 sacks and 22 tackles for loss in his last season of college), he also has a inspirational story that must be told.
In an interview with Jim Rome, Haason Reddick stated, “I didn’t know that you could go to college and walk on. I thought you needed a scholarship to be able to play on the team. So at first, I thought my football career was done.” Reddick said.
At Temple, Reddick walked on as a freshman with no scholarship, showing that he has determination and that is just the type of mentality the Arizona Cardinals are looking for. After he walked on, he not only earned a scholarship, but the respect of his coaches and teammates through skill, persistence, and determination.
“He’s everything right with college football.” His former coach at Temple Matt Rhule continued, “He’s tough, he’s hard-nosed. He got his degree and played so hard for us and so well for us and helped us turn this program around.” Rhule said.
One major perk besides his game-time mentality is the fact that he can play both outside and inside linebacker. His former coach at Temple spoke of this in an interview with Vince Marotta of Arizona Sports by saying, ““He’s a guy who can play off the ball and be a weak side inside linebacker and use that 4.5 speed to cover guys out of the backfield. At the same time, I think he can be a tremendous weapon blitzing. Not many running backs are going to be able to block this kid.” Rhule commented.
It looks like the Cardinals did okay with their first round pick this year, however, only time will tell. Arizona Cardinals General Manager Steve Keim said that he will not be red-shirting to start. Instead, he will play behind two Pro Bowl linebackers in Karlos Dansby and Deonne Buchannon. Reddick will be on the field in nickel formations. He will have great mentors in Dansby and Buchannon, giving the Arizona Cardinals a very bright defensive future.
Reddicks’ selection is a feel-good story as over 100,000 fans gathered at the steps of the famous Philadelphia Art Museum to watch the first round of the NFL Draft. Reddick went to Temple University in Philadelphia and a very loud cheer rose as his name was called as they witnessed the local boy make good.
Check out this video of his path to the NFL from childhood to first round pick below.
Unlike every other article I write, I am not going to ramble incessantly in this one.
Here are some fan reactions regarding the Los Angeles Chargers’ newest addition in wide receiver Mike Williams.
Teofilo Nikolao Tuiteleleapaga III Initially, it caught me off guard. Reason being i felt we really needed pass rush help to compliment the emergence of Bosa. But, after letting it sink in..i understand the pick. And with more time passed, i actually like it. Could be a true #1 reciever that we’ve lacked in recent years. Big body and leaping ability makes up for his Speed imo. Hes not FAST, but fast enough. Immediate Red Zone threat. Complimented with the presence of Henry, Tyrell and company..he will be an immediate impact player
Gilbert Garcia I like Mike Williams! I think he has a great ability for separation and ability to go up and get balls.
Nick Millican Top 10 talent that fits a need
Terry Coe Jr I don’t understand LAC and their willingness to let Rivers get beat up. I have seen the slide Okung brought to Denver and I had hoped they would bring in some talent for competition. (Love this, btw)
Didier Dubrit I was a little bit afraid of Hooker because of injuries (as any Chargers fan know, if we can avoid injury prone players with all the injuries we already get, that’s a plus).
I was hoping either for DT/DE to complement Bosa and give us a crazy pass rush/run defense, or Williams, who gives a different kind of asset to the receiving corps that Chargers were missing since VJax left.
It would also have been nice if Adams had fallen to us, but that was unlikely.
Overall, I’m happy with the selection. This draft has more impactful defensive players, so I think it’s a good idea to go get the best offensive players when they are still there.
One fan agreed with the other so much, that he replied in this manner:
Brian Kates Dave, take everything Dubrit just said as my words as well……damn near word for word my thoughts. I am happy with Williams considering this draft.
Thomas Powell Defense wins championships. The chargers have holes on dline and in the secondary. By picking a WR they lost the cream of the crop players that are game changers. Another doofus move by the organization and of course applauded by their fanbase.
Daniel Locke NFL teams continue to draft players named Mike Williams without learning their lesson…those who are ignorant of the past are doomed to repeat it.
James Ebo When it comes to the NFL Draft the theory is that it’s supply and demand. The supply of defensive players meets the demand for the Chargers defensive needs. Because of that theory, they can afford to find additions to the defensive side of the ball and with the way the first round played out, there is valuable defensive talent in the early part of the second round. With that being said the selection of Mike Williams signals the future at Wide Receiver for the Chargers. Williams is a power receiver. He’s a red zone, outside the numbers, back shoulder fade, aggressive receiver that the Chargers have lacked since the days of Jackson and Floyd. He creates separation with power, he’s open when he’s not open and attacks the ball in the air better than any receiver in the draft and for that matter on the Chargers WR corps. This selection says that Anthony Lynn wants to implement a physical, power running game offense that’s dominant in the red zone. Grade A-
Eugenio Rodriguez Another big target one more year for Rivers….(V. Jackson, M.Floyd….) Amazing player, he can really catch the football to high level.
Ryan Brosnan VINCENT JACKSON AND RIVERS WILL MEET AGAIN… THATS HOW THIS PICK IS TO ME
Jeff Martin Big physical receiver that will fill the void that was left when Malcom Floyd retired
And then my brother, Will, drops the knowledge we all needed to read.
Will McCafferty I’m fine with the pick. Rivers has been making chicken salad out of chicken shit for years now. Allen is good, but rarely there, due to injury. Maybe putting a second receiver on the field that the defense must account for will take pressure, and some hits, off of Allen.
Personally, I would have gone defense but I like to think that an NFL GM and his teams talent evaluators know more than I do.
People are just having knee-jerk reactions after just one round. They don’t remember a year ago when they were angry with the Bosa pick.
I LOVE THE FANS!!!
P.S. The dudes in the pic are my dudes. Y’all look great.
Now that the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft has been completed, folks everywhere are dishing out hot takes on how they feel about each and every pick — myself included.
In an article on Chargers.com, wide receiver Keenan Allen shared his thoughts on what he’ll tell rookie wideout and first-round draft choice Mike Williams.
Just be you. Come in and play with confidence. Don’t hold anything back and just do what you’ve been doing. Everyone knows what you can do. Just be confident.
Additionally, Allen spoke about adding a weapon like Williams to the mix.
It’s crazy. You add him to me, Tyrell (Williams), Dontrelle (Inman), Travis (Benjamin) plus Antonio (Gates), (Hunter) Henry, Melvin (Gordon); I mean, it’s crazy to defend that. It’s going to open things up for us. We have a lot of threats and different kinds (of receivers). Deep threats. Big guys. Guys who can run everything on the route tree. He is really going to open things up. Anything we can do to make the plays to win the game I’m all for. He’s going to help us.
While I love the sentiment provided by the former Cal Bear, I think it would be fitting if he told Williams, ‘just be healthy and let your play do the talking.’
P.S. Hi, Kyah, Kayden, Carter and Harrison!
As you all know by now, the Los Angeles Chargers used their first-round pick on Clemson wide receiver Mike Williams.
Reactions from both the media and fans have been all over the board.
When it comes to NFL news, I prefer to stick to the network that specializes in covering America’s favorite sport: NFL Network.
Other than Steve Mariucci, Mike Mayock is my favorite cat on NFL Network, with Daniel Jeremiah and Adam Rank fitting in there somewhere, too.
Mayock dropped an article on NFL.com, highlighting his thoughts on each draft choice in the first round, including his take on the newest wide receiver to don lightning bolts.
7. Mike Williams, WR, Los Angeles Chargers
Analysis: “Mike Williams is all about separating with length, power and catch radius. He’s a dominating, physical presence. He’s a back-shoulder guy. You’ll love him in the red zone.”
Though his time as an NFL player may be forgotten by most, Mayock knows his shit. He is NOT some Mel-Kiper-Todd-McShay toolbox, looking to make a living off of having very little knowledge of the NFL game. (Don’t @ me)
Initially — yeah, it just happened and I am already adjusting — I was infuriated by the selection, adding a wideout with the squad’s first choice was a bit puzzling.
But, in reality, what do I know?
The Chargers currently have these wideouts on their roster: Keenan Allen, Tyrell Williams, Travis Benjamin, Dontrelle Inman, MIKE WILLIAMS, Da’Ron Brown, Isaiah Burse, Geremy Davis, Javontee Herndon and Jamaal Jones.
With the seventh pick in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft, the Los Angeles Chargers select Clemson wide receiver Mike Williams.
Below is the reaction of Williams and his family and friends while at Utopia Restaurant and Lounge, per the Twitter account of Janel Klein of NBC Sports.
— Janel Klein (@JanelKlein) April 28, 2017
Despite having receiving options in Keenan Allen, Tyrell Williams, Travis Benjamin, Dontrelle Inman, Hunter Henry and Antonio Gates, general manager Tom Telesco decided that the future is now, selecting Williams out of Clemson with the team’s first-round pick.
There is no doubt that the former Tiger brings an intimidating force in the red zone, but was the first round the right place to snag a wideout?
Only time will tell.
The kid has phenomenal size and ability, don’t get me wrong.
My concern lies in the fact that if quarterback Philip Rivers doesn’t have time to take advantage of all of his weapons, including Williams, all of the offensive toys in the world can’t help the Bolts win games.
(No, they shouldn’t have taken an offensive lineman in Round No. 1.)
One thing worth watching: It will be interesting to see how the wide receiving corps shakes out once final cuts come in August. Perhaps Telesco decides that either — or both — Benjamin or Inman is expendable due to the drafting of a top-tier wide receiver.
Benjamin, signed by the Chargers during the 2016 offseason, was incredibly disappointing as a returner, and didn’t flash much as a receiver in his first year with the team. Inman, despite how much I like him as a player and a person, might be J.A.G. (just a guy) when it comes to filling out an NFL team’s roster, though he seemed to be a trusted target of the aforementioned Rivers last season.
For those of you who still care about the fate of the team formerly known as the San Diego Chargers, I bring you my one-and-only mock draft. Yes, I know they are now the Los Angeles Chargers, but like a vast amount of you I hate the sound of it, the look of it and my fingers hurt just typing it. We all cope in our own way and I go forward with solid belief that by the time the two years in the StubHub Center is over, Dean Spanos will have sold the team (by will or force) to an owner who will return the team where they belong in America’s Finest City.
With the draft only a few days away, thankfully, the season of a million mock drafts will also come to an end. I’m throwing a wrinkle into this year’s edition. Since the team never picks the player I want, for the first few rounds I am separating my dream pick (the guy I want) and the actual pick (the guy I believe they will actually take). I’m happy to be wrong on last year’s first round pick (I wanted Jalen Ramsey. Joey Bosa was and will be a home run for the next decade as long as he can stay healthy).
I hope you enjoy my mock. Let me know what you think in the comments below.
Round 1: (My pick) QB Deshaun Watson, Clemson. It is that time. Time to pick a quarterback of the future. Like I’ve admitted many times over, I’m the President of the Philip Rivers fan club but even I can see that his run is coming to an end. I’m not saying his skill is declining. He will be among the league leaders in passing as usual this season. However, his body takes a pounding every season from having a suspect offensive line blocking for him. We never see his name on the injury report but we’ve seen him labor during games. Couple that with his disdain for leaving San Diego to play in Los Angeles and I say he’ll bridge the two-year gap leading into the permanent residence in the Taj Mahal Rams owner Stan Kroenke is building.
Hence, the benefit of having a star quarterback on the roster. All the talk is about how none of the quarterbacks in this draft are ready to be day one quarterbacks because none of them came from a pro-style system. Air raid quarterbacks fail at large because they’re thrown into the fire too soon.
Watson would come into a perfect scenario where he would get to sit for two seasons behind Philip Rivers and learn the game from a master of the craft. That would be more than ample time to master the playbook and learn the nuances of a pro-style offense from taking the ball from under center to reading defenses and making calls at the line. This is the perfect time for a top-tier quarterback. Watson brings an undeniable charisma, raw natural talent, athleticism rarely seen in a quarterback, and the swagger that comes with leading his team into the National Championship game two seasons in a row and winning one.
In my opinion, Watson is the best quarterback in this class. Everyone will say taking him at pick seven will be a major reach. They won’t be saying that when he’s torching defenses in 2019. The precedent is as close as the guy he will be replacing. Rivers sat two years behind Drew Brees and I’d say that turned out pretty damn well wouldn’t you?
On to the man I think Telesco will actually pick…
S Jamal Adams, LSU. It seems to be six of one, half a dozen of the other when it comes to the top two safeties in the draft, Adams and Malik Hooker out of Ohio State. Both are big, physical and versatile playmakers who will provide an instant impact when they step on the field. Given the fact that seemingly every year two teams trade up into the top five for a quarterback, I believe this year will be no different. The teams trading up will push both safeties into the Chargers spot and given the choice, I believe Telesco will take Adams. If Adams is gone, the pick will be Hooker.
Round 2: (My pick) S Jabrill Peppers, Michigan. I know what you’re thinking. Two safeties? Not quite. Peppers is listed as a safety because he can play both safety positions exceptionally well. However, he can play slot corner and linebacker, too. Talent that versatile is a steal in the second round. Up until a short while ago, Peppers was considered a top-ten talent. A failed urine test revealed this week has damaged his draft stock and will lead to a precipitous drop. First round talent will drop into the second and this will be the biggest name of them all.
Speaking of steals, the second round pick of the Chargers also managed to fall from grace and into Day 2 for reasons unknown.
OT Cam Robinson, Alabama. The Chargers can’t have enough help on the offensive line and the 6’6″, 322-pound behemoth will be a Godsend if he’s still on the board when the Chargers pick.
Round 3: WR Curtis Samuel, Ohio State. Dual-threat capability as a running back and wide receiver fills a need to find a replacement for the now-departed Danny Woodhead in the backfield and adds depth to the receiving corps. By the way, his 4.3-speed would also come in handy in the return game.
Round 4: DT Dalvin Tomlinson, Alabama. More beef in the center of the defensive line is always a good thing and a blue blood at this spot is a great value pick.
Round 5: ILB Ben Boulware, Clemson. Boulware is a bulldog on the field. He is always near the ball, a tackle machine and a defensive leader. Great football IQ.
Round 6: QB Josh Dobbs, Tennessee. This is the point where the Chargers waste a draft pick on a quarterback project. Could be a different QB, but a QB nonetheless.
Round 7: RB Wayne Gallman, Clemson. The Chargers lack depth in the running back room. Gallman is an excellent all-purpose back and powerful rusher.
So concludes my Tigers-heavy, (If I get my way) mock draft. What do you think? It will be fun to see the drama unfold over the next three days — especially since we are here in person, AGAIN!
The Greg One
On April 18th, the soon-to-be Las Vegas Raiders announced they have cut nose tackle Dan Williams. The release comes two seasons after picking him up as a free agent from the Arizona Cardinals. The L.A. Chargers should be interested in this development as they sorely need depth along the defensive line, particularly at nose tackle. Williams would be a solid backup to starter to Brandon Mebane and give the Chargers two legitimate veteran run stoppers in the middle of the line.
Williams is currently listed at 6’2″, 330-pounds. In Arizona, he was a cornerstone of their defense, consistently occupying two blockers and plugging running lanes. As a result, pass rushers such as Karlos Dansby, Calais Campbell, Darnell Dockett, Bertrand Berry and Daryl Washington feasted on quarterbacks. With the uprising of young, hungry pass rushers and linebackers on defense, having wily veterans like Mebane and Williams is just the type of anchor needed to make the defensive line unstoppable.
Bringing in Williams also finally rectifies an egregious mistake that is seven years old.
I take you back to the 2010 NFL Draft.
The San Diego Chargers had closed a 13-3 season with a humiliating loss in the divisional round to the New York Jets. All-Everything running back Ladainian Tomlinson asked for and was granted a release. Seated at the 28th spot in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Chargers sacrificed their first- and second-round picks to the Miami Dolphins to move up 16 spots and select…
Fresno State running back Ryan Mathews…(insert rim shot here)….
The heir apparent to Tomlinson, like a bottle rocket, had a few flashes…and fizzled out. In five seasons, he had 24 touchdowns and 15 fumbles lost. Mathews missed 25% of the teams’ regular season games with injuries (20 out of 80). Mathews has logged a full 16-game season only once in his career (2013). That includes his current stint in Philadelphia.
And the injuries….soooo many injuries. Hamstring. Quadriceps. Groin. Thumb. Both collarbones. Concussion. Both ankles. And on and on and on….
Back to the 2010 NFL Draft. With the 26th pick in the draft the Arizona Cardinals selected Dan Williams and he became their keystone nose tackle. Aside from a broken arm in 2011 in which he missed the last six games he has only missed four games his entire career. Williams hasn’t missed a game in the last three seasons. The only reason he’s a free agent now is because of his salary cap number. Cutting Williams took $4.5-million off the Raiders’ ledger.
Perhaps the Chargers thought Mathews was the only worthy replacement in the draft. Jahvid Best, Dexter McCluster and Ben Tate were all selected after the Chargers’ original draft slot. Brain Westbrook, Thomas Jones, Willie Parker, Jamal Lewis and Pierre Thomas were all available in free agency.
What other names were missed in the first round? There was Safety Earl Thomas with the 14th pick. DE Jason Pierre-Paul (15), G Mike Iupati (17), C Maurkice Pouncey (18), WR’s Demaryius Thomas (22), Dez Bryant (24) and CB Devin McCourty (28).
As far as that second round pick goes, that was the year Rob Gronkowski was drafted. What’s Gronkowski up to these days? Dude has so much game he’s bodychecking pro wrestlers at Wrestlemania and cutting in on White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer during an official press conference!
And that’s only this month…
Take a moment and envision a two-tight end set of Antonio Gates and Gronk! The Chargers wouldn’t have needed wide receivers and Philip Rivers would’ve been smashing passing records. DT Linval Joseph (46), LB Daryl Washington (47), DE Carlos Dunlap (54), LB Sean Lee (55) and WR Golden Tate (60) all heard their names called that round.
As much as that day in 2010 will live in infamy for me and many other Chargers fans, bringing Williams into the fold will add some salve to the wound. It makes sense and there’s history there. While Williams was in Arizona his head coach was current Chargers Offensive Coordinator Ken Whisenhunt. Don’t be surprised if a visit isn’t already in the works.
Moral of the story is do your homework. Stick to your board. Don’t let one great year of college football eclipse a checkered injury history coming into the draft. In short…
Don’t Mathews it up!
The Greg One
Below is my mock draft on behalf of all of the SAN DIEGO Chargers fans.
1st Rd. – Fuck you, Dean Spanos
2nd Rd. – Fuck you, Dean Spanos
Turd Rd. – Fuck you, Dean Spanos
Whoreth Rd. (Mike Pisciotta Round) – Fuck you, Dean Spanos
5th Rd. – Fuck you, Dean Spanus
6th Rd. – Up yours, Dean Spanos
7th Rd. – Fuck you, Dean Spanos
The San Diego Chargers had been in my life since my birth. Like me, my children wore Chargers gear home from the hospital after being born.
I feel I have earned the right to say and feel what I want regarding all of the bullshit surrounding the Chargers and their move to Los Angeles.
If you don’t think I have earned the right to do as I mentioned above, maybe I’ll draft you next year.
I am still working through some feels and butt-hurt on this subject, so I’ll use our website to “write through it,” so to speak.
(I really am as bitter and immature as this makes me look; I own it. I am 38 years young.)
It appears that the Los Angeles Chargers will have to wait until at least Week 2 to play their first regular season game at home in the intimate confines of the StubHub Center.
The Bolts will travel to Denver for a Monday Night contest against the Broncos in Week 1, according to Mike Klis of 9News.com.
League Network source: Broncos to open 2017 season at home vs LA Chargers on Monday night. #9sports
— Mike Klis (@MikeKlis) April 20, 2017
The Chargers are no strangers to opening up the regular season on Monday Night Football, as they have begun their season in such a manner multiple times in the last decade.
The biggest news about this is the Chargers will not have to travel to Colorado during the winter, where the cold weather and snowy conditions always play a part in the outcome of the game.
It goes without saying, Los Angeles Chargers running back Melvin Gordon showed vast improvement during his sophomore campaign in the NFL compared to the disappointment that was his rookie year.
The former Badger was unable to reach the endzone at all during his first season with the Bolts, but he made that seem like a figment of the fans’ imagination during Year 2 of his young career, finding the endzone 10 times in 2016.
Returning for another season to rejoin Gordon in the backfield is third-year ball carrier Branden Oliver.
Despite a switch from No. 43 to No. 32 — long-time number of former Chargers and current Baltimore Ravens free safety Eric Weddle — fans should expect more of the same from the former collegiate stud from Buffalo, who led the team in rushing in 2014.
A new addition to the running-back stable is former Oregon Ducks ball carrier Kenjon Barner. The 27-year-old entered the NFL with the Carolina Panthers before spending time with the Philadelphia Eagles. He was signed by the Bolts this offseason after the team lost Danny Woodhead to the aforementioned Ravens.
A speedster as both a running back and returner, Barner brings an added element to the position in the form of his versatility and possible game-breaking ability. Though he has never started a game since joining the league in 2013, the underused talent has played in 32 NFL games.
With Gordon, Oliver and Barner figuring to fill the top three spots on the ball-carrier depth chart, the team also has the following running backs fighting to prove that they belong on the squad: Kenneth Farrow, Andre Williams, Ronnie Hillman and Dexter McCluster.
Chargers general manager Tom Telesco has already been on record this offseason stating that he would like to add an X-factor similar to that of Kansas City’s dynamic Tyreek Hill. With speed to burn in bunches, Hill makes plays as a runner, receiver and a returner. He is a threat to score from anywhere on the field, every time he touches the ball
Do the Chargers and Telesco already have that answer on the roster? That X-factor that changes games in the blink of an eye?
I am not so sure that they do.
Though I believe the organization has more than enough options to fulfill their running-back needs for the 2017 campaign, I also wouldn’t be surprised if they took a look at the rising draft prospect out of Ohio State University, Curtis Samuel.
Samuel seems to provide the most comparable playmaking ability in this year’s draft class to what Hill does for the Chiefs, also seeing time at running back, wide receiver and as a return-threat.
Telesco and company may believe that drafting Samuel or a player of the similar ilk as of higher importance in comparison to other pressing needs on the roster that can or should be available in the draft. Or he may go ahead and ignore the position altogether due to enough capable bodies already being on the club.
The good news for fans?
You won’t have to wait much longer to find out, as the draft begins in 10 days on April 27 in the City of Brotherly Love, Philadelphia. And, per usual, the BoltBlitz.com staff will be represented by myself and Greg Williams at this year’s selection show at its new venue for ’17.
My take: I don’t necessarily see the need to add a back as the reason the team should or will. But if it comes around to any of their picks following the first round, and they have one rated as the best player available, then pull the trigger and go out and get said player — especially if that BPA is that fast guy from the Buckeye State.
Another name to keep an eye on is running back Joe Mixon of Oklahoma. Should he slip to Day 2 or Day 3 of the draft, that is a name you could see the team take a HUGE chance on by drafting. A player with off-the-field issues like Mixon may watch his draft position plummet, allowing teams in later rounds to snag the man who is possibly the best ball carrier available. Though that doesn’t sound like a Telesco-type selection, pressure is mounting on the entire organization now that there’s an exponentially more powerful microscope in their new home in Los Angeles, as opposed to their former laid-back confines of America’s finest city, San Diego.