Former Bills and 49ers wide receiver Stevie Johnson chose to sign with the Chargers on Tuesday for three years and about $10.5 million. That fills a much-needed veteran receiver spot after Eddie Royal signed with the Bears. So, are they done? Do the Bolts need to draft a receiver? Yes, they still need to draft a receiver.
Receivers currently on the active roster: Keenan Allen, Malcom Floyd, Stevie Johnson, Jacoby Jones, and Dontrelle Inman.
Allen is the youngest at 22, and the one with the most upside. The second youngest is Inman. He played a total of two games last season and did fine, but seems to have little upside. Johnson, 28, has seen his production fall off since his last season in Buffalo (2013). Floyd and Jones are 33 and 30, respectively. M-80 is two seasons removed from what could have been a career-ending neck injury. In 2014, he played a 16-game season for the second time in his career. Jacoby seems to be more of a deep threat receiver than an every down receiver. So, with that being said, the depth on this team in the receiving corps is still thin.
Some receivers to watch for in this upcoming draft:
This year’s NFL draft is loaded with wide receivers. This is a perfect opportunity for the Bolts to draft one. Here’s a few that could be there for San Diego at pick #17:
DeVante Parker: Senior from Louisville 6’3″, 209 pounds.
He ran a 4.45 40-yard dash and had a vertical jump of 36 1/2 inches. His last season at Louisville he had 43 catches for 855 yards and five touchdowns. He leaves Louisville with 2,775 career receiving yards and 33 career touchdown catches, ranking him in the top-five in Louisville football history in those categories. Every time I watched him, he looked a lot like Pittsburgh’s Antonio Brown. He could come in right away and help out.
Jaelen Strong: Junior from Arizona State 6’2″, 217 pounds.
He ran a 4.4 40-yard dash and had a vertical jump of 42 inches. His last season at Arizona State he had 82 catches for 1,165 yards and 10 touchdowns. He is a very good jump-ball receiver who is a crisp route runner. His hands are the best part about him. He has hands similar to those of Odell Beckham Jr, as in the ball sticks to him. He could have an impact day one.
Dorial Green-Beckham: 6’5″, 237 pounds.
He ran a 4.49 40-yard dash and had a vertical jump of 33 1/2. He transferred from Missouri to Oklahoma and was suspended for the 2014 season. But in the final season he played, he had 59 catches for 883 yards and 12 touchdowns. He has a big catching radius and quarterbacks can just throw the ball up to him, something Philip Rivers loves to do. He has been compared to Julio Jones, in terms of talent. His off-the-field trouble has him ranked as the fifth best receiver by many in this draft class. If it wasn’t for the off-the-field troubles, he could very well be battling Amari Cooper and Kevin White for the number one ranked receiver in the class.
The Chargers should take a look at all three of these options at #17 for receiver help. If this is the way general manager Tom Telesco wants to go, he will add an immediate starter and a future number one receiver to go along with Keenan Allen. What do you guys think? Who do you like in the draft? Let me know below!
Let’s face it, the Chargers secondary is still a work in progress. Yes, Tom Telesco drafted stud cornerback Jason Verrett last year and quickly swooped up veteran Brandon Flowers after being released from divisional opponent the Kansas City Chiefs. However, that still isn’t enough.
As we are quickly approaching the NFL’s 2015 Draft, there are many players worth looking at. The Bolts’ needs are plentiful this offseason, but building the secondary cannot be overlooked. That’s when you draft and bring in a cornerback like Marcus Peters.
Projected 40-Yard Dash: 4.55
*All Pre-Combine unofficial estimates
Many of you are probably already thinking, “too much baggage”. Well, perhaps you’re right. Peters was kicked off Washington’s squad for multiple run-ins and arguments with the coaching staff. Yet, the NFL is a whole new ballpark. In order to pay the bills, men tend to clean up their acts for an opportunity they have dreamed of since they could remember.
Prior to Peters’ sideline issues, he was projected to be drafted in the first round, according to multiple sources. With great size and physicality against receivers, he would add some grit to the secondary unit.
As a cornerback in the Pac-12 conference, Peters has had some respectable matchups. He had a solid performance against Arizona State’s Jaelen Strong. Other notable games were against Stanford and UCLA. Most importantly, his pass coverage was incredible against Oregon’s crafty receiving unit.
Let’s not forget that this guy can hit. His tackling ability is impressive which all Bolts fans should know has been lackluster. His attitude is much like Verrett – confident and assertive. The rawness he possesses is something that San Diego’s coaching staff can take and groom into a very legitimate addition to the depth chart, or dare I say, possible starter.
This is the type of guy that needs some tweaking, but that’s perfect for a player with a decreased draft stock resulting from a sideline temper tantrum. He could easily be a solid pick if he slips to the second round. Depending on his combine performance and how well his interviews go, Telesco should consider another steal this year.