Michael Huey

Huey

 

According to Eric Williams of ESPN.com, the Chargers waived center/guard Michael Huey on Thursday.

The team has yet to confirm the move as of yet.

 

 

 

Huey, a former three-time Arena League champion with the Arizona Rattlers was picked up last year as a project along the offensive line. He has yet to play in an NFL game.

The Chargers recently signed offensive lineman Matt Slauson to a two-year contract, making Huey expendable in the eyes of the team.

I know, I know, Chargers fans.

“Why in the heck didn’t they release Trevor Robinson?”

Quite frankly, they must not feel comfortable about third-round draft choice Max Tuerk getting 100% healthy prior to the start of the 2016 regular season.

Robinson graded out as the worst center in all of the NFL in 2015, per Profootballfocus.com; further prompting fans to ask why he is still on the roster.

The Bolts may still cut ties with Robinson before the season begins. If they were to do so, the team would save $2.3 million in salary cap space.

 

Thanks a lot for reading.

 

Booga Peters

 

renner2

 

No, this is not an April Fool’s Day joke.

On Wednesday, the San Diego Chargers made a signing that went largely unnoticed in the Chargers community, not to mention on a national level. The Bolts signed 6-foot-3, 225-pound quarterback Bryn Renner to their roster. Terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

I can almost hear the ‘Who is Bryn Renner?’ chorus from here…

Bryn Renner was a two-sport standout upon entering college at the University of North Carolina. Renner worked out for the New York Yankees during his freshman year before turning his focus solely to football. He became the starting quarterback for UNC in his sophomore season in 2011.  In his three years as a starting quarterback, he became the third-leading passer in UNC history.

In 34 games at UNC, Renner went 668-1005 for 8,221 yards with 65 touchdowns and 25 interceptions. He completed his career with a 66% completion percentage and quarterback rating of 151.

A shoulder injury against N.C. State derailed his senior season after seven games. Subsequently, Renner went undrafted and signed with the Denver Broncos as a free agent. Renner was cut by Denver at the end of the preseason.

He would rebound by signing with the Arizona Rattlers of the Arena Football League in October 2014. Renner would win an ArenaBowl championship ring with the Rattlers that season, blowing out the Cleveland Gladiators, 72-32.

In January 2015, Renner was signed by the Baltimore Ravens, only to be released at the beginning of the regular season. Two days before Christmas, he was signed to the practice squad of the Tennessee Titans.

Now, Renner reunites with former Rattlers teammate and current Chargers guard Michael Huey in America’s Finest City. Hopefully his stay will be a long and fruitful one.

 

Bolt Up!!

 

The Greg One

 

#TelescoMagic

Helmets2

 

After placing offensive lineman Johnnie Troutman on reserve-injured and waiving tight end Kyle Miller, the Chargers have promoted offensive lineman Tyreek Burwell to the 53-man roster. The team also brought back offensive lineman Michael Huey to the practice squad, reports The San Diego Union-Tribune.

The offensive line dealt with multiple injuries in Sunday’s loss to the Vikings. King Dunlap left the game with what was reported to be a concussion. This was after guard Orlando Franklin was carted off of the field with a lower-leg injury. D.J. Fluker, who probably shouldn’t have been playing, was in and out of the lineup dealing with an injury of his own. Like Fluker, Chris Watt was battling a groin issue and was eventually replaced by Trevor Robinson.

After the promotion of Burwell, the Bolts still have one available spot on their 53-man roster. It would appear that the team will look to add another offensive lineman, or promote Craig Watts Jr., Michael Ola or the recently acquired Huey.

The Chargers are, like 2014, already being decimated by injuries along the offensive line. If the team is unable to find a way to form a cohesive unit upfront, the Chargers are doomed to miss the playoffs for a second consecutive season. It is imperative that Philip Rivers has time to get rid of the ball in passing situations, and the running game has the needed holes to get work done on the ground.

 

Booga Peters

 

 

San+Diego+Chargers+v+Pittsburgh+Steelers+i9rhNtAYRipl

 

On Saturday night, quarterback Philip Rivers agreed to a four-year contract extension with the San Diego Chargers that will keep him in lightning bolts through the year 2019. The deal is between $84-85 million dollars and comes with $65 million guaranteed dollars per NFL Networks’ Ian Rapoport who broke the story. Rivers will sign the extension on Monday.

The Chargers front office has taken a lot of fire this offseason for how they have handled player contracts this offseason. They stepped up to the plate and guaranteed Rivers will be a Charger for life as GM Tom Telesco has said in countless interviews. The exclamation point is the guaranteed money. The $65 million is the largest guaranteed dollar amount given to a player in NFL history. The deal surpasses the $61.5 million that was guaranteed to Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson just a month ago.

This is a lightning bolt of great news that has energized the San Diego fan base if you peruse social media. Despite what happens in the relocation scenario, the elephant in the room was Rivers, who was in the last year of his current contract this season. The subject of trade speculation in the weeks leading up to the draft, Rivers spoke hesitantly about his willingness to resign if the Chargers move to Los Angeles. Thankfully, that game is over and the franchise quarterback will stay put until the day he decides to hang up his cleats.

Though it remains to be seen how the new members of the offensive line perform, Rivers had to be impressed in the guys the front office brought in to protect him. Orlando Franklin (6’7″, 320 lb) is a left guard the Chargers signed away from the rival Denver Broncos. Joe Barksdale (6’5″, 326 lb) is a right tackle signed away from St. Louis. The pair of 27-year old studs solidify weak spots on both sides of the line.

The signings of reserve center Trevor Robinson (6’5″, 300 lb), guard Michael Huey (6’4″, 317 lb) and tackle Chris Hairston (6’6″, 330 lb) provide quality depth to a line that resembles a turnstile last season. This group will be tasked with keeping Rivers clean and opening holes for the running backs. At first look, they look very capable of doing so.

With Rivers solidly back in the fold, they are primed to overtake the Denver Broncos and reclaim their former dominance at the top of the AFC West. They’re bound to experience growing pains with new workhorse running back Melvin Gordon. Much is expected of the Chargers 2015 first round draft pick but his transition to the pro game will be a little easier with a stable of veterans to lean on. A healthy Danny Woodhead and human bowling ball Branden Oliver will also take pressure off as they will share the backfield load, turning the running back position into a three-headed monster.

This deal was inevitable. Rivers is undoubtedly the heart and soul of the team. He is the undisputed leader and face of the franchise. Rivers’ intelligence, toughness and passing proficiency is unquestioned. At this moment, Rivers is the sixth highest rated passer in NFL history. By the end of his career, Rivers will own every significant Chargers passing record.

Will San Diego win the West this year? If they stay healthy (big if), they can absolutely overtake the Broncos. At the very least the race for the top spot should go down to the wire. I expect at least ten wins this season which puts them in the playoff picture. Rivers has his best collection of offensive talent top to bottom since the Tomlinson years.

Peyton Manning is already declining and will most likely retire at the end of this or next season. Rivers still has plenty of life left in his arm and we long suffering bolts fans can finally realistically expect deep postseason runs culminating with a long overdue Super Bowl ring(s) for our MVP!

Congratulations Philip from all of us in Bolt Nation!

 

Bolt up!!

 

The Greg One

 

#TelescoMagic

 

 

Q

 

Golly! It’s about gosh darn time.

Tonight at 7:30 pm your San Diego Chargers will host the Dallas Cowboys at Qualcomm Stadium. Although the starters won’t see much playing time, there is a lot to be excited about.

 

  1. As mentioned above, the first-team offense and defense won’t be on the field for more than a series or two.
  2. This is the 16th time the Chargers and Cowboys have met in the preseason. The Bolts hold an 8-7 advantage.
  3. Please understand in advance that both teams will be very “vanilla” in their play calling on both sides of the ball.
  4. It will be interesting, due to his inexperience at right guard, how long D.J. Fluker will stay in the game.
  5. The final score does not matter in the slightest. These preseason contests are about evaluating the players and staying healthy. For example, the 2008 Detroit Lions went 4-0 during the preseason that year. They then went on to finish the regular season as the only team in NFL history to go 0-16.
  6. The last report I heard about Jason Verrett playing tonight was that it was a “longshot.” It wouldn’t surprise me if Brandon Flowers sat this one out, as well.

 

Players to keep an eye on:

Melvin Gordon – Being listed as the starting running back on the depth chart, Gordon won’t be on the field too much. But it will be nice to see the first-round draft choice in action. Keep an eye on him in pass protection and as a receiver out of the backfield.

Colton Underwood – Per the advice of Nick Hardwick during his new program “Behind the Bolt,” Underwood is a player that I’ll be keeping an eye on. The second-year linebacker has impressed many people at Chargers Park during this offseason. Underwood should see a quite a bit of playing time tonight.

Ryan Carrethers – The former fifth round draft pick is entering his second-year with the Bolts. With Sean Lissemore sitting this one out due to a hand/wrist ailment, Carrethers could see more of the field than expected. The 24-year-old began to come on late during the 2014 season before getting hurt, pushing the pocket and filling running lanes.

Titus Davis – This will be about the sixth time that I have written about Davis, I know, but I really think this kid has a chance to earn a role with this team. It may only be with the practice squad, but he just looks like he belongs in the NFL. Due to the wide receiving corps being stacked on the 53-man roster, he will have the opportunity to soak in as much knowledge as possible from the veterans at his position.

Josh Lambo – The undrafted free agent has his first chance to show off his leg on kickoffs starting this evening. If he performs well throughout the next month, he may state his case for a spot on the 53-man roster. That is not to say he’ll take field goal and extra point attempt duties from Nick Novak, but it is no secret that Novak struggles on kickoff depth. Keeping two kickers is not completely out of the question.

Michael Huey – The 26-year-old is now in his second stint with the Chargers. He spent some time with the team in 2011. Huey has received a ton of praise from McCoy during training camp. He has recently been working with the second-team offense at right guard. With Johnnie Troutman spending a bit of time watching from the sidelines, this is a good opportunity for Huey to seize the back-up role at right guard.

Craig Mager – This year’s third-round draft choice has struggled adapting to the pace and complexity of the NFL game. Tonight’s game is a great stepping stone for him to begin to slow down the thinking process and just play football. Mager is very athletic with good speed. Another impressive part of his game is his physicality. He is not afraid to stick his nose in there against the running game.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

troutman

 

By now, the news has spread through the San Diego Chargers’ news wire that free agent offensive tackle Joe Barksdale has been signed by the Bolts. The offensive line has been an area that needs improvement this offseason. They have re-signed left tackle King Dunlap and reserve center Trevor Robinson. Offensive guard Orlando Franklin was added via free agency, as was Chris Hairston, former Buffalo Bill. The team also brought in guard Michael Huey for depth or as a camp body.

Barksdale, 26, was a third-round pick in 2011 by the Oakland Raiders. The St. Louis Rams claimed him off waivers prior to the 2012 season. Barksdale has played the last 29 consecutive games for the Rams at right tackle. Now at the end of his rookie contract, the Rams drafted Wisconsin offensive tackle Rob Havenstein, instead of re-signing Barksdale as an unrestricted free agent.

Until the Rams’ offensive line was beset by injuries midway through the season, particularly to Jake Long and Davin Joseph, Barksdale ranked as a top-15 tackle according to Pro Football Focus. As the injuries and losses mounted during the second half of the season, his ranking also plummeted. The Chargers signed the 6’5″, 325 lb. bruiser to a one-year deal.

With Barksdale in the fold, the projected starting offensive line looks to be King Dunlap at left tackle, Orlando Franklin at left guard, Chris Watt at center, Barksdale at right tackle with D.J. Fluker moving to right guard. Guard Johnnie Troutman would be the odd man out of the starting lineup.

Looking at Troutman’s body of work, his career to date has been marred by injuries and ineffective play. He was the Chargers fifth-round pick in the 2012 NFL Draft. Troutman missed his entire rookie season with a torn pectoral muscle suffered two weeks before the draft. In 2013, he started nine games and missed seven as a result of injury, or ineffectiveness. Coach McCoy benched Troutman halfway through the season after picking up an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

The injured reserved list was where Troutman’s season would end in 2014 due to a knee injury. Though he played 15 games, his run and pass blocking were equally abysmal and contributing factors to the overall lack of offensive production that caused the Chargers to miss the postseason by one game.

All the offensive line woes can’t be blamed on Troutman, but it is easy to see why he will be on the hot seat this season. He is in the final year of his rookie contract and he’s not shown he’s worthy of a starting position, much less a new contract. Younger, hungrier and more talented lineman are coming in every season and Troutman has yet to prove himself.

Troutman will be in a battle just to make the roster, as he will have to show he belongs with Hairston, Huey and the host of UDFA linemen the Chargers brought in to create quality depth at all positions on the line. The Chargers lose nothing by keeping Troutman, but they can gain a more capable, reliable player with whom they already have and who will become available when final roster cuts occur.

In the end, I believe Johnnie Troutman will not play another down in a regular season game for the Chargers. Like letting Ryan Mathews walk, it’s addition by subtraction. One less injury-prone player on the roster makes the team better. Best of luck to Troutman elsewhere, but his time is up.

What do you think? Does Troutman deserve one more year to prove himself?

 

Bolt Up!!

 

 

The Greg One

 

 

#TelescoMagic

Barksdale

 

Offensive tackle Joe Barksdale has agreed to terms with the Chargers, first reported by Yahoo’s Rand Getlin. It is a one-year deal worth the minimum base salary and a $350,000 signing bonus, per NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport. He can earn up to an additional $1 million in incentives.

The 26-year-old is entering his fifth season in the NFL, playing for both the Oakland Raiders and, most recently, the St. Louis Rams. Barksdale started 29 games in the last two seasons with the Rams, including all 16 games last year.

After passing up the opportunity to add to the offensive line via the draft, Tom Telesco has added Barksdale via free agency, joining Orlando Franklin, Chris Hairston and Michael Huey as free agent pickups this offseason.

Now the elephant in the room is whether or not DJ Fluker will remain at right tackle, or be kicked inside to right guard, where he may be better suited to excel. Although Telesco has said the team is comfortable with Fluker at tackle, success in the NFL isn’t about being comfortable, it’s about putting the best players out on the field.

It will be worth keeping an eye on what the starting offensive line will look like going into this season.

ChrisHairston

 

 

It seems as if the San Diego Chargers are still tweaking the offensive line with the addition of tackle, Chris Hairston. The fomer fourth rounder and Buffalo Bill was a restricted free agent who was not re-signed.

At 6-foot-6 and tipping the scales at 330 pounds, Hairston will be one more addition to the offenisve line depth chart. The extent of depth is extremely important for the unit considering the line was the most injured group last year. Additionally, Hairston is versatile and has played both the tackle and guard position. His bulky size and physicality are great possessions to have in pass protection or run blocking situations.

Just before Tom Telesco added Hairston, the Bolts signed Michael Huey, a former guard for the Arizona Rattlers. The offensive line is starting to look like they will be heading into a highly competitive training camp. With only a 53-man roster, men will be fighting for a playing spot.

The signing of Hairston reunites him with current Chargers offensive line coach Joe D’Alessandris. He was also teammates with free agent aquisition and wide receiver Stevie Johnson for three seasons in Buffalo.

 

What do you think of Chris Hairston wearing lightning bolts? Let us know below.

Thanks and Bolt Up!

 

Cheryl White

Huey

 

In a move that went largely unnoticed on Tuesday, the Chargers signed offensive guard Michael Huey. The 25-year old Huey is 6’5, 315 lbs. and has played for three seasons. All of Hueys’ three seasons have been in the Arena Football League playing for the Arizona Rattlers. He played for the Texas Longhorns in college, appearing in 47 games, 20 as a starter.

According to Arenafootball.com, Huey was first team All-Arena last season and in his rookie season in 2012. He was All-Arena second team in 2013. The Rattlers have won the Arena League championship all three seasons and Huey has started all but four games during Arizona’s dynastic championship string. Center Jeff Baca and nose tackle Chas Alecxih were waived by the Chargers to make room for Huey.

Huey’s signing adds depth to the offensive line overhaul GM Tom Telesco has undertaken this offseason. He started by resigning left tackle King Dunlap to a long-term deal then followed it up by poaching offensive guard Orlando Franklin from the Denver Broncos and inking him for five years. Include the two-year deal the Chargers gave to center Trevor Robinson and Huey becomes the fourth signing to the offensive line in a month.

Telesco knows protecting Philip Rivers is priority one and the Chargers were decimated all over the offensive line last season, especially at center. It’s better to have too many bodies ready to go than too few and too unprepared bodies. These signings should be encouraging to Chargers faithful hungry to see the Chargers return to the time they were perennial playoff favorites.

Huey was an attendee in the recent NFL Veterans Combine held in Phoenix during the week of the Owner’s Meetings. This isn’t Huey’s first look from an NFL team, he was on the Washington Redskins practice squad last season and was also on the Chargers practice squad in 2011. With the offensive line issue more dire now than it was then, he’ll get another shot to live his dream and help the Chargers solidify the line without having to mismatch players.

I like this signing a lot. Unlike other players who were at the Veterans Combine, Huey has not been out of the game for an extended amount of time. He’s been a durable offensive line mainstay for the reigning, defending three-time Arena League champions. Many will unwisely discount him for the fact that he’s from the Arena League.

Keep in mind they play at twice the speed the NFL does in the AFL. The number of plays are greater and time between plays are much less than in the NFL. An offensive lineman has to be in prime physical condition to handle that type of workload. The players aren’t any smaller than they are in the NFL and there isn’t that great a disparity in talent. The NFL wouldn’t invite these players if there was. Don’t be surprised if Telesco adds another name to the offensive line mix before the draft rolls around. In the meantime, welcome Mr. Huey to San Diego via twitter; @themichaelhuey.

 

Bolt Up!!

 

The Greg One

 

#TelescoMagic

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