Fluker Set To Pave Path For San Diego

In what ended up as a trio of Alabama players selected consecutively during Thursday's NFL Draft, the San Diego Chargers selected offensive tackle D.J. Fluker at No. 11.

New Orleans native D.J. Fluker was in search of a home almost eight years ago after his family was displaced by Hurricane Katrina. Undeterred by the catastrophic circumstances, the 6-5, 339 pound tackle displayed a perseverance level to match his mammoth size. After brief stops at McGill-Toolen Catholic High School (Mobile, AL) and Biloxi HS (MS) he settled in at Foley HS (AL) before becoming a dominant fixture on the offensive line for three seasons at Alabama. Thirty-six career starts later, he capped off his junior year by earning second-team All-America and first-team All-SEC honors.

Thursday evening at the 2013 NFL Draft held amidst the opulence of Manhattan's Radio City Music Hall, the Gulf Coast area resident learned his next home would be near the Pacific Ocean in San Diego. The Chargers selected the enthusiastic right tackle with the eleventh choice in the first round. Known for a voracious appetite, D.J. Fluker was second on the team this season with thirty-six pancake blocks. He missed only 11 assignments in over 700 plays this year for an efficiency rating of 98 percent while allowing just four sacks and committing a scant two penalties. Fluker paved the path for twenty-five 100-yard rushing performances in his Alabama career. Chargers fans will have a chance to grade his road paving skills. Selected as the top player from his position, Fluker now holds the distinction of being the only Tide right tackle chosen in the first round since the common draft was established in 1967.

BamaMag.com caught up with him shortly after he was selected.

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