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Drew Brees has never seen the weapons he has today with the San Diego Chargers. Even at Purdue when Brees was throwing to Vinny Sutherland and John Standeford, his options were not as special as the Chargers of 2003. Consider Brees was the number two rusher on Purdue in 2000 (509 rushing yards) and LaDainian Tomlinson becomes more special.

With Purdue, Drew Brees had Montrell Lowe to hand the ball off to. He was rewarded with 998 yards rushing which can't compare to the numbers LaDainian Tomlinson has put up and will put up in the future.

Now put David Boston in the lineup and instantly the Chargers have become an explosive option. Forget the number two receiver for a second, hell Indianapolis has for years, and think about the possibilities. They are endless. Marty Schottenheimer would still say it comes down to execution, but hey we can start to dream.

On Wednesday in practice, the possibilities started to unfold. A trick play was instituted and practiced. Now as much as I would love to tell you the play, I cannot give away the playbook to opposing teams. Think about it. Every team probably has a similar play tucked up under their sleeves, but here it was, and I can see how it will work already. A sure touchdown if it is executed properly.

Seth Burford returned to North America and he looks confident. He may have had too much zip on the ball as he was drilling passes to his running backs and a few bounced off their hands. Maybe that is why Lorenzo Neal and Joey Goodspeed missed consecutive passes, or maybe it was just a lack of concentration. While no one has ever claimed Neal has hands, thus far in camp his receiving skills have proved to be pedestrian. Of course most fans just care that he blocks for LT like the Pro Bowler from last season.

Antonio Gates is still having some trouble with his hips. When turning for ins and outs he is still slow to find the ball and position his body for the catch. The result was a few drops today. One area he has shown progress is in his straight ahead blocking. He looks more comfortable in his stance and is springing out of the set position, likely combining some of the basketball skills he possesses with his newly developed football skills.

Brees was not on target at the start of practice. He led his running backs a bit too far and it resulted in a few misses for the undrafted guys.

During running drills today, Jesse Chatman barely got touched showing elusiveness and a hop to his step as he winded through defenders. This was by far the best he has looked this offseason.

The younger safeties had a bit of a rough time out there. Hanik Milligan was not quick enough to catch up with Tim Dwight on one route and the price was an easy completion. His read on the route was a bit slow, which caused the separation. Milligan also was a step or two behind David Boston as Boston hauled a pass in.

Terrence Kiel may have been offering advice on positioning but he had a rough day diagnosing plays. On a running play Kiel lost sight of the ball and dropped back into coverage before recognizing the play five steps too late. The result was Chatman deep into the secondary before anyone got close.

A few plays later Kiel bit on a play fake which left Drayton Florence all alone in one-on-one coverage deep in the secondary against Boston. Luckily for Kiel, Florence was up to the task and swatted the ball down before it got to Boston.

Finally the team practiced some punting drills. Focusing on the return game was the main priority here. Taking turns fielding punts were Tim Dwight, Dondre Gilliam and Brian Sump.

Dwight led things off and Tay Cody was the first man downfield. Dwight still was able to get about 5 yards before he would have been hit.

Gilliam followed things up with a fair catch as about five defenders circled like sharks on a short punt.

Sump had to run half the field to catch his first punt and he took it on the run at full speed. The punt did not have much height and the coverage unit would have paid dearly as Sump ran about 15 yards before anyone was close to touching him.

Gilliam took the next punt and zigzagged sideline to sideline with little room to move north and south.

Dwight took the last punt during the drills and was met quickly by Zeke Moreno.

Unfortunately, we were hoping to see more from Sump as a returner, but many practices await us in the future and we can diagnose his talents as a return man then. Dwight looks like his aggressive self back there and should start as the team's punt returner. He proved last season how valuable he is in that role.

Denis Savage can be reached at safage@cox.net or via the following link: Denis Savage

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