Thursday Morning Mini-Camp

Mini-Camp is now open and will continue through the weekend. This morning marked the start of a new era in San Diego. The Chargers have built a team based on speed and veteran leadership, and today we saw some of that shine through. With so many players vying for a spot on the 53 man roster, the battles and effort put forth today could go a long way towards determining a player's future in this league and with this team.

After 10 minutes of stretching and some light running Mini-Camp got underway.

Today saw some semblance of favoritism as players began getting put into their respective units. The first team linebacking crew included Ben Leber, Donnie Edwards and Zeke Moreno. On offense, Justin Peelle got the nod at tight end and was complimented by Tim Dwight and David Boston at receivers. Three quarterbacks got the majority of quality snaps with the receivers. Drew Brees threw to the first unit described above, Doug Flutie was paired with Eric Parker and Reche Caldwell and Seth Burford got a plethora of receivers. While others did mix into the equation from play to play, these units were the most prevalent.

Brees to Boston was a common sight out there today. Boston, who seems at ease in his role, confidently ran his routes and hauled in practically everything thrown his way.

LaDainian Tomlinson looks to be in mid-season form. He ran routes and caught the ball effortlessly and was showing the nice cutbacks that earned him over 1,600 yards last season.

Another back who had a great day in the backfield was Nick Maddox. A day after Jesse Chatman was on fire, Maddox stepped up his play. He showed nice acceleration through the holes created and was patient waiting for his blocks to develop. His vision with the defense bearing down also warrants applause. He regularly cut to the open hole and rarely found himself in trouble behind the line. He also caught the ball well out of the backfield.

The defensive secondary was off by a step most of the morning. Kevin House in particular was not honoring the talent at receiver. Almost every play he was 10 yards off the line of scrimmage and was getting burned badly. Not only were completions happening in front of him on quick slants, but he could not recover in time to make the tackle as receivers sped past him getting deep into the secondary.

The defensive line played well today. During running drills the line was collapsing on the running lanes well. While they did get beat, mostly by Maddox as mentioned above, they were rarely out of position. On occasion they did get mauled trying to beat their blocks, but they won out more times than they lost. Otis Leverette had a fine morning. He regularly worked himself into the backfield and blew up Alex Tuttle on one play. Coming off left end he pushed Tuttle back with such ferocity, he was able to maneuver back inside to meet a runner who thought he had a lane. Continuing the play after meeting him, Leverette attempted to strip the ball, but was unsuccessful. The play was just one example of his hustle on the day.

Quentin Jammer may have not had a good day covering, but what he did show was his tackling mechanics. On every play he was close to a receiver he went into his tackling routine. Jammer would get low and perform the ghost tackle picturing the whole play in his mind and how he would not let the receiver get past him. He is the only one thus far to do that on every play and it could be why he is perhaps the team's best tackler.

Mike Scifres was kicking off from the 40 yard line. With drills happening at his back he had no other choice. He was a little erratic with his kicks as some had good hang time while others looked like bullets. He did manage to hit them to the lip of the end zone and beyond translating that to inside the 10 from the 30 yard line.

A more complete recap with specific plays will happen tonight. I will also post some news not available anywhere else on our premium boards located at:

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

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