Inside Scouting Report: CB Derek Cox

The Chargers finally made an impact signing by agreeing to terms with CB Derek Cox on a four-year deal. To learn how significant this move truly is, we get an inside scouting report from NBC Sports show host and Jacksonville-area sports journalist Charlie Bernstein.

The Chargers signed CB Derek Cox to a four-year, $20 million deal on Thursday. A four-year veteran and former third-round pick out of William and Mary, Cox already has three four-interception seasons under his belt.

He becomes San Diego's No. 1 corner, followed by 2011 draftees Marcus Gilchrist and Shareece Wright.

What kind of impact Will Cox have in San Diego? Perhaps more importantly, what are the odds of him staying healthy enough to realize his full potential? To answer these questions and others, we chat with Charlie Bernstein, who has covered the Jaguars for more than a decade.

Here is Bernstein's take:

Assuming he can stay healthy, Derek Cox is a fantastic value for the Chargers. He has great ball skills, good size and has played his best against some of the best quarterbacks in football. Cox is versatile enough where he can play both press-man and zone, but has a tendency for making big plays in man.

His injury history is certainly a concern, as he hasn't had any major issues, just mostly soft-tissue injuries which seem to nag and keep him out. Many of the games he's missed were in 2011, where the team was basically tanking down the stretch anyway (same can be said for the 2012 mindset).

Although Cox is a more than solid cover guy, he isn't a particularly good tackler. There may be some toughness issues in that department.

Overall, the Jaguars drafted him in the third round of the 2009 draft and got a solid return for the pick. Unfortunately, they traded their 2010 second-round pick to New England to acquire him and the Patriots used it to select Rob Gronkowski. Another brilliant Gene Smith move.

What are your thoughts on the Cox signing? Discuss inside the message boards.

Michael Lombardo is a long-time contributor to the network. His analysis has been published by the NFL Network, Fox Sports and MySpace Sports. He has followed the Chargers for more than 16 years and covered the team since 2003. You can see more of his updates by following him on twitter.

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