Five Undrafted Rookies with a Shot to Stick

The Chargers have a long history of developing undrafted rookies into significant contributors. Last season, Jahleel Addae beat the odds to become a big part of the secondary. Who will emerge from this year's crop? Here is a look at the five leading candidates.

CB Chris Davis, Auburn -- From Iron Bowl hero to undrafted free agent, Davis is determined to make a name for himself all over again. He picked a great place to continue his football journey, as the Chargers are thin at cornerback even after drafting Jason Verrett with the No. 25 overall pick.

Davis is a smooth athlete with excellent awareness and change-of-direction skills. He is also a gifted punt returner (18.7 yards per return in 2013), which will greatly boost his odds of winning a roster spot. He will battle the likes of Crezdon Butler, Steve Williams and Marcus Cromartie.

WR Brelan Chancellor, North Texas -- Like Davis, Chancellor will need to shine on special teams to win a place on the 53-man roster. The Chargers appear open to keeping a kick-return specialist (as evidenced by the drafting of Marion Grice) and Chancellor's open-field evasiveness and tackle-slipping ability give him a legitimate chance to win the gig.

Chancellor is undersized (5-foot-9, 188 lbs.) and lacks experience against top competition. But he always puts up numbers and has the right mindset to transition to the pro game. He will have to beat out seventh-round pick Tevin Reese and possibly Seyi Ajirotutu, but a strong preseason could make that possible.

OT Jeremiah Sirles, Nebraska -- Based solely off team need, Sirles has as good a chance to earn a roster spot as any undrafted rookie. San Diego has a shaky crop of backup tackles: Mike Harris, Kenny Wiggins, Willie Smith and Nick Becton. The top reserve tackle, starting guard Jeromey Clary, can only play on the right side, which only adds to Sirles' appeal.

Sirles has experience at left and right tackle, using his big frame and long arms to effectively move defenders laterally. He is always in the right position and has the intelligence and motor to keep improving his game. He is not a great athlete and doesn't boast an especially high ceiling, but he could be a classic swing tackle who provides steady depth on both sides of the line.

DE Ricky Tjong-A-Tjoe, Boise State -- As is the case with Sirles, Tjong-A-Tjoe benefits from playing a position with a spot up for grabs. Although he did not post stellar workout numbers, the game tape shows Tjong-A-Tjoe to be an active and disruptive player who could provide 15-20 quality snaps per game as part of Don Johnson's rotation.

Tjong-A-Tjoe comes off a senior season in which he recorded 52 tackles, four TFLs, four passes batted down, a forced fumble and a sack.

LB Alvin Scioneaux, Wofford -- Scioneaux is the biggest long-shot on the list, but realistically, all undrafted rookies are long-shots. He played outside linebacker in Wofford College's 3-4 defense, but his size (6-foot-2, 232 lbs.) has him better suited to play on the inside in the NFL. He is in a similar situation to 2011 seventh-round pick Andrew Gachkar, who has carved out a nice career by shining on special teams and backing up multiple linebacker positions.

The Chargers have a lot of questions at linebacker and it is impossible to count on Dwight Freeney, Larry English or Jonas Mouton to be season-long contributors. Depending on how things shake out, Scioneaux could have an opportunity to sneak onto the back end of the roster.



Which undrafted rookies will make the 53-man roster? Discuss in the message boards.



Michael Lombardo is a long-time contributor to the Scout.com 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.


SD Super Chargers Top Stories