Chargers Camp: Full Pads

There is nothing like the first full pad practice. Fans in attendance knew they were in for a treat. San Diego Chargers practice in Carson on Saturday delivered a high energy performance that left fans mouths watering for the start of the season. Sunday saw the team in full pads once again.

The offensive line faced off against the defensive line in one on one drills with a quarterback. The objective for the defense was to get pressure on the quarterback while the offensive line had to work to protect the quarterback. The session ran, as many times as it took, until each unit won the drill once.

Jamal Williams started the drill off by jumping to his left off the line and reversing his angle inside to the right, swatting aside Kelvin Garmon with such force Garmon stumbled sideways. Williams then had a clear shot at Cleo Lemon who was the mark for the set of drills. Williams was stunted by Garmon the next time around as Garmon recovered his pride from being beaten so badly the first go round.

Lemon was part of the drill for his elusiveness. With only one man rushing he easily sidestepped any attempt at pressure.

Toniu Fonoti lined up against Jason Fisk next time out and had a beautiful drive block negating Fisk at the point of attack before the whistle blew. Fisk came back the next time with renewed effort. After not being able to twist away from Fonoti taking him straight on in round one, Fisk made a push to his right to get upfield on Fonoti and beat him around the end as Fonoti failed to show proper footwork in keeping his man at bay. Fonoti lunged to try and push Fisk, but was too late as the veteran Fisk used his speed to get past him and near the quarterback. The biggest difference from a year ago is Fisk understanding his physical limitations and adjusting accordingly. Last season he did not change his style to meet the newer demands and was thwarted. It could have been due to the unclaimed injury (knees and ankle) he had during the year.

Damion McIntosh pancaked Ray Lee Johnson at the line offering little ground in pass protection and forcing Ray Lee to take him head on. Johnson burst out of his stance on the second go round and McIntosh held him at bay for quite a while despite being forced on his heels. Johnson was able to close on the QB well enough to chalk up a victory.

Otis Leverette showed nice leverage out of his stance knocking Solomon Page off balance before moving inside to his right to get pressure on Lemon. Page renewed his effort on the second attempt and held Leverette at bay with superior footwork and positioning. Page was not ready for the speed of Leverette on the first attempt, but recovered nicely.

Michael Keathley got the best of Doug Sims on their first attempt at going at it. Sims tried to use his weight advantage to overpower Keathley, but Keathley stood his ground to keep his QB safe. Sims changed his technique on the next time out. Instead of trying to simply bull over Keathley, he made a nice swim move to the inside and caught Keathley with his hands to low to compensate. Sims then burst into the backfield to get pressure on Lemon.

Bob Hallen, playing center, split his one on one session with DeQuincy Scott with neither looking extremely impressive in accomplishing their goals.

Phil Bogle met Scott Pospisil in the next round and Bogle took Pospisil out of the play two straight times, marking the first time any lineman took a victory twice in a row on the day. Bogle showed great footwork in keeping Pospisil at bay. With his leverage low and the lack of movement to escape the block by Pospisil, Bogle made quick work of him driving him into next week. Pospisil finally got on the board when he beat Bogle to the outside as Bogle slipped on the turf while turning to meet the oncoming rush.

Courtney VanBuren had a tough time keeping Adrian Dingle at bay despite his size and weight advantage and his hand slipped up to the helmet of Dingle. Once that happened Dingle was forced back easily. Van Buren quickly realized the speed of defensive ends in the NFL when Dingle did a double move at the line feigning outside before moving back inside to create pressure.

Garmon then had to face Tim Love with Jason Ball out with an injury to the right side of his neck. In the last drill before the horn sounded, Garmon manhandled Love by staying in good pass protection position and turning aside any attempt Love made towards the QB.

Though the drill did not tell us the whole story on how the whole line will work together as a unit, it does tell us that our players have the ability to turn it on at any moment. As most of the drills ended in splits, players compensated for their mishaps in round one, learned from their mistakes and applied the new lessons they had been taught.

Bogle gets the high marks on the day for simply being the best lineman all day long. He rarely got beat on the day and when he did it was loose turf that caused him to go off balance. That second is all a lineman needs to move past. Bogle saw time on the first unit as a reward during one series and was relegated to second team duty afterwards. From his time at mini camp and OTA's, Bogle has shown the most improvement. The instruction he is getting, and Hudson spent a lot of time with him in the spring, has sunk in.

We reiterate from Saturday – Bogle bested both Marcellus Wiley and Carlos Polk in the Oklahoma Drill. Wiley was disappointed to say the least.

"Follow me in the locker room and check my ID; it says CALIFORNIA on the top for a reason. I'm not good at the Oklahoma drill. I'm defeated, with quotations on it, accents, exclamation marks, 0-2 since Marty got here with this Oklahoma drill," Wiley told reporters. "Last year I lost to a 10-year vet in Vaughn Parker, so it was a respected loss and then I lose to a rookie, an undrafted rookie who was fired up a little past the par today."

Every so often a player just gets it. In other words it all comes together for that player. Bogle is that guy.

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