In the fourth round of the 2016 NFL Draft, Chargers general manager Tom Telesco added another Ohio State player to the roster by selecting inside linebacker Joshua Perry, who played 52 games during his four years as a Buckeye and was a team co-captain as a senior.
Perry started 37 games with Ohio State and finished his career with 298 tackles and all-Big Ten first-team honors his final year. Part of a defense that ranked No. 2 in the FBS in fewest points allowed (15.1) and No. 9 in total defense, Perry joins former teammate Joey Bosa in San Diego, who was drafted by the Chargers in the first round (No. 3 overall).
"I'm a productive backer, a guy who's been able to play downhill, make a lot of tackles over my career," Perry said. "I played a lot of passing downs at Ohio State, used to rush a little bit. And then the things that you don't teach -- the leadership, the passion aspect -- are things that I do.
"Some of the deficiencies I have in the passing game, if you want to call them that, are things that can be taught," he added. "A lot of technical things and things that I'll pick up learning the new system anyways. I think that just from work and repetition, I'll be able to improve on those things."
The 6-4, 252-pound linebacker will add depth to the team's defense, joining Manti Te'o and Denzel Perryman (both drafted under Telesco).
"I wasn't really expecting to be taken by San Diego, just because they've drafted a handful of linebackers the last few years," Perry said. "To be taken in the fourth round means I'm wanted there, which is exciting for me."
Perry was the first fourth-round pick Telesco has made since joining the Chargers in 2013. He's traded away the fourth-round in each of his first three drafts.