Chargers running back Melvin Gordon is getting a fullback with familiarity.
The Chargers spent the 198th overall pick on J.J. Watt's younger brother, Derek, a fullback out of Wisconsin. He will reunite with teammate Gordon, whom he blocked for when the two played together in college. The move should help Gordon, who seemingly could have used a fullback his rookie season in the NFL.
Watt played in 47 games in his four-year career with the Badgers, making 24 starts and finishing with 30 receptions for 309 yards and a touchdown. He was a key component of two of the three best single-season rushing performances in school history (283.8 yards per game in 2013 and a school-record 320.1 yards per game in 2014). The Badgers also set a school record for total offense in 2013, at 480.8 yards per game.
"What I'm most proud of is he's done it his way," older brother J.J. Watt said of Derek recently. "He's very smart. He can catch, he can block. He knows offenses well. He knows what he's doing. I work out with him, so I know how hard he works. He works extremely hard."
Watt has blocked for Montee Ball, Gordon and several other players who have made it to the NFL. From a 2015 article:
"He's seen as our foundation," junior running back Dare Ogunbowale said at Wisconsin's football media day Sunday. "He's the oldest guy in the meeting room. He's been there to see a lot of great running backs and a lot of great Badgers moments."