A Team in Transition

Enough of the negativity and talk of movement to the city of Angels. Lets talk about the San Diego Chargers and where they stand now, heading into the all-important month of April and the NFL Draft.

Although the quarterback situation is still unsettled, the Chargers have made strides in other areas and the plan of AJ is slowly becoming clearer. The Chargers, for all of their bad moves, are looking as if they're making some better ones finally.

Let's be honest, the team is not going to be able to attract the big-name free agents without drastically over-paying for them. A 4-12 team is not exactly a big draw. High-profile veterans want to play for a winner. They want a shot at the big time and a team that has the Chargers' record is not going to be able to promise them that. Look at the Redskins. They are not a winner. Each year they spent sickening quantities of cash and each year have a team that does not mesh and, similarly, does not make the playoffs. They spend the big money because they have to to get the players that excite the fans and make the well of hope spring eternal.

The Chargers have made few moves. They've released Marcellus Wiley and traded David Boston, and then brought in players that few people have ever heard of. I doubt they're done, though. They will trade down in the draft and, I think, grab Ben Roethlisberger or Phillip Rivers, both great quarterbacks. With that trade they will pick up a couple of extra draft choices, most likely a second in this draft and a second next year, possibly a player to be named later. Similar to what they got from Atlanta. With their first second round pick they will pick up a receiver from a class that is very deep. From that moment on they will concentrate on the defensive and offensive lines, most likely with a kicker thrown in for good measure.

After the salary-cap bloodletting following June 1st they will pick up another offensive lineman or two. Looking at it now, this team will not be spectacular, but they will be far better than anyone gives them credit for.

The offensive line will be much improved over past years, populated by young players that the team can expect to have for a number of years, thus giving the line a chance to grow and develop into something special. They have a stud running back and a pro-bowl fullback with a solid back up. At receiver they will be solid, but nothing special. Kevin Dyson was a great pick-up and a cheap one at that. They will be enough to cause team fits, however, when they start stacking the line against LT.

Defensively, this team will be dangerous. They have a good secondary, populated by first round picks. Sammy Davis, once he puts on a little weight will be a good cover corner and Jammer has already shown that he has the skills to be an elite CB. At safety they have good depth and a good mix of veterans and young players with Lassiter and Kiel. Special teams will be better. Of course, it can't get much worse.

This offseason definitely strikes me as an addition by subtraction type of year and I do expect good things from the team, even if they have few marquee names.

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