Bolts arrange workout for defensive playmaker

Despite featuring two elite pass rushers at outside linebacker, the San Diego Chargers are intent on adding another edge-rushing ‘backer to the mix. The loss of Steve Foley last season hurt tremendously, and the defense was exposed when either Shawne Merriman or Shaun Phillips was off the field. Because of that, the team is looking for another quarterback-seeking missile to add to its arsenal.

The Chargers have set up a private workout with Lawrence Timmons (6-foot-1, 234 lbs.), a dominant outside linebacker from Florida State University. Timmons moved into the Seminoles' starting line-up as a junior in 2006 and proved to be the team's biggest playmaker. He finished the season with 79 tackles (18 of which came behind the line of scrimmage), five sacks, six pass break-ups and two quarterback pressures.

Additionally, Timmons authored several game-changing plays. He scored on an interception, a fumble recovery and a blocked punt return - one of two kicks he blocked last year. For his efforts, he was named all-ACC honorable mention and co-recipient of the Seminoles' Hinesman Award, given to the player with the most dominant overall performance.

Timmons has the ability to excel in any scheme but prefers to play in a 3-4 defense, the brand currently deployed in San Diego.

"I'd say (I prefer the) 3-4 because I rush off the end," he said. "But coverage is everything at FSU. We drop just as much as anybody. I've been doing it since I've been there."

Although he got a taste for the 3-4 in college, the Seminoles' primary defense was a 4-3 alignment.

"In our 3-4 at FSU, I played the Will and Sam, so I played both outsides. We ran 3-4 like 25 percent of the time," Timmons said.

That versatility would be a great addition to San Diego's linebacker corps. At outside linebacker, he and Marques Harris would combine to give the Chargers tremendous pass-rushing talent coming off the bench.

Also, he has the ability to play some inside linebacker, a considerable bonus given the offseason losses of Donnie Edwards and Randall Godfrey.

The problem is that General Manager A.J. Smith would have to burn his first-round pick to acquire Simmons. Although that may be a good value selection, the Chargers seem to have more pressing needs elsewhere.

Still, if any team is able to abide by the best-player-available theory it is the Chargers, a team coming off a 14-win season in which it sent a dozen players to the Pro Bowl.

During his private workout, Timmons will have a chance to convince the Chargers that he should be the top pick in their 2007 draft – assuming he falls to No. 30, that is. If his case is as convincing as his game film, Smith may just be enamored enough to draft him.

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