Barden (6-foot-6, 227 pounds) is the type of player on which San Diego's passing game is centered. He has a big frame, strong hands, and knows how to get his body between the defender and the ball.
Barden is strong and athletic and has made a habit of plucking the ball from the air at its highest point. The Cal Poly product is the first player from his school to be invited to the Senior Bowl -- he clearly made the most of it.
WR Ramses Barden
Barden owns the Mustangs records for career receptions (206), receiving yards (4,203) and TDs (50). He also holds the NCAA record for most consecutive games with a touchdown catch (20).
The Senior Bowl was more than just a venue for Barden to show what he is capable of; it was also an opportunity to work with NFL coaches.
"It's a great tool and asset," Barden said. "It's great to get an opportunity to get a first-hand idea what the NFL is like. To experience the practice environment is a great way to start transitioning."
Barden lacks experience against top competition, but he has outstanding size and shows his worth in his production. He still needs to perfect his route running and has been questioned about his work ethic off the field.
Nonetheless, the results are impossible to ignore. In addition to his gaudy statistics, he earned Great West Conference honors multiple times during his career.
"I feel like I've got great hands," he said. "Anything you ask me to do, I am going to find a way to do it if my body can do it."
If Barden looks more like a power forward than a wide receiver, there's a reason for it. His father played basketball for New York University and reached the Final Four in the early 1960's. Like his father, Ramses was a skillful basketball player in high school.
How much help the Chargers need at receiver has yet to be determined. Malcom Floyd is set to become a restricted free agent; he contributed 27 catches for 465 yards and four TDs last season. Even if he returns, Floyd, Vincent Jackson and Chris Chambers are scheduled for unrestricted free agency after the 2009 season.
Whether Barden is drafted to fill an immediate need or to be groomed for the future, he knows he will bring a lot to the table.
"The team that drafts me is going to get a playmaker, a hard worker, someone who loves to compete, someone who's hungry, will sacrifice his body for his team, who's loyal, who's going to take care of things off the field, and have fun playing football as long as I can, as long as my body allows me," he said.