Chargers Draft Review: 2006-2008

Scout.com looks at how the San Diego Chargers have fared in each their last three drafts, with a player-by-player breakdown of the class of 2008.

How the Chargers have done in the draft since 2006:

Total picks: 20
'08 Starters: 6
'08 Backups: 3
Other teams: 1
Out of NFL: 8
Injured reserve/PUP: 2

The Chargers' last three drafts are a mixed bag, with most of the success coming from their 2006 haul.

It was that spring the Chargers snagged five of the six starters they've accumulated over that span.

But the last two exercises haven't been as keen. In 2007, the Chargers went with WR Buster Davis and he wasn't much his rookie year and then hurt most of his second. The Chargers did get a starting safety in Eric Weddle, but they had to surrender four draft picks to do it.

Last year's draft brought in nickel back Antoine Cason and RB/FB Jacob Hester. While the team is pleased with Cason, the price paid for Hester - two picks, including a second-rounder this year - seems a bit steep.


LT Marcus McNeill
Stephen Dunn/Getty
Best pick: LT Marcus McNeill, 2006 (2nd round, 50th overall): Philip Rivers doesn't become one of the most productive quarterbacks in the league without McNeill, a two-time Pro Bowler, protecting his blind side.

Worst pick: WR Buster Davis, 2007 (1st round, 30th overall): The knock on Davis coming out of LSU was that he had trouble staying on the field. Even when he does play, the Chargers aren't pleased with his inconsistency. He ended last season on injured-reserve.

2008 DRAFT PICKS

1 (27) Antoine Cason, CB: Team was upbeat over Cason as he won the nickel role in camp and held it throughout the year. If Antonio Cromartie doesn't rebound in 2009, Cason could earn the starting role. Cason finished with 52 tackles and his two interceptions tied him for second on the team. The Chargers occasionally sent him on blitzes, and although he didn't have any sacks, he had three tackles for losses.

3 (69) Jacob Hester, FB/RB: GM A.J. Smith was smitten by Hester and he gave up quite a booty - including this year's second-round pick, to draft him in the third round. But Hester was overmatched as a lead blocker and had but 19 carries. He did average five yards a carry and had a touchdown, but he lost the coaches' confidence with an early fumble. He didn't become a starter until halfway through the season when undrafted rookie Mike Tolbert went down with a shoulder injury.

5 (166) Marcus Thomas, RB: The Chargers were hopeful Thomas would supply some depth in the backfield, but he didn't make it out of training camp. Smith was looking to replicate his success when finding Michael Turner in the fifth round in 2004.

6 (192) DeJuan Tribble, CB: Was waived before the first month of the season was complete. He then resurfaced on the practice squad and will be given another look in this summer's camp.

7 (234) Corey Clark, T: Clark went back-and-forth between being inactive on the regular roster and on the practice squad. He finished the season on the active roster; he didn't take a snap in a game last year.


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